Vinay Lal

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Class Most Helpful Review
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CLASSES

HIST 9A
Introduction to Asian Civilizations: History of India See Full Profile

Overall 3.5 Easiness 1.9 Workload 2.2 Clarity 3.7 Helpfulness 3.6

Most Helpful Review

God... Please do trust the 1.6 easiness score of this class! This quarter has already been hard, and this class made my day even harder. Our TA is a nice guy and he does have some cool opinion, but he really scored us to harsh. I follow every instruction he gave me based on the first paper but still got a B for my second paper. If you need a pretty good GPA, please do not attend this class!

(Spring Quarter 2020)
HIST 19
Fiat Lux Freshman Seminars: Essaying America See Full Profile

Overall N/A Easiness N/A Workload N/A Clarity N/A Helpfulness N/A

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HIST 19
Fiat Lux Freshman Seminars: Black Prophetic Voice: Martin Luther King, Jr. and James Baldwin See Full Profile

Overall N/A Easiness N/A Workload N/A Clarity N/A Helpfulness N/A

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No reviews have been written yet.
HIST 19
Fiat Lux Freshman Seminars: COVID-19: Social Distancing, Loneliness, and Other--Pandemics in History and Today See Full Profile

Overall N/A Easiness N/A Workload N/A Clarity N/A Helpfulness N/A

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No reviews have been written yet.
HIST 19
Fiat Lux Freshman Seminars: Race, Politics, and Class in Contemporary Immigration Debates See Full Profile

Overall N/A Easiness N/A Workload N/A Clarity N/A Helpfulness N/A

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No reviews have been written yet.
HIST 19
Fiat Lux Freshman Seminars: COVID-19: Globalization, Nationalism, Nationalism, and State in Wake of Coronavirus See Full Profile

Overall N/A Easiness N/A Workload N/A Clarity N/A Helpfulness N/A

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HIST 19
Fiat Lux Freshman Seminars See Full Profile

Overall 2.0 Easiness 5.0 Workload 3.0 Clarity 3.0 Helpfulness 2.0

Most Helpful Review

I took a fiat lux seminar with Lal, "Essaying America." Seminars are suppose to be based in student discussion but this professor talked for about 80% of the time. He even went over the class time limits with his long rants. His rants were often political, and he would raise his voice which was very uncomfortable for such intimate settings. I was hoping to get more back and forth discussion between students, but majority was the professor questioning student’s comments, sometimes in an interrogative manner. I think he is trying to be socratic in this, but it comes off as arrogant because he obviously holds his opinions as superior to those of the students. I wouldn't take any class that involves discussions with him as the overseer. Also, beware of disagreeing with him politically, when I mentioned gun rights as being written by the “forefathers” as a mode to defend against tyrannical governments, he almost blew a gasket.

(Winter Quarter 2019)
HIST 22
Contemporary World History, 1760 to Present See Full Profile

Overall 3.5 Easiness 3.0 Workload 2.5 Clarity 4.5 Helpfulness 3.5

Most Helpful Review

Pretty large amount of assigned readings, but also seemingly little consequence if you don't actually read for most documents. If you're the kind of student that is good at figuring out what documents you must read and what ones you can ignore, I suspect this will be a pretty easy class for you. I am not great with that skill, so I ended up doing a lot of reading.

What really irked me about this class was the professor's politics. It took me a while to figure out where he stood because even though his position on a given issue was pretty obvious (he was not very subtle about his opinions), he didn't seem to consistently lean one way or the other. He would make comments in favor of gun control and nuclear disarmament, in the next breath decry social justice. He'd constantly have tirades against imperialism, then spend the whole lecture on Nuremberg implying that the punishments in the Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal were too harsh. Eventually, I realized: Professor Lal kind of has the political opinions of a teenager. Or at least that's what he appears to profess. Not left, not right, just contrarian. Perhaps this is just the concept of exposing young college students to new ideas-- but the ideas never really seemed to be ones the professor did not hold nor did they seem to be intentionally broadcast. I'm sure most students won't be bothered by this. But, if you suspect you might be, Prof Lal is not the professor for you.

(Spring Quarter 2021)
HIST 22
Contemporary World History, 1760 to the Present See Full Profile

Overall 3.4 Easiness 3.6 Workload 2.4 Clarity 2.8 Helpfulness 3.0

Most Helpful Review

Loved this class. The readings were interesting and lecture helped to break down the historical back story. If you have a good TA and can keep up with the readings you will be fine in this class. Go to every lecture as Prof Lal points will help you construct your papers. Although he goes off topic sometimes about his personal experiences I believe this is his way of giving real life examples of how history has affected us in the modern era. The final and mid terms are all essays. It's not hard to prepare for as the TA usually gives you the general topics of the multiple essay questions Prof Lal will give.

(Winter Quarter 2019)
HIST 97N
Introduction to Historical Practice: Variable Topics in Indian History See Full Profile

Overall N/A Easiness N/A Workload N/A Clarity N/A Helpfulness N/A

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