Learning outcomes: after completing the course, students will have:
- knowledge and understanding of historical developments related to the course topic;
- knowledge of the historiography within the course topic;
- familiarity with the diverse ways in which historical knowledge of the course topic can be relevant to their own job market prospects;
- a skills set enabling them to think, act and communicate at an academic level and in line with academic standards of conduct ('academic integrity').
Learning objectives and skills: after completing the course, students will be able to:
- explore a broad historical or historiographical topic in depth;
- critically evaluate different interpretations and formulate their own viewpoint;
- present a well-formulated discourse analysis both orally and in writing;
- collaborate with fellow students on a group presentation;
- link knowledge of historical thinking on the course topic to their own job market prospects;
- connect historical knowledge of the course topic to modern-day social and political issues
- work in accordance with academic standards.
This is the first course of Specialisation 2: Political Conflict in Modern Europe (English track History).|
Political history studies the conflicts about the organization of society. The nature and structure of the state form a crucial aspect of these conflicts. The state is not only the most important organisation, exerting the greatest possible influence on social life, but it is also the arena in which different social groups compete for political power.
Nowadays, the state governs the life of its citizens from cradle to grave: it builds roads, provides healthcare and welfare support, regulates the economy, provides education, and protects the environment. This has not always been the case. How did the state actually acquire its power? And what has enabled states to become the dominant form of political organisation, replacing other political organisations such as cities and empires? How did the nation and the state become entangled? Did nationalism precede the emergence of states, or did the state instead breed nationalism?
This course answers such questions by providing an overview of the rise of the modern state. We also introduce comparative method in historical research. By studying the theories and practices of state and nation formation in Europe from the 18th century to today, this course provides an introduction to the political history of modern Europe.