The Civil Wars: England and Wales, 1588-1660
The Civil Wars: England and Wales, 1588-1660 2023-24
School Of History, Law And Social Sciences
Module - Semester 1
This course explores the political and religious history of England in the late sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, especially the social, cultural, economic, and intellectual fissures and tensions which shaped England in this period. It looks at the breakdown of the Elizabethan polity, the Personal Rule of Charles I, the British Civil Wars, the Regicide, the English Republic, all the way to the Restoration of Charles II.
The course concentrates upon political and religious history - but social, cultural, economic and intellectual aspects are also considered where they are relevant to the core of the course. Topics covered: The breakdown of the Elizabethan polity (1588-1629); the personal rule of Charles I (1629-1640); the Civil Wars (1640-48), the regicide of 1649, the English republic 1649-60, and the Restoration of the monarchy in 1660.
-excellent -Excellent students (A- and above) will show strong achievement across all the criteria combined with particularly impressive depths of knowledge and/or subtlety of analysis. In written work, they will support their arguments with a wealth of relevant detail/examples. They will also demonstrate an acute awareness of the relevant historiography and give an account of why the conclusions reached are important within a particular historical debate. They may show a particularly subtle approach to possible objections, nuancing their argument in the light of counter-examples, or producing an interesting synthesis of various contrasting positions. Overall, the standards of content, argument, and analysis expected will be consistently superior to top upper-second work. Standards of presentation will also be high.
-good -Good students (B- to B+) will demonstrate a solid level of achievement and depth of knowledge in all the criteria in the C- to C+ range, and will in addition exhibit constructive engagement with different types of historical writing and historiographical interpretation. Ideas will be communicated effectively and written work will include a good range of sources/reading and demonstrate a clear understanding of the issues and of the existing interpretations expressed in a well-structured, relevant, and focused argument. Students at the top end of this band will engage with and critique the ideas that they come across, and synthesise the various interpretations they find to reach their own considered conclusions. Written work will be correctly presented with references and bibliography where appropriate.
Students in this band (C- to C+) will demonstrate a satisfactory range of achievement or depth of knowledge of most parts of the module, and will make successful, if occasionally inconsistent, attempts to develop those skills appropriate to the study of History at undergraduate level. In the case of the written assessments, the answers will attempt to focus on the question, although might drift into narrative, and will show some evidence of solid reading and research. The argument might lose direction and might not be adequately clear at the bottom of this category. Written work will be presented reasonably well with only limited errors in grammar, punctuation, and referencing, and not to the extent that they obscure meaning.
-threshold -Threshold students (D- and D) will have done only a minimum of reading, and their work will often be based partly on lecture notes and/or basic textbooks. They will demonstrate in their written assessments some knowledge of at least parts of the relevant field, and will make at least partially-successful attempts to frame an argument which engages with historical controversies, but they will fail to discuss some large and vital aspects of a topic; and/or deploy only some relevant material but partly fail to combine it into a coherent whole; and/or deploy some evidence to support individual points but often fail to do so and/or show difficulty weighing evidence (thereby relying on unsuitable or irrelevant evidence when making a point). Alternatively or additionally, the presentation of the work might also be poor, with bad grammar and/or punctuation, careless typos and spelling errors, and a lack of effective and correct referencing.
- Demonstrate a wide-ranging knowledge of the overall development of England and Wales in the period 1588-1660.
- Illustrate a detailed knowledge of specific aspects of the period
- Judge between the alternative historical interpretations of the period, including current historiographic positions.
- Synthesise historical arguments about long-term developments in England and Wales, 1588-1642 (in the exam); and present detailed historical arguments about specific aspects of the period (in the exam and essay).
- Use primary sources as an integral part of historical argument
Exam (Centrally Scheduled)