Europe and the Revolutions, 1789-1914

Module summary

Module code: HIST1062
Level: 4
Credits: 30
School: Liberal Arts and Sciences
Department: Humanities and Social Sciences
Module Coordinator(s): Michael Talbot


This is a level 4 30 credit History course for both single-honours and joint-honours History students. The course introduces students to the political, cultural and social history of Europe in the period 1789–1914 and challenges students to think critically about the nineteenth-century development and dynamics of mass political movements and other forms of popular protest. Key themes and concepts include nationalism, liberalism, socialism and communism. The course traces the emergence of these revolutionary ideas across the ‘long nineteenth century’ exploring the creation of nation-states and the nationalist and imperial rivalries which culminated in the First World
War. The course also introduces the social, cultural and intellectual developments of the period.

The course aims to:
• Develop an awareness and understanding of political, social and cultural history of European societies between 1789-1914;
• Equip students to work with interpretive concepts including nationalism, liberalism, socialism and communism.
• Introduce students to a range of historical methods and historiography and encourage critical thought and reflection.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this course a student will be able to:

Learning Outcome
1 Analyse with confidence the major trends and key events in European history from the French Revolution to the outbreak of the
First World War.
2 Identify and critique the major trends and debates within the historiography
3 Understand the relationship between intellectual, political and social trends.
4 Apply appropriate academic conventions with regard to referencing.
5 Work with self-discipline and self-direction; to work with others, and have respect for others' reasoned views.
6 Gather, organise and deploy evidence, data and information; show structure, coherence, clarity and fluency of oral and
written expression.

Indicative content

The course will cover significant aspects of the social, political and cultural history of nineteenth century Europe by exploring major
events of the period including the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars, the 1848 Revolutions, German and Italian unification, the
decline of the Hapsburg empire and the growth of pan-European imperial rivalries. In addition to gaining a detailed understanding and
knowledge of these events, students will study how European societies were transformed through industrialisation and related changes in demography, migration and empire. Students will be introduced to and equipped to interrogate various contemporary and
historiographical debates, focussing on key concepts including nationalism, liberalism, socialism and communism.

Teaching and learning activity

Students will be exposed to a range of approaches and skills sets.

The course will be taught through lectures, seminars, and field trips. Extensive use will be made of Moodle both as a repository for
teaching and learning resources and as a means of facilitating group work and additional discussion. Classroom activities will take the
form of discussions, source-based analysis and writing exercises.

Students will be expected to engage in directed reading, to undertake independent research, and to interpret primary and secondary
source materials in addition to demonstrating their ability to offer sound, well-informed, original arguments in a written format.


Blog post 10%
Pass Mark 40%
Outcome 1,5,6
A blog post introducing a subject/sources on a topic given by the course tutor.

Annotated Bibliography 20%
Outcome 2,3,5,6
Weighting % - 20%
Pass Mark - 40%
An annotated bibliography on a topic given by the course tutor.

Essay 40%
Pass Mark - 40%
Outcome 1,2,3,4,5,6
2000 Words
An original wssay of c 2000 words on a topic given by the course tutor

Examination 30%
Outcome 1,2,3,6
Unseen two hour exam
Pass Mark - 40%