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School of Politics and International Relations

POL106 Introduction to International Relations

POL106 (POL106A – Autumn, POL106B – Spring) Introduction to International Relations

Credits: 30
Semester: 1 & 2


Module Convenor: TBC
Overlap: None
Prerequisite: None

This module will provide a comprehensive survey of the historical and contemporary events which have and continue to shape the world we live in, as well as a distinct set of concepts developed to help understand this history as more than simply a disparate set of loosely connected events.

The module is organised within a framework that is partly chronological and partly thematic. It aims to equip you with a historical and conceptual knowledge such that you can account for the major historical developments in international relations beginning with the formal appropriation of vast parts of the planet under imperial rule in the mid to late 19th century, and identify and trace the roots of contemporary issues and problems in international relations.

The module will address the major developments in international relations since the 1870s including the ‘scramble for Africa’, the two world wars, the Bolshevik Revolution, Fascism, the origins and evolution of the Cold War - and its impact on different regions of the world - decolonisation and North-South economic relations, the origins of the war on terror, the financial crisis and the Arab Spring.

By the end of the module students will:
i) have a firm grasp of key events in 19th, 20th and 21st century international history from a variety of geographical vantage points
ii) should be able to account for the causes and consequences of these historical developments utilising conceptual tools unique to International Relationsiii) distinguish the significance of particular international actors and factors in shaping international relations in this period.

This module is compulsory to all BA International Relations students.

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Level: 4