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Learner Reviews & Feedback for The Modern and the Postmodern (Part 1) by Wesleyan University

975 ratings

About the Course

This course examines how the idea of "the modern" develops at the end of the 18th century in European philosophy and literature, and how being modern (or progressive, or hip) became one of the crucial criteria for understanding and evaluating cultural change. Are we still in modernity, or have we moved beyond the modern to the postmodern?...

Top reviews


Aug 1, 2019

It was a fabulous journey, and brought me so much nearer to the great minds of the 18th and especially the 19th century, reading original texts, and listening to Prof Roth's wonderful interpretations.


Jan 7, 2016

One of the best professors i've ever come across! If the teacher is so passionate about the subject material as well as conveying the ideas, the course will be excellent. This is one of those courses.

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51 - 75 of 268 Reviews for The Modern and the Postmodern (Part 1)

By Kat

Nov 4, 2016

I listened to both part I and part 2 of The Modern and the Postmodern, but sadly didn't have enough time to do all the reading and assignments. However, I enjoyed these lectures so much I might do this mooc again when I have more time for the readings. GREAT material and I love the way Professor Roth conveys it.

By Emily S

Apr 3, 2020

Really well designed course with interesting reading and excellent lectures to support it. The assignments are interesting to write and really made me think critically about the literature and philosophy we were focused on. The cross-curricular approach to modernity makes it very varied from week-to-week.

By Mohammad A

Oct 6, 2018

Very well-structured and brilliantly taught. If philosophy/sociology/cultural studies interest you but you've never had a chance to learn it in a progressive, structured sequence, then this course is for you. This will help you make wholistic sense of ideas and place them in reference to one another.

By Richard O

Aug 23, 2020

This class gives you a comprehensive understanding of the progression of philosophical ideas from the end of the enlightenment to the end of modernity. You may think you know one of these philosophers well, but the way this course provides historical context is crucial to your understanding of them.

By Ana M R

Jan 25, 2023

Fantastic course. Great reading material. Passionate delivery of content. Contagious excitement. AN invitation for further exploration.

I did not present the written assignments. I took this course with the only intention of attending the presentations and reading the materials; and I did.


Mar 5, 2021

Very interesting course! This course brought me so much nearer to many great minds. I had opportunities to read lots of original texts in the logic order. I like how Professor Roth remained the objective throughout the course without letting his opinions about issues. Highly recommend!

By David H

May 17, 2021

One of the most engaging, coherent and put-together courses I have audited - thank you so much for the effort, humour and structure of these materials.

I didn't participate fully or complete written assignments - but I am very likely to do so on a future pass...

Thanks once more


By Sankar V

May 20, 2017

Information overload for people occupied with other jobs too but a wonderful experience and journey through the essential philosophers that needs to be read for looking into a modern and post modern world. High intellectual quality and wonderfully structured course. cheers! thanks

By E Z

Jul 6, 2020

It was my best experience in online courses . As an artist and journalist, I was completely hopeless when I started this course, but professor Michael S.Roth and his lectures, was a bright spark of hope to me. Thanks to Coursera and especial appreciation to professor Roth.

By Charles D L

Sep 21, 2016

An excellent and thoroughly enjoyable course. The readings are accessible and range in subject from philosophy to psychology, politics to literature. Dr. Roth's lectures are engaging and entertaining. He has excellent credentials and an excellent way of discussing his topics.

By Fatema A

Nov 17, 2020

The course is really invigorating and covers a lot of thinkers and explores the essence of their philosophy. Professor Roth is an amazing instructor who speaks with so much passion and just the right amount of humor to make the whole experience really fun and valuable.

By Jenifer S

Aug 9, 2015

What is the Enlightenment? Part One of this course pulls together a number of stimulating readings to introduce the basic concepts of the title. Taught by an expert with grace and style. Stimulating assignments challenge the student to think comparatively and deeply.

By Tereza K

Aug 12, 2016

I really enjoyed this course. What I found particularly interesting was the possibility of reading the essays of my classmates and learning from them as well. I want to especially thank Prof. Roth for his excitement he brought to philosophy of 18. and 19. century.

By Ana C L

Oct 3, 2015

Amazing oportunity to develop ideas in different subjects around the theme of modernity. The course covers many authors,and though never gets superficial. The best part is Professor Roth and the pieces of readings in an emotional, thrilling way. Thanks Coursera!

By Pam P

Jun 4, 2021

I am writing a book about a woman who wrote a memoir in 1926 and want to be more conversant with intellectual history as I do it. This class was a big help. I started Part II before I realized there was a part I, and now shall continue and complete Part II.


Jul 10, 2020

The course is highly interesting and the topics chosen paint a fairly detailed picture of the era of enlightenment nad the philosophers in modern Europe. The assignments are interesting and I thoroughly enjoyed myself studying the various books and essays.

By Andrea E

Sep 23, 2015

I absolutely loved the course content and the style of the instructor.

The only feedback I'd extend is more variety in the writing assignment prompts, and a little more specificity in the quiz wording. Some of the questions seemed phrased in an unclear way.

By Sumor S

Feb 18, 2017

i learned what I thought I would learn and more! Plus, the other students are really inspiring. It is a great feeling to get a glimpse of how many other people are interested in the same subjects and also write. Great Professor and a great class!

By Lola R M

Jun 26, 2021

This course is well planned and well paced. I feel like I learned a lot from the readings and the very engaging video lectures. This was my first Coursera course and it left me feeling very positively about taking courses online in this format.

By Nivedita F

Sep 8, 2020

Extremely helpful to build a theoretical background for art and architecture. Prof. Michael Roth has a very good way of explaining things in very simplistic terms. I found the course to be devoid of jargon, very simplified and very elaborate.

By Lewis H

May 2, 2019

Fantastic course. I really appreciate the instructor's attention to detail and narrative ability. The topics covered in this class were diverse and interesting. I will certainly be signing up for the second part of this course.

By Yesha B

Jan 19, 2017

The classes were interesting. Activities and assignments were very innovative and helped me to get idea about Modernism and Postmodernism. The best part was getting reviews from peers. I really enjoyed learning in this course.


Feb 16, 2021

The course was very well designed and the curriculum touched upon major events of the era under study. The passion with which Prof. Roth taught the course was inspiring and listening to the lectures was extremely insightful.


Sep 17, 2020

Michael S. Roth is such an inspirational tutor, his command over the course contents and effective delivery was the highlighting feature of this course. I truly recommend this course and enjoyed learning throughout 7 weeks.

By Leanne C

Mar 21, 2017

Thoroughly enjoyed this course. Instructor has an engaging way about him and makes the subject matter clear in the lectures. Essay-work was thought-provoking and forced critical analysis about research and reading material.