Module HGH-2138:
Europe 1945-1992

Module Facts

Run by School of History, Philosophy and Social Sciences

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Semester 1

Organiser: Dr Nikolaos Papadogiannis

Overall aims and purpose

The module aims to offer an in-depth examination of politics in diverse parts of Europe between the end of the Second World War and the post-Cold War Era. It will address the ways in which democracy has manifested itself. In this vein, it will also analyse transitions from dictatorship to democracy in Southern and Eastern Europe from a transnational and comparative perspective. Finally, it will examine whether the Communist regimes in Eastern Europe during the Cold War should be described as "totalitarian".

Course content

The following is an indicative list of the topics that this module will cover:

  • The political geography of Europe;
  • Late Stalinism and de-Stalinisation;
  • Post-fascist liberal democracies:
  • West Germany and Italy;
  • Gaullism from the 1940s to the 1960s;
  • Europeanisation from above and below;
  • Communist regimes in Eastern Europe;
  • Dictatorship in Southern Europe: Franco's Spain and the Greek Junta (1967-1974);
  • Post-authoritarian transformations in Southern Europe since the mid-1970s;
  • ‘1968’ – a turning-point in post-war history?;
  • Protest in the 1970s: Feminism; Gorbachev, reform of the Soviet Union, and the collapse of communism.

Assessment Criteria

C- to C+

C+ (58%) Work will receive a C+ mark if it: shows evidence of solid reading, but remains partially superficial; covers the important aspects of the relevant field, but in some places lacks depth; advances a coherent and relevant argument; employs some evidence to back its points; and is presented reasonably well with only a few or no mistakes. It will also contain appropriate references and bibliography, which may, however, be slightly erratic and/or partially insufficient. C (55%) Work will receive a C mark if it: shows evidence of solid reading, but remains superficial; covers most of the important aspects of the relevant field, but lacks depth; advances a coherent and largely relevant argument; employs some limited evidence to back its points; and is presented reasonably well with only limited mistakes. It will also contain appropriate references and bibliography, which may, however, contain some mistakes or be slightly erratic and/or partially insufficient. C- (52%) Work will receive a C- mark if it: shows evidence of solid reading, but little knowledge of in-depth studies (for first-year work the student may not have read beyond a few standard works; at second or third year the student may not have read a good selection of journal articles and specialist monographs); covers most of the important aspects of the relevant field, but lacks depth or misses a significant area (for second- and third-year work this may mean that it fails to deploy the historical details found in specialist literature); advances a coherent, and sometimes relevant argument, but drifts away from tackling the task in hand (for example, by ordering the argument in an illogical way, becoming distracted by tangential material, or lapsing into narrative of only partial pertinence); usually employs evidence to back its points, but occasionally fails to do so or deploys an insufficient range; displays an awareness that the past can be interpreted in different ways, but may fail to get to the heart of the central scholarly debate or fully understand a key point (in second- and third-year work this may extend to a failure to discuss important subtleties or ambiguities in the evidence, or to a lack of awareness of the current state of historical debate); is reasonably well presented and contains appropriate references and bibliography, but makes some mistakes in presentation or appropriate use.

good

B+ (68%) Work will receive a B+ mark if it is consistently strong in: covering the necessary ground in depth and detail; advancing a well structured, relevant, and focused argument; analysis and deployment of an appropriate range of historical evidence and consideration of possible differences of interpretation; and is correctly presented with references and bibliography where appropriate. B (65%) Work will receive a B mark if it: is clear that it is based on solid reading; covers the necessary ground in depth and detail; advances a well-structured, relevant, and focused argument; analyses and deploys an appropriate range of historical evidence and considers possible differences of interpretation; and is correctly presented with references and bibliography where appropriate. B- (62%) Work will receive a B- mark if it: is clearly based on solid reading; covers the necessary ground in some depth and detail; advances a properly-structured, relevant, and focused argument; analyses and deploys an appropriate range of historical evidence and considers possible differences of interpretation; and is correctly presented with references and bibliography where appropriate.

threshold

D+ (48%) Work is marked D+ if it: shows evidence of acceptable amounts of reading, but does not go much beyond what was referenced in lecture notes and/or a basic textbook; covers much of the necessary ground but fails to discuss one or a few vital aspects of a topic; deploys relevant material but partly fails to combine it into a coherent whole, or sustains a clear argument only for the greater part of the piece; deploys some evidence to support individual points, but sometimes fails to do so, or shows difficulty in weighing evidence, or chooses unreliable evidence; displays an awareness that the past can be interpreted in different ways but without devoting sustained discussion to this; is for the most part correctly presented but has sections where there are serious problems in presentation, style, spelling, grammar, or paragraph construction (but see section on dyslexia below); and uses references and bibliography where needed but occasionally misunderstands their appropriate use or makes mistakes in their presentation. D (45%) Work is marked D if it: shows evidence of an acceptable minimum of reading, based partly on lecture notes and/or a basic textbook; covers some of the necessary ground but fails to discuss some large and vital aspects of a topic; deploys some relevant material but partly fails to combine it into a coherent whole or sustains a clear argument for only some parts of the piece; deploys some evidence to support individual points but often fails to do so or shows difficulty weighing evidence or chooses unreliable, atypical or inappropriate evidence; shows some awareness that the past can be interpreted in different ways but the differences will not receive sustained discussion or analysis; is often correctly presented but has sections where there are serious difficulties in presentation, style, spelling, grammar, or paragraph construction (but see section on dyslexia below); and uses references and bibliography where needed but sometimes misunderstands their appropriate use or makes serious mistakes in their presentation. D- (42%) Work is marked D- if it: shows evidence of an acceptable minimum of reading, based largely on lecture notes and/or a basic textbook; covers parts of the necessary ground but fails to discuss some large and vital aspects of a topic; deploys some potentially relevant material but fails to bring it together into a coherent whole or sustains a clear argument for only parts of the piece; occasionally deploys evidence to back some individual points but often fails to do so or shows difficulty weighing evidence or chooses unreliable, atypical, or inappropriate evidence; may show some awareness that the past can be interpreted in different ways but the differences will not receive sustained discussion or analysis; is in part correctly presented but has sections where there are serious difficulties in presentation, style, spelling, grammar, or paragraph construction (but see section on dyslexia below); and uses references and bibliography where needed but sometimes misunderstands their appropriate use or makes serious mistakes in their presentation.

excellent

A+ (87%) At this level, first-class work will also have its argument supported by an impressive wealth and relevance of detail, but will further deploy the evidence consistently accurately and give indications of deploying unexpected primary and secondary sources. It will habitually demonstrate a particularly acute and critical awareness of the historiography, including conceptual approaches, and give a particularly impressive account of why the conclusions reached are important within a particular historical or archaeological debate. It will show a particularly sophisticated approach to possible objections, moderating the line taken in the light of counter-examples, or producing an interesting synthesis of various contrasting positions. It will be original work. The standards of content, argument, and analysis expected will be consistently first-class work. In essays standards of presentation will be very high. A (80%) At this level, first-class work will have its argument supported by an impressive wealth and relevance of detail. It will usually also demonstrate an 2 of 5 29 Jan 2018 acute awareness of historiography, and give an impressive account of why the conclusions reached are important within a particular historical or 2 of 5 30 Mar 2017 archaeological debate. It may show a particularly subtle approach to possible objections, moderating the line taken 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. In essays and dissertations standards of presentation will be high. A- (74%) A first-class mark at this level is often earned simply by demonstrating one or more of the features of a good upper-second essay to a peculiar degree, for example presenting a particularly strong organization of argument, strong focus, wide range of reading, engagement with the historiography, depth of understanding, an unobjectionable style, and strong presentation.

Learning outcomes

  1. To develop arguments based on solid evidence

  2. To synthesize their understanding of the period as a whole

  3. To develop an understanding of rival approaches to politics in contemporary Europe

  4. To take a specialised interest in particular aspects of the period from a comparative and transnational perspective

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
WRITTEN PLAN Poster

This should be a book review in the form of a poster. The poster should cover 1 page (A2). Please use Powerpoint for this. It should not exceed 800 words. Please avoid jargon: imagine that this poster will be seen by someone who has a university degree, but not in history. Please address a book linked with the module that you find pathbreaking. Try to make clear how this book has challenged notions deeply entrenched not only in academia, but also beyond it, affecting public debates on memory in general in the contexts we have studied. Rather than describing the book, try to focus on how you critically reflect on it.

25
AURAL Oral presentation

Your presentation should be accompanied by a 1-page handout, which should include the structure and the main points of the presentation. The presentation should last for around 10 minutes and will be followed by discussion. Please bear in mind that oral presentations are supposed to be addressed to fellow students. They should benefit from them. Try to explain the subject matter with great clarity. Important points to keep in mind for your presentation are the following: a) key events and b) historical research on the topic you have chosen.

25
ESSAY Essay

Students will be expected to highlight the extent to which they have understood the learning outcomes through writing clear cogent essays which will show their knowledge of important issues and historiographical debates around politics in post-1945 Europe. Answers will be graded by considering the scope of reading; content; focus and clarity of argument; analysis; presentation; and the ability to use references and bibliography appropriately. Answers will be expected to show detailed knowledge of the topic they deal with; to analyse evidence and interpretations in depth; and to engage with current historiographical controversies.

50

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Hours
Lecture

15 lectures will be held, and each will be an hour long. Attendance at all the lectures is essential as they form the backbone of this course. The lectures will provide you with knowledge and understanding of the key themes and issues related to the module. They will also provide an overview of the historiography. As no lecture can be expected to cover every detail of a topic, their ultimate purpose is to act as a starting point for furthering your own private study

15
Seminar

10 seminars will be held on this module, and each will be 1 hour long. They will involve you being in a small group of c. 10-12 students led by a staff member or a PhD researcher. A seminar is an opportunity to focus in-depth on specific topics, sources and assessments, and also to engage in debate with your peers

10
Private study

Independent learning through private study is a core component of this module.

173
Tutorial

2 tutorials will be offered. You will be able to discuss with the course leader any questions of yours on your essay plan/essay and your poster prior to submitting these.

2

Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
  • Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
  • Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting
  • Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others
  • Leadership - Able to lead and manage, develop action plans and objectives, offer guidance and direction to others, and cope with the related pressures such authority can result in

Subject specific skills

  • problem solving to develop solutions to understand the past
  • understanding the complexity of change over time; in specific contexts and chronologies
  • being sensitive to the differences, or the "otherness" of the past, and the difficulty to using it as a guide to present or future action
  • producing logical and structured arguments supported by relevant evidence
  • planning, designing, executing and documenting a programme of research, working independently
  • marshalling and critically appraising other people's arguments, including listening and questioning
  • demonstrating a positive and can-do approach to practical problems
  • demonstrating an innovative approach, creativity, collaboration and risk taking
  • presenting effective oral presentations for different kinds of audiences, including academic and/or audiences with little knowledge of history
  • preparing effective written communications for different readerships
  • making effective and appropriate forms of visual presentation
  • making effective and appropriate use of relevant information technology
  • making critical and effective use of information retrieval skills using paper-based and electronic resources
  • collaborating effectively in a team via experience of working in a group
  • appreciating and being sensitive to different cultures and dealing with unfamiliar situations
  • critical evaluation of one's own and others' opinions
  • engaging with relevant aspects of current agendas such as global perspectives, public engagement, employability, enterprise, and creativity

Resources

Reading list

1) Tony Judt, Postwar: A History of Europe since 1945 2) Samuel P. Huntington, The Third Wave: Democratization in the Late Twentieth Century 3) Martin Conway, "Democracy in Postwar Western Europe: The Triumph of a Political Model", European History Quarterly 32.1, 2002, pp. 59-84. 4) Mary Fulbrook, "The Limits of Totalitarianism: God, State and Society in the GDR", Transactions of the Royal Historical Society, 7 (1997), pp. 25-52. 5) Gerd-Rainer Horn, The spirit of ’68: Rebellion in Western Europe and North America, 1956-1976. 6) Herman Lebovics, Mona Lisa's Escort. Andre Malraux and the Reinvention of French Culture. 7) Uta Poiger, Jazz, Rock, and Rebels Cold War Politics and American Culture in a Divided Germany. 8) Anna Saunders, Honecker's Children: Youth and Patriotism in Eastern Germany. 9) Juliane Fuerst, Stalin's Last Generation. Soviet Post-War Youth and the Emergence of Mature Socialism. 10) Eric Hobsbawm, The Age of Extremes: The Short Twentieth Century, 1914–1991.

Courses including this module

Optional in courses: