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Teaching

Download from here Julia Ostendorf's PP presentation on 1st year exams for History and Politics


Listed below are the research-led European history modules taught by the academic staff associated with the European History Research Centre.

 

A Comparative History of the First World War, 1912-1923 (HI33W)

This final-year undergraduate module allows students to develop a comparative understanding of the experience of the First World War in the context of the period between 1912 and 1923. Students also consider the evolution of the historiography of the conflict since the late 1980s. Transformed by a comparative and cultural turn, the field was also reinvigorated by gender studies and innovative approaches to warfare. Questions of methodology as well as of chronology are now at the core of the historiographical debate. This module challenges the conventional focus on national experiences and offer a pragmatic approach to the comparative and transnational history of the First World War. It explores a range of historical questions including: war and social modernization, nationalism and cultural mobilization, the experiences of soldiers and commanders, economic mobilization, the transformations of the state, gender and citizenship, race and imperialism, the reconstruction of Europe, international relations and peacemaking.
 

Britain in the 1970s: Between New Society and No Society (HI399)

This final-year undergraduate module centres on analysis of a broad range of primary material relating to the history of Britain in the 1970s. It is assessed through a final examination paper that concentrates on ability to use these primary sources in relation to broader historical debate. The module benefits from the fact that Warwick’s own Modern Records Centre (MRC) is one of the most important archives in the country for research on this period of British history, and it provides students with the opportunity to analyse this material in the archive itself. Several teaching sessions will take place in the archive. It also draws on material from Warwick Library's Sivanandan race relations collection and on books, magazines, newspapers, social surveys, political speeches, government reports, television, and music from the decade, as well as later literary representation.
 

Britain in the Twentieth Century: Narrating the Nation (HI149)

This second-year undergraduate module explores the problem of narrating the history of twentieth-century Britain. It asks whether the story of Britain in the twentieth century is best understand as the making, unmaking, and remaking of the nation. It examines the roles of social change, war, Empire, culture, and politics in the construction of the nation. It assesses the extent to which class, gender, and race divided as well as united the British people. It considers the relationship between British identity and that of the four constituent nations of the United Kingdom, and it concludes with examination of the roles of history and the heritage industry in the narration of the nation.
 

Corruption: Concept and Practice in Britain and its Empire, c.1600-1835 (HI979)

This MA module investigates the concept, practice and representation of corruption in Britain and its empire during the seventeenth, eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. It asks students to consider corruption in theoretical terms (using research from other disciplines in the social sciences and modern discussions where appropriate) and explores a series of different types of corruption (political, economic, sexual and moral, linguistic) as well as the language and visual depiction of corruption.
 

Culture, Society, and Religion in Renaissance Venice (HI985)

This MA module is taught in Venice, and gives students a unique opportunity to study the history of a great Mediterranean city while living in it. The module provides an introduction to the methodological and theoretical issues involved in researching and writing on Renaissance and early modern social, cultural, and religious history, with a specific focus on Venice between c.1450 and c.1600. The module addresses a variety of themes of central importance to the study of early modern history and introduces students to current trends in approach and topic in this field. A particular theme of the module is how this period in Venetian history was characterised by currents of disorder and attempts to impose control, from both above and below, in the spheres of cultural, social, and religious life, and in the urban environment from the parish to the piazza. The module serves both to encourage students to think in theoretical terms about the ways in which the society and culture of an early modern European city such as Venice can be historically reconstructed and to expose them to the opportunities and problems presented by a variety of evidence. These sources include letters, diaries, dialogues, poems, broadsheets, pamphlets, chronicles, histories, maps, engravings, woodcuts, architecture, paintings, sculpture, as well as legislation and court records. The module uses insights from neighbouring disciplines including anthropology, gender studies, history of art, law, literary criticism, sociology, and social theory.
 

Deviance and Non-Conformity (HI266)

This second-year undergraduate module focuses on the experience of minorities and other marginal groups in Europe between the thirteenth and seventeenth centuries. It explores how and why certain groups came to be persecuted by pre-modern society because of differences in appearance, behaviour, religion, sexuality or lifestyle. Through the study of these groups students are able to develop a critical appreciation of the social mores and values of pre-modern European society, and to acquire the analytical skills to interrogate their subject. The module is structured around a series of case studies in order to test established hypotheses about exclusion, prejudice and scapegoating. An engagement with historiographical debates and primary sources forms a central component of the module.
 

Facing the Other: European Encounters with the New World, 1500-1650 (HI31B)

This final-year undergraduate module is interdisciplinary in approach, and employs a variey of approaches to research, including social and cultural history, economic history, colonial studies, literary studies and art history, as well as history of medicine and the sciences. It employs a range of primary sources from both Europe and the Americas. When Columbus and his crew arrived in the Caribbean in 1492 he unleashed a series of events that were literally world-changing. The European ‘discovery’ of the Americas led to the such disparate events as the Atlantic slave trade and the roast potato. It also posed a conceptual challenge to Amerindians and Europeans alike. European explorers such as Columbus were confronted with something of which they had no prior knowledge. A completely new world had to be incorporated into their cosmological, geographical, medical, botanical, zoological and anthropological understanding. The ‘shock of the new’ was no less challenging for the many indigenous cultures the Europeans encountered in the Americas. Much like their European counterparts, they, too, tried to come to terms with the unknown by using categories and suppositions couched in and inherent to the mentalities of their own cultures. This module looks at the many ways in which this newness was recognized, confronted and explained by European and New World authors. Students follow the slow (and often painful) process of encountering the new, and explore the various attempts Europeans and Amerindians made to understand and interpret the unfamiliar.
 

Feminism, Politics, and Social Change in Modern Britain (HI31X)

This final-year undergraduate module provides students with an overview of the politics of feminism and its relationship to changing gender roles in modern Britain. It introduces students to themes key to feminism within a wider historical context, especially class, race and sexuality. The module looks at religion and secularisation; the rise of the birth control movement and debates over freedom of sexual expression; tensions of class and race within feminist movements; transnational feminist connections; and the role of the imperial context in shaping feminist ideas and identities. Its broad chronological reach aims to overcome artificial distinctions between ‘first’, ‘second’ and ‘third’ waves, and encourages students to identify and historicise common currents within feminist thought, as well as turning points and ruptures.
 

Florence and Venice in the Renaissance (HI320)

This final-year undergraduate module is taught in Venice, and involves the study of broad-ranging themes in a comparative and interdisciplinary context. It examines developments in two major Italian states and draws on insights from neighbouring disciplines such as art history, anthropology, and economics. After examining the concept of the Renaissance, this option analyses the cultural, economic, political, social, and religious history of Florence and Venice from the late fourteenth to the late sixteenth century. The module also sets developments in Florence and Venice against those in the princely courts of northern and central Italy. Whilst focusing on Italian states, the module also considers issues with a wider resonance. These issues include gender, charity, violence, ritual, church reform, and cultural and economic change. The module makes use of an extensive range of primary sources.
 

Forms and Fashions in Italian Intellectual Culture (IT113)

This first-year undergraduate module considers how should we 'read' a literary or visual text? What are the considerations of form, audience, and context that enable us to make sense of a cultural product? In what ways should a performance be understood differently from something fixed on the page? This module will address these questions by taking into consideration four representative avenues of expression in Italian culture, namely cinema, short stories, lyric poetry and theatre-writing. This module will therefore refine your abilities to analyse specific genres, but it will also give you a taste of different periods of Italian culture, from the Renaissance to the present.
 

Foundations of the Hispanic World 1: Building Nation, Building Empire (HP206)

This second-year undergraduate module explores the construction of cultures in Spain and the 'New' World’. It begins with an investigation of the textual, musical and visual circulation of literature in a pre-literate age, through close reading of selected texts from the medieval Spanish Cantiga and Romance traditions. You will be introduced to the foundations of Spanish literary language, and gain an understanding of the tensions between cultures, faiths, genders and social classes that characterise the emergence of the modern Spanish state. This perspective is then developed through an exploration of Spanish writings on the discovery of the 'New World', which will explore the role and importance of the historical archive, testimonies and historical novel in Latin American Culture, with a specific examination of the New Historical Latin American Novel.
 

Foundations of the Hispanic World 2: Reality, Magic, and Desire in the Baroque Era (HP207)

This second-year undergraduate module considers key questions that explore canonical works of 17th Century Spain. We begin with some of Cervantes' brilliant short stories, the Novelas ejemplares, and then read part one of Don Quixote. We will also examine Cervantes' writing in the context of ideas of the 'New World’, and of magic and the marvellous, and we identify the imaginative strategies that he uses to challenge the bounds of plausibility and entertain his readers. In the second part of the module we explore the themes of honour and society in Golden-Age drama. We read the original play that created Don Juan stereotype, and consider challenges to authority and the treatment of the social position of women in works Lope de Vega and Calderón de la Barca. Lastly, we finish with a consideration of the motif of the world as a stage by reading Calderón’s masterpiece, La vida es sueño.
 

Galleons and Caravans: Global Connections 1300-1800 (HI163)

This second-year undergraduate module introduces the global history of the early modern world. We are now living in a time of great divisions and misunderstandings between West and East. This module addresses this by investigating the history of cultural connections between between Europe and Asia, especially in religion, art, science, trade and consumption habits. The module follows the circulation of people, knowledge and goods between the two continents, and compares empires and great cities. The module will be set within the theoretical framework of global history. Topics include diasporas, material culture, the Chinese and Ottoman empires, cities, the silk route, the Manila galleons, maps and travellers.
 

Gender in Europe 1350-1650 (HI391)

This final-year undergraduate module considers how in recent years notions of gender have been fundamentally altering how we view the period from 1350 to 1650. Although an emerging field, the historiography of gender has already undergone significant development and this module considers these changes. The module discusses similarities and differences in the role of gender across Europe (including Britain) and over time. The module is based on visual and written sources as well as recent books and articles.
 

Georgian Britain (HI145)

This second-year undergraduate module looks back now to the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries as the time of origins of modernity: commercial and industrial revolutions; demographic transition; imperial expansion; the rise of working-class and artisan radicalism; and the emergence of the bourgeois public sphere. But this time of origins and transitions was also cast in contradictions and conflict: riches and poverty; markets and slaves; gender divisions; private life and public virtue; consumers and criminals; enlightened rationalism and religious enthusiasm, oligarchic government and popular radicalism. The eighteenth century was the great time of possibilities, opportunities, new directions and identities, but no certainties of what these were to be. This module provides an overview of these and other themes of a society creating itself anew.
 

Germany in the Age of the Reformation (HI242)

This second-year undergraduate module focuses on the socio-cultural impact of the Reformation. Particular attention is given to dissemination processes (role of print; visual propaganda; forging Protestant Churches and identities), the effect on different social groups (Urban / Rural Reformation; Peasants' War; gender relations) and confessional tensions (Radical Reformation; Catholics; Jews). The module concludes with an assessment of the long-term legacies of the German Reformation.
 

History of Germany, from Unification to Reunification (HI136)

This second-year undergraduate module examines the history of Germany from the bourgeois revolutions of the mid-19th century to German reunification at the end of the 20th century. In the approach to this period, students consider past and present historical perspectives ranging from German particularlism, the argument that the German nation followed a "special path", to cultural studies approaches. The aim is the exploration of the contours and controversies that make up German history. In this pursuit, students have the chance to conduct their own research and write a piece of Germany's history.
 

History of Russia Since 1881 (HI107)

This second-year undergraduate module develops themes of political, social, cultural and economic history raised in the core module in the context of Russian history since 1881. The module is divided into four sets of historical questions - those relating to the origins of the Russian revolution; to its course from c.1900-1921; to its immediate consequences in the rise of Stalinism; and to Russia's attempts to deal with the legacy of Stalinism from 1953 to the early twenty-first century. Attention will be given to political, social, economic and cultural aspects of these questions.

Individual Polis and Society (HI2A5)

This second year module will introduce students to a range of long-eighteenth and early-nineteenth century texts in which there is sustained reflection and commentary on the individual, the polity, and an emerging conception of society. In doing so, this module raises broader philosophical questions about the construction of identity, character and virtue, political realism and idealism, and relativism and individualism. The module also involves students in reflecting on the changes in styles of painting, architecture and fashion and linking this to the core themes. The emphasis of the module is on how as historians we should approach some of the major pieces of writing of the period, both the more and the less philosophical. Consequently, a core component of the module is encouraging a close reading of the texts, coupling this with raising questions about the importance of historical context in generating and reflecting critically on such readings. The module is structured thematically, taking conceptions of the individual, then the polis, then society; but within those themes it is structured chronologically, allowing students to have a sense of the increasing interaction of different lines of argument.
 

Ireland 1848-1972: A Political and Social History (HI143)

This second-year undergraduate module provides students with a critical understanding of the most important political, social and economic developments in nineteenth and twentieth century Ireland. Students develop an ability to identify, assess and engage with historiography specific to this module, gain the ability to elucidate the social and economic context in which Irish nationalism and Irish unionism developed, and gain the ability to apply broad historical concepts in specific casesan ability to research and produce a coherent written analysis of selected topics based on accurate use of secondary material.
 

Kill or Cure: The History of Medicine and Health (HI176)

This first-year undergraduate module introduces students to the global history of medicine. We will cover a wide thematic range -- from medical systems to medical surveillance, from empire to AIDS -- and the module's chronology therefore spans the modern and early modern periods. Geographically too, this module will take students from Europe and North America, to Burma, China, East Africa, India, Palestine, and beyond.
 

Knowledge, Nature and Power in Early Modern Europe (HI395)

This final-year undergraduate module offers a cultural history of the European investigation into nature during a period that is usually known as the ‘Scientific Revolution’. It introduces the grand narratives and their ‘heroes’ as in older histories of science and medicine, but also encourages students to critically rethink the old categories. The shifting frameworks of ideas are not therefore the main focus of this module. Instead it aims at contextualising various European scientific endeavours between 1500-1700, and discussing them within the wider landscape of early modern European culture (i.e. discoveries and conquest, court culture and patronage, or trade, commerce and consumption). Of particular concern is the history of the life sciences, frequently ignored in general histories of science and medicine. The chronology of the module allows students to focus on two particular manifestations of the early modern investigation of nature: first, the restoration and renewal of the accomplishments of the ancients during the 16th century influenced by humanist thought, and second, the 17th century forging ahead with professedly novel and ambitious programmes of scientific endeavour, exemplified by natural philosophers such as Bacon or Descartes. The history of medicine and science is a particular focus, but the module also covers social history, economic history, literary studies, art history, and anthropology.
 

Medicine and Science in the Enlightenment (HI921)

This MA module explores ideas and practices of science and medicine in Britain and western Europe from c.1450 to c.1800, a period which covers the so-called 'Scientific Revolution'. A particular concern of the module is to set these ideas and practices in their contexts - social, cultural, religious, political, etc. In addition, the impact of Europe's encounter with the wider world is also examined.
 

Memory's Migrations: Cultural Exchanges in the Hispanic World (HP304)

This final-year undergraduate module considers the questions 'Why is memory such an important component of our view of the past today?' and 'In what ways is the Hispanic world driving and shaping global memory discourses rather than simply responding to them?' This module provides answers from three Hispanic contexts: Argentina, Chile and Spain. We will adopt a comparative and transnational focus to examine: (i) major theories of cultural memory, (ii) key memory debates that have arisen in each of the countries studied, and (iii) the manner in which these circulate within the wider Hispanic world, influencing and cross-fertilizing one another. Works studied include novels and films. Students with an interest in the relationships between history, politics, and cultural expression may find this module particularly rewarding, since it is concerned with the ways in which public and civil discourse addresses and modifies approaches to difficult and traumatic pasts in a variety of contemporary contexts.
 

Nation and Memory in Eastern Europe c.1848-1989 (HI260)

This second-year undergraduate module considers different concepts and definitions of nation and nationalism. How can we explain the strong emotional appeal of nations? Why were so many people in the past and are in the present willing to die for their nation? In Autumn Term students gain an overview of Russian, Ukrainian and Polish history from the 'swamps' to the end of the 19th century, focusing on key periods, key events and cultural influences which shaped the way Polish, Ukrainian and Russian nation builders in the 19th century 'imagined' their nations. Russians, Poles and Ukrainians represent three different types of nations: the dominant nation of a multiethnic empire (Russians); a so called 'historical nation' with a long state tradition which existed for 123 years under Russian, Austrian and Prussian/German rule (Poles); a so called “unhistorical nation” which was denied nationhood and statehood by its more powerful neighbours (Ukrainians). In Spring Term the module concentrates on the period between 1800 and the present (with a special focus on 1848 - 1989) and analyses cultural 'building blocks' and the role of historical memory in Polish, Ukrainian and Russian nation building. The ideas and methods developed in studying these three nations enables students to also analyse other nations. There are for example many similarities between the English and the Russians as 'imperial nations'. Students hear about the importance of symbols, national narratives and different cultural products for nation building, and learn how to analyse national operas and folk music, national literature and history paintings. Other important topics are war remembrance (especially after the Great War and the Second World War), the connection between war and nation and the experience of common suffering. At the end of the year students will have gained a good knowledge of Ukrainian, Polish and Russian history, and be able to identify different types of nation building.
 

Politics of Protest in Europe, 1968-1989 (HI32A)

This final-year undergraduate module takes a close look at both the protest waves and revolutions of 1968 and 1989, as well as at radical grassroots politics in between. The module encourages students to think of European history during the twentieth century in transnational terms that cut across the Iron Curtain. Students discuss the themes of the module – such as the revolts of 1968, politicized countercultures, the peace and environmental movements, or sexual politics – in a transnational way that looks at both Eastern and Western Europe. A second key goal of the module is to explore if and how the contours of the political itself changed in these movements, as categories like subjectivity and personal feelings, and subjects like sexuality and the environment gained prominence in the movements.
 

Politics, Literature and Ideas in Stuart England: c.1600-c.1715 (HI271)

This second-year undergraduate interdisciplinary module examines the interaction between the politics, literature and ideas of the long seventeenth century, and as a result should appeal to all types of historians, political scientists and literature students, as well as those interested in cultural studies and intellectual history. Broadly speaking the module is split in half, with the first term being structured around the writing of four major authors: Francis Bacon, Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, and Jonathan Swift. The second half of the module takes a thematic approach to literatue and ideas through the Stuart period, which may include: biography, autobiography and diaries; censorship of the press; religious and political radicalism; the new, experimental science; news and its different forms; erotica and pornography; corruption; satire and polemic; radical consciences; women’s writing; republicanism; and utopias. There is some degree of student selection of themes to narrow the scope.
 

Psychological Subjects: Identity, Health and Culture in Twentieth Century Britain (HI906)

This MA module explores the popularisation and influences of psychology in twentieth-century Britain. It draws in particular on themes developed in the module tutor’s Psychological Subjects (2006). Each week students consider one of the themes of this book. The module begins with a focus on the popularisation of psychology and psychoanalysis at the start of the century, inviting reflection on continuities with Victorian phenomena such as Mesmerism, Phrenology, and Spiritualism, and questioning the centrality of Freud and psychoanalysis in traditional accounts. It then turns to the emergence of the discipline and profession of psychology at the turn of the century, to the influence of psychology within education, industry, and healthcare, and to the role of psychology in relation to war and politics. Finally it concludes with the subject of psychology and sex, and the role of psychology and a culture of therapy in the emergence of what some have called a culture of narcissism in the last decades of the century.
 

Radical Politics and the Struggle for Democracy in Europe, 1918-1939 (HI276)

This second-year undergraduate module discusses radical political movements, their struggle against each other and democratic societies. Students inquire why they succeeded in some countries, while democracy could prevail in others. Finally, students consider how radical movements that took power implemented their politics. While the module draws upon national case studies, it aims at understanding radical politics in the interwar period as a genuinely European phenomenon. Themes include the Russian revolution and its impact on the European working-class movement; the rise of fascist and other radical rightist movements; the struggle for democracy in the era of Popular Fronts, and implementation of fascist regimes in Italy and Germany. Further national case studies include Hungary, Austria, France and Spain.
 

Religious Conflict and Civil War in France c.1560-1600 (HI388)

This final-year undergraduate module focuses on the experience of war in sixteenth-century France from the perspective of local communities as well as the crown and the nobility. It draws on a wide variety of contemporary sources in English translation including correspondence, memoirs, legislation, petitions and prints. The aim is to develop an understanding of the circumstances which led to and perpetuated civil war and why repeated attempts to establish peaceful confessional co-existence failed. Students develop the critical skills to engage with current historiographical debates, and are given the opportunity to write an extended piece of assessed work using both primary and secondary sources.
 

Renaissance Rivalries: Courts and Learning (IT322)

This final-year undergraduate module considers how did Italy change after the French king Charles VIII marched through the peninsula unopposed in 1494? How did its art, literature, religion and science depart from previous models during the sixteenth century? And how did new linguistic standards, contexts of learning, and patterns of patronage affect the work of figures such as Michelangelo, Machiavelli, Ariosto and Galileo? This module will address these and other questions, contextualizing the Italian developments in the Cinquecento with broader cultural changes across Europe, including the rise of the vernacular and the Protestant Reformation.
 

Stalinism in Europe 1928-1953 (HI31E)

This final-year undergraduate module examines the phenomenon of Stalinism between 1928 (the beginning of the “Revolution from above”) and 1953 (Stalin’s death). After a discussion of the transformation of the economy, society and culture the focus is on the social and cultural history of Stalinism as a ‘civilisation’. The Soviet leadership attempted to implement a socialist way of life and to construct a socialist identity. The consequences of this attempt for everyday life are considered as are central mythologies of Stalinist propaganda and the ‘culture of violence’. Students also discuss how far Stalinism was a purely Russian/Soviet phenomenon, and look at the consequences of Stalinism for the international communist movement and for the sovietisation of Eastern Europe after 1945. Students examine theories on Stalinism and how the Cold War affected the interpretation of Stalinism, and discuss the totalitarian approach, the revisionist approaches of the 1980’s and the post-revisionist discussions of the recent period. Students examine primary sources, including official materials such as political speeches and propaganda and sources such as private letters, diaries, and memoirs.
 

Subverting Dictatorship: Trauma and Resistance in Post-War Spanish Fiction and Film (HP307)

This is a final-year undergraduate module. What was life like in Spain under dictatorship? How did writers and film directors respond to the repressive Franco Regime? This module examines Spanish fiction and film since 1939, with a particular focus on narrative modes of representing trauma and of subverting socio-political realities. From the shock and trauma of a child’s perspective of war in Ana María Matute, to the use of psychoanalytical frameworks in Luis Martín-Santos, Carlos Saura, and Juan Goytisolo, through to the anticipation of democracy in Víctor Erice, we explore ways in which Spanish novels and films of the period attacked and subverted the Franco Regime’s ideology. We shall see how, right into the democratic period with Carmen Martín Gaite and Javier Marías, the legacy of the Franco state still preoccupied writers, even as they were looking beyond Spain to new horizons in North America. You will be encouraged to focus on close textual readings in order to understand how fictional and historical narratives may intersect in different media, and how cultural and intertextual echoes may function contextually as strategies for subverting prevailing socio-political norms.
 

The Birth of Modern Society? Britain 1660-1720 (HI31G)

This final-year undergraduate module examines how far the period 1660 to 1720 – the age of Isaac Newton, Daniel Defoe and Jonathan Swift – marked a period of transition from an ‘early modern’ to a ‘modern society’. Contemporaries saw themselves both looking back into a recent history of civil war and, self-conciously, forward to a 'modern' world. This was the period in which ‘Britain’ was formed (after England’s union with Scotland in 1707), and in which the impact of two major revolutions was assimilated. Students study, through a close engagement with primary sources, the emergence of a free press, the power of public opinion, intense party rivalries, novel forms of journalism, an innovative literary culture that saw the birth of the novel, a scientific revolution and an early enlightenment in ideas and beliefs. The module explores claims that in politics, religion, the economy, science, ideas, nationhood, culture and society, Britain witnessed transformative change, the legacy of which we still face today.
 

The British in the World 1600-1700: Travel, Exile and Empire (HI33U)

This final-year undergraduate module examines the way in which inhabitants of the British Isles explored, experienced and thought about the wider world through the 17th century, and the impact these exposures brought upon their conception of themselves. A rich line of recent historiography has broken down old notions of English/Scottish insularity within this period, and highlighted the centrality of a wider international context to early modern British history. This module concentrates on travel, exile and imperial aspiration under the rule of the Stuart monarchs, and examine the debates engendered by these experiences within the British Isles. The module programme begins with an investigation of the early modern idea of travel, and its role within patterns of learning and scholarship. The second strand of the module investigates the extent to which the English and Scottish could be considered 'Europeans', charted through the encounters of Protestant and Catholic travellers with the different states and kingdoms of the continent, and the ideas drawn out of their time abroad.
 

The British Problem: Empire, Conflict and National Identities 1558-1714 (HI275)

This second-year undergraduate early modern option module explores the attempts of Early Modern monarchs and governments to gain hegemony over the British Isles and establish an imperial dominion beyond the Atlantic. Moving from the accession of Elizabeth to the death of Queen Anne, the module incorporates the ‘plantation’ of Ireland and America, the Civil Wars, the 1688 Revolution and the 1707 Act of Union. The module focuses on the connections between the kingdoms, and show how relations across the British Isles were affected by conflicts over the powers of crown and church, and challenged by splits between rival religious communities. These tensions, as the module highlights, were grafted onto ancient national, cultural and ethnic faultlines. The module looks at how the experience of civil war, unrest and revolution took place within a larger international setting, studying the impact of civil and religious divisions on the development of the overseas empire, and highlighting the competing European affinities that impinged upon subjects of the three kingdoms.
 

The Enlightenment (HI174)

This first-year undergraduate interdisciplinary module introduces students to the Enlightenment, a movement of ideas c.1650-c.1800 that has been seen as laying the foundations of modernity. The Enlightenment embraced science, religion, politics, economics, exploration, collecting, literature, print, morality, international relations, sexuality and art. It affected much of Europe but also Europe's colonies, seeking to rid the world of what it saw as superstition and ignorance and to replace them with reason and progress. That Enlightenment 'project' shaped the British, American and French revolutions but remains as controversial today as it was in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. This module is delivered by a team of lecturers drawn from within the History department but also, reflecting the multi-disciplinary nature of the Enlightenment itself, from the departments of English and Comparative Literary studies, Art History, French, German and Law.
 

The European World, 1500-1750 (HI203)

This second-year undergraduate module provides a broad survey of European developments in the early modern period. This module examines major themes in the political, religious, cultural, economic and social history of early modern Europe as well as paying attention to Europe’s encounter with non-European societies. It concentrates on several key aspects of the period: social and economic structures and changes; the Protestant and Catholic Reformations and their consequences; changes in elite and popular culture, including the Scientific Revolution; European contacts with Asia and the Americas; problems of governance; and the development of ‘absolutism’. Particular national developments are examined, but these are placed in a broad and comparative context.
 

The Furies of Revolution (HI33Q)

This final-year undergraduate module is a comparative study of the French and Russian Revolutions, spanning the eighteenth, nineteenth, and twentieth centuries. Students compare and contrast common themes from the two revolutions, including topics such as social classes and their role, the impact of war, violence, political mobilisation, political actors and parties, propaganda, terror, and high culture. Students also consider contemporary views and memories of the revolutions, as well as focusing on how politics was affected by the ghosts of the French and Russian revolutions stalking European and World society in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
 

The History of Modern France (HI172)

This second-year undergraduate module introduces students to modern French History, from 1750 to 1998. Beginning with the Old Regime and the Enlightenment, students examine France's tumultuous transformation from a dynastic regime based on social hierarchy and privilege to a constitutional republic based on freedom and equality. Several themes are treated: secularisation, revolution, empire, republicanism, liberalism, industrialisation, class, gender, consumerism, total war, fascism, decolonisation and pluralism. Through an energetic engagement with primary and secondary sources, students are encouraged to formulate their own questions and arguments about these processes.
 

The Holocaust: An Integrative History (HI31Z)

This final-year undergraduate module introduces students to Nazi Germany’s project to murder Europe’s Jews and other minorities during the Second World War. The primary focus is to study these genocides and to deepen understanding of events and experiences, as well as to introduce different scholarly interpretations and themes. The other goal of this module is to study the origins and implementation of the Holocaust from the contrasting perspectives of perpetrators, bystanders, and victims. The module focuses on the effect of historical events on individuals, but also how individuals made sense of and reacted to these events. Moreover, this module considers how violence and trauma are narrated, remembered, and reflected in film and literature.
 

The Medieval World (HI127)

This first-year undergraduate module provides a thematic introduction to European history of the later medieval and Renaissance periods. Original documents form an integral part of the module, and students develop their computing skills in consulting them. The module syllabus includes Feudalism, economic life, religious life and spirituality, human relations and the family, intellectual life and education, visual culture, politics and war, Europe and the wider world, the crusades and the age of discovery.
 

The Renaissance in Europe (HI267)

This second-year undergraduate module encourages students to explore different methodological and theoretical approaches to the Renaissance across Europe. The module is interdisciplinary and discusses art and architecture as well as texts by Petrarch, Machiavelli, Castiglione, Erasmus, Thomas More, Rabelais, Palladio, Vasari, Montaigne, Shakespeare, and Cervantes. Seminars examine the following topics: defining the Renaissance; education and learning; the self in the Renaissance; Renaissance cities; courts and courtiers; princes and republics; Renaissance and Reform; gender and race; satire and subversion.
 

The Russian Revolution 1914-1921 (HI317)

The final-year undergraduate module offers students an opportunity to explore the history of the Russian Revolution in great depth. The module covers the political, social, economic and cultural history of the Russian Revolution examining the impact of war; the February Revolution; the events of 1917; the Civil War; War Communism ; the uprisings of 1920-1 and concludes with the Tenth Party Congress and the Kronstadt rebellion. It is divided into two halves - The collapse of the old order; the emergence of the new Soviet order.
 

The Shapes of Knowledge in Early Modern Italy (IT904)

This MA module aims to explore how disciplines such as poetry, painting, theology, philosophy, and music are constructed and valorized as forms of knowledge in late medieval and Renaissance Italy. What factors are involved in such constructions? What are the various relationships between these different disciplines? How do they borrow and distinguish themselves from one another? How and for what reasons do their interrelationships evolve and change over time? These are the principal questions that will form the core of this module as students study a wide range of interconnected topics.
 

'The Troubles' Northern Ireland, 1968-99 (HI385)

This final-year undergraduate module examines the historical background to the recent conflict in Northern Ireland, and explores the social, economic and political context of 'the Troubles' drawing on both secondary and also a wide array of primary sources including government reports and legislation, memoir materials and autobiographies, newspapers and film. Students examine the ideological basis of unionism and nationalism and interrogate constructions of national identity. The module explores how their treatment by the new state was the major formative experience for Northern nationalists; the emergence and developments of the civil rights movement, the rise of paramilitary organisations, the role of women within nationalism and unionism, the representation of 'The Troubles' in the media, together with assessing the role of the police and security forces. The place of political prisoners and the impact of the hunger strikes on local and national politics is also examined. Students analyse the iconography in republican and loyalist murals, and explore issues surrounding parading. Students also assess the Good Friday Agreement of 10 April 1998 and evaluate the peace process and the contribution made to that process by individuals, community groups, political parties and national leaders.
 

The World of the Tavern in Early Modern Europe (HI390)

This final-year undergraduate module examines developments in a number of different European countries (mainly the German lands, France and England) and draws on insights from neighbouring disciplines such as art and legal history, anthropology, theology and sociology. The module uses one of the most prominent social centres in early modern Europe to illustrate key themes and processes of the period, such as patterns of sociability, the growth of regulation, communication networks, confessional identity, incidence of crime, gender roles and alcohol consumption. It approaches pre-modern social conditions through the analysis of an ubiquitous leisure activity and highlights tensions between religious doctrines, secular laws and popular culture.
 

Topics in Renaissance Thought and Culture: In the Footsteps of Machiavelli (IT324)

This is a final-year undergraduate module. The complex and elusive personality of Niccolò Machiavelli (1469-1527) continues to provoke debate. Possibly the most well-known of Renaissance political thinkers today, Machiavelli achieved notoriety for maintaining, in The Prince, that ‘It is better for a ruler to be feared than to be loved’ and for apparently supporting the maxim that, in politics, ‘the end justifies the means.’ These ideas provoked virulent debates throughout and beyond the sixteenth century. Many struggled to understand whether Machiavelli was a republican or rather a cynical adviser to despotic rulers. This module will be divided in two parts: in the first part we shall read the main works by Machiavelli, with an emphasis on their sources, commonalities, and divergences; in the second part we shall study the reactions of other Renaissance thinkers and writers (such as Guicciardini, Bodin, Botero, and others) to Machiavelli’s political doctrines, in order to weigh his impact outside of Italy and after his death. These sixteenth-century discussions will be studied with a strong emphasis on contemporary historical and political contexts.
 

Violence in Early Modern Europe (HI971)

This MA module provides an introduction to the methodological and theoretical issues involved in researching and writing on violence in Europe between c.1500 and c.1700. It encourage students to think in theoretical terms about the ways in which the experience of violence can be historically reconstructed and to expose them to the opportunities and problems presented by a variety of evidence. These sources include letters, diaries, broadsheets, pamphlets, newspapers, chronicles, histories, songs, plays, engravings, woodcuts, and paintings, as well as legislation and court records. The module draws on insights from neighbouring disciplines including anthropology, gender studies, history of art, law, literary criticism, politics, sociology and social theory.
 

War Experiences and Memorial Culture in Europe, 1914 to the Present (HI954)

This MA module introduces students to the history of experience (“Erfahrungsgeschichte”) and familiarises them with concepts of collective memory and remembrance. The ways in which individuals, groups and nations tried to come to terms with experiences of war in the twentieth century and what shaped their different experiences and memories will be analysed. The focus of seminar discussions and core readings will be on both World Wars, but students explore a wider range of 20th- and 21st- century military conflicts in their assessed essays if they wish. The module has a comparative approach and covers both Western and Eastern Europe/Russia. How do different cultural and social backgrounds prefigure war experiences and how are war, suffering and death memorialised? What do the different ways of memorialising the war tell us about nations and their national cultures? How different are war experiences and the memorialisation of war in and after the First and the Second World War?