Level of study Third/Final year
Credit value 20
Pre-requisite modules Where students take this course as a 10 credit unit they will be expected to undertake self directed study of the material not covered from the readin
This module studies a variety of developments that potentially challenge contemporary democracies, including the declining ability of the electoral process, political parties and welfare states to appeal to citizens, and the rise of alternative types of political protest in response. The aim of the course is to provide students with an up-to-date survey of comparative research into these developments, and to enable students to use the comparative method to conduct their own inquiries within this area. Questions to be studied include:
Do parties still play a role in democracy?
Why is support for far-right parties rising?
Has left-wing politics become redundant?
Is the welfare state in terminal decline?
Can representative democracy survive the rise of post-materialist values?
Why is political protest increasing? What effect does it have?
What role do social movements play in contemporary democracy?
Teaching and learning methods
These courses are taught by a combination of lectures, classes and directed reading.
This module is available as:
Autumn term only 10 credit unit – 3,000 word assessed essay
Spring term only 10 credit unit – 3,000 word assessed essay
Whole Year 20 credit unit – Presentation 10%, 2 x 2,000 summative essays (25%) each, plus 2 hour examination (40%).