You will study four core modules:
Global Histories: Comparisons and Connections
This Autumn core module offers an introductory survey of global history arranged in a chronological manner. It draws on chronological depth unique in the UK and considerable regional breadth in order to present you with a truly global perspective. Content will range from the decline and fall of ancient empires through the spread of new religions across the multiple shifting political formations in Afro-Eurasia, to early modern voyages of exploration and intellectual movements, and the age of revolutions which gave birth to nations in the midst of global political ruptures. The emphasis is on providing points of cross-cultural, cross-regional comparison and to develop your awareness of key connections, such as trade networks, cultural flows and exchanges, forms of migration, shifting political structures and the emergence of modern states, nations and empires.
Seminar topics will typically include (subject to staff availability): Decline and Fall of Ancient Empires; Empire and its Holy Cities: Caliphate and the East; The Silk Routes; The Long Fourteenth Century: The Rise and Eclipse of a Pre-Western World System; Age of Exploration; India from Colony to Empire; Empire, Development and Decolonisation; Neoliberal Globalisation.
Making Sense of the World: Themes in Global History
This Spring core module is conceived around some of the major processes that shaped history and the key concepts that historians use to make sense of the past. Using case studies of considerable regional breadth and chronological depth, you will familiarise yourself with the building blocks of past and present societies. These key processes and themes include: the importance of the environment in human history; issues of space, geography and the formation of border regions; time and temporality; religion and notions of value; and historically and culturally diverse constructions of subjectivity and social order including gender, sexuality, class, race, and ethnicity. The module ends with an in-depth look at a key text bringing many of these themes together, Amitav Ghosh’s In an Antique Land.
Seminar topics will typically include (subject to staff availability): Boundaries and Geographical Space in Global History; Environmental Humanities: Energy and Politics in the Age of the Anthropocene; Religion and the Market: Ideas of Value in the Pre-Modern World; Race, Ethnicity and Social Hierarchy; Gender and Sexuality in Global History; Material Cultures; Temporality, Empire and Globe.
This module introduces you to major developments in historical approaches and to some of the major schools of, and recent directions in, historical research. We will focus on the application of ideas to historical practice then and now.
Research Methods and Skills: Dissertation Preparation
This module prepares you for your dissertation research. You will be expected to produce a short dissertation proposal and you will choose a tutor who will supervise your dissertation preparation work (for a list of tutors,see above). You will have one-to-one meetings with your supervisor, but you will also attend general sessions on research skills.
You will also choose two optional modules from a range which may include (subject to staff availability):
- Cities of Paradise and Empire in the Islamic World: From the 15th Century to the Present Day
- Before Globalization? Afro-Eurasian World History, 500-1800.
- From Empire to Colony: Indian Society, Politics and Economy, c. 1757-1885.
- Conflict in the Modern Middle East
- Hidden from History: Homosexuality through History
- Piracy, Plunder, Peoples and Exploitation: English Exploration in the Tudor Period
- The Age of Energy: Global Histories of Hopes, Needs, and Carbon
- The Mirror of Modernity: Global Histories of Photography
- Globalisation Since 1945
- West Africa and the Atlantic Slave Trade
- History and Politics of South Africa
- Slavery and Freedom in Twentieth Century Africa
- Before Postcolonialism: Europe and Its Empires
- Postcolonial Theory
Alternatively, you may wish to choose a double special subject module. The options available will typically include:
- Britain, the Slave Trade and Anti-slavery in the Late Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth Centuries
- The Mongols and China
- The Lure of the Modern: Defining China from New Culture Movement to Cultural Revolution, 1910s-1970s.
- Modernity, Masculinity and Revolution in Twentieth Century Egypt
- Game without Thrones: Saga Age Iceland c.900-c.1250
- Imperialism and the Global Environment: Europe and the Transformation of the Tropical World, 1850-present
- Building Nations in the “Bloodlands”. A History of Conflict, Occupation, and Independence in East Central Europe ca. 1880 – 1953
- The Age of Discovery
- The Russian Revolution, 1917