Post-War Europe: Political and Societal Transformations
Full course description
This course oﬀers students a comprehensive assessment of contemporary Europe, East and West, since the end of the Second World War. The lectures and tutorials provide an overview of the major events in post-war Europe through a focused and problem-oriented discussion of key themes, such as reconstruction, decolonization, the Cold War, key problems in European integration, as well as the role of political extremism and populism. In doing so, it introduces students to advanced scholarly debates amongst scholars of post-war Europe. The course explores in particular the enduring significance and impact of historical processes in terms of the configuration of geopolitical power relations, socio-economic development, democratic potential, and broader shape of political culture. In the skills training, students are trained in the art of source criticism and will analyse the use and abuse of history in contemporary Europe. The skills training also challenges students to engage critically with intercultural communication, and helps them develop their academic research and writing skills.
Students who complete this course will be able to:
1. Demonstrate advanced knowledge of the political, societal, and international context of the process of European integration since 1945; and the ability to apply such knowledge and understanding to academic questions;
2. Assess major developments in European political and international history since 1945;
3. Review and deploy academic concepts from the field of history and memory studies aimed at understanding the process of European integration and its relation to other major trends in post-war European history;
4. Evaluate, compare, and develop scholarly arguments in European Studies;
5. Identify, retrieve, and critically appraise primary and secondary sources to build evidence-based arguments; and use ethical rules related to scholarly work, including acknowledging other people’s work, using sources properly and applying referencing rules;
6. Participate in scholarly and policy debates on European history and integration within the international PBL classroom and with an awareness of the requirements of intercultural communication.
Judt, T. (2005). Postwar. A History of Europe Since 1945. London: Penguin.
Patel, K. (2020). Project Europe: A History. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press