Re. UCLA Students Evals on Anderson/Brenner

Louis Proyect lnp3 at
Fri Jul 12 08:31:43 MDT 2002

>It is true that Professor Anderson mumbles at
>the end of every sentence
>Brenner is the worst professor I have ever had
>in my entire 3 years at UCLA.
>Louis Proyect

Actually Brenner and Anderson do pretty well in comparison to Albion M.
Urdank (a real name), who is another history professor at UCLA. One student

Review posted on 5/16/2001 at 5:17:30 PM
I am a die hard history fan, and had to take a British History class as
part of the requirements for the major. I figured it couldn't be too bad,
after all, McClendon's class was cool. Boy was I wrong. I hated this class
with as much passion as I love history. Urdank is the WORST professor at
UCLA hands down! He would always get to class late and then go over to make
up for it. I had another class right afterwards and I never seemed to get
there on time without having to leave Urdank's class early (or should I say
on time). And even though his dog was cute, it kinda smelled funny and made
the classroom stink as well. He spent half the lecture yelling at the poor
thing. I tried to email him, but he would never respond. He took attendance
which made it impossible to skip class. If you're thinking of taking his
class, DON'T! Wait for someone else to teach it or take a different class.
His class was my worst one out of four years' worth of history classes.

I knew Professor Urdank as Al Urdank in the NYC Young Socialist Alliance
back in 1968. He was an officious young functionary in the organization who
was also a graduate student at Queens College. He used to use the same hand
gestures when giving antiwar reports as some old-timers, who learned public
speaking in the 1930s when times were more formal than the groovy 1960s.

People like him used to drive me crazy. I almost dropped out in 1969
because these student government types/cum Trotskyist strongmen were about
as far removed from my reality as the man in the moon. I was a bit older
than them and my personality and consciousness had been shaped in the late

Urdank, who seemed to have all the ambition to go far in the Trotskyist
movement, dropped out in 1972 or so and pursued an academic career.
Meanwhile, I kept knocking my head against the wall for another 7 years.
Urdank is the author of "Religion and Society in Cotswold Vale :
Nailsworth, Gloucestershire, 1780-1865". I guess it was just as well that I
stayed out of academia, otherwise I might have ended up writing stuff like
that myself.

Louis Proyect
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