Table of contents
Written by:
Martin Barrett
Last Updated:

Cornel West MasterClass Review

Cornel West is one of the most well-known public intellectuals in the United States and has taken the world by storm thanks to his outspoken political stances, his unique character, and tireless work within the realms of politics, race, and the history of the western world.

With his MasterClass, students have an opportunity to learn from the master – something usually reserved for his students in the various learning institutions that he has been a part of over the years. But who exactly is Cornel West, and what can students learn from this Cornel West MasterClass review course?

Who Is Cornel West?

Cornel West is an American social critic, philosopher, political activist, and public intellectual thinker, with a specific focus on race, gender, and class in the United States of America.

An outspoken voice of left-wing American politics, West has a reputation for his forthright approach to politics, and his willingness to make a stand for what he believes in, engage in rational debates with friends and political foes alike and approach potentially contentious issues openly and honestly with a view to finding truth and resolution.

He is also a celebrated author, writing several books – some of which include the lauded American Democracy Matters, and Race Matters.

What Does The Course Teach?

Cornel West’s MasterClass course is centered around philosophy – namely what it means to be human. The specific direction of his teaching focuses on three key questions:

  • What does it mean to be human?
  • What are the forms of love that constitute the best of our humanity? (e.g. love of truth, love of goodness, love of beauty).
  • How philosophy serves humanity
  • How do community, tradition, and heritage shape our conception of who we are as humans?

In the trailer for his course, West describes his own personal relationships with music and relates it to the wider human experience with the arts – claiming that to truly enjoy and appreciate something creative like music, you must allow yourself to smile when you had no intention of doing so, and to cry when you didn’t realize you were sad.

West grounds his course in this notion, and states that this is a foundation of what it means to be human – namely, a willingness to feel, even when we don’t feel like it.

What Are The Benefits Of The Course?

In this particular course, there are numerous benefits to prospective students who are interested in West’s work.

In-Depth Teaching

Cornel West teaches philosophy at many universities and engages in public conversations in open forums, however, there are very few people (relatively speaking) who get to experience his teachings.

This is one way that the MasterClass program has helped bring public figures in contact with their audiences (and potential new ones), and how in a sense it has made these unattainable figures more accessible to those with more limited means.

The Content

Cornel West MasterClass Review 1

While West’s might not be the longest of all the courses on MasterClass, he does offer roughly 15 sessions based around a completely different point of philosophy – namely love humanity, compassion, and the importance and power of music (something West himself is incredibly passionate about).

While these might not be long in terms of session length, West has a knack for communicating large quantities of information – usually pertaining to complex ideas – in short periods of time, and in easy to digest chunks.

West is also one of the leading philosophers in the United States, meaning that anything he has to contribute in this manner is not only important and valid but also potentially eye-opening to the individual.

Personal Touch

You also get a personal touch with MasterClasses, as opposed to open forum shows where you can feel lost in a crowd. With these sessions, you can have the feeling of one-to-one tutelage from the comfort of your own home.


You can also engage with like-minded people who are also engaging with the course.

This is one of the many ways that MasterClass focuses on the formation of community – and means that even those who are skeptical about further education can have the option for participation, networking, and even collaboration, should they need it.

Are There Any Downsides?

Of course, there are some downsides to MasterClasses, although this is with the format of the company, as opposed to the quality of the content itself – which in this case is profound.

The Cost

The cost of things is a big issue for many people, and with MasterClass, you do not get a free option to experience some content as a trial.

This means a big leap of faith with limited information, and, especially if you do not have many courses you wish to engage with, could potentially be a waste of money and time.

While they have pricing plans, these tend to benefit families more than the individual – who it will effectively cost more (per person and use) than a family with four users.


The length of each session tends to be between 5 and 15 minutes, meaning that you are not getting a lot of bang for your buck.

While attending a public lecture might potentially set you back more money – this would be a one-off payment, and you would have over an hour’s worth of content to listen to and consume.

For the monthly fee and the lack of a promise of future content, this seems like an unfair combination of high prices and lack of value.

Limited Content

While there are more and more courses being uploaded each month, the amount of content as a whole is still quite limited, meaning that those on a tight budget might find themselves struggling for what amounts to little return.

This makes it also less suitable for those with limited or narrow interests, and if they cannot find other content to follow, they might feel seriously ripped off – especially when you take into account the monthly payment plans.

Is It Worth It?

If you are an existing user of MasterClass, then you will greatly benefit from studying under Cornel West – as he is intelligent, a well-read man with many great and interesting union theological seminary about the western world and the way we live.

However, if you have limited interest in the other courses, then you would do better purchasing one of his books, or indeed checking out his numerous podcast appearances, free lectures, or one of his live talks.

Final Thoughts

And there we have it, everything you need to know about Cornel West, and the content of his MasterClass course which you can use in everyday life.

It’s true that Cornel West is one of the most respected, and has a uniquely brilliant mind in modern intellectualism, and those seeking to engage with his work through this course will find themselves thrown into his world of politics, race, and history – all of which have shaped the forming of contemporary America, and the work he has undertaken so tirelessly throughout his career.

So if you are looking to learn more about these subjects, then why not give his MasterClass a try? Something tells me you won’t be disappointed!

Music is a fantastic way to be creative and express yourself. As one of the most powerful communication tools, you...
MasterClass has some of the best masterclass courses that are taught by celebrities and experts in their field. Whether you...
Masterclass is a Yanka Industries Inc. subscription-based instructional platform available in the United States. You can view a collection of...
Who doesn’t love grilled BBQ food? Even though grilling might seem like an easy way to prepare some food for...
Learning to draw can be quite a difficult endeavor, learning to draw not only requires good discipline and plenty of...