SHE Level 1
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code M1V324155
Module Leader n/a
School Glasgow School for Business and Society
Subject History
  • A (September start)-B (January start)

Summary of Content

This course provides an introductory survey of the evolution of modern Europe. The focus is on political developments, though these will be placed in their full social and economic context. The chronological framework covers a period of exceptional conflict and dislocation in which the forces of nationalism, liberalism and socialism transformed the continent. Students are encouraged to draw parallels and contrasts between differing national experiences of war, occupation, revolution and dictatorship. Specific themes include: nation-building - the German case; the challenge of socialism and imperialism; the Great War and the post-war settlement; revolutionary Russia from Lenin to Stalin; the rise of fascism - Mussolini and Hitler; the Second World War. Summary of how PRME-related issues / topics are covered in this module: The idea of developing 'a principle-based global engagement platform' is not a new one. The syllabus considers various historical examples of such aspirations, including the Habsburg Empire, which while not exactly global, certainly had a lot of engagement (apart from the Serbs). Indeed, it could be said that 'the creation of sustainable social, environmental and economic value' was 'practically in the DNA' of Emperor Franz Josef and his stakeholders. At least, it would be nice to think so.


Introduction: Europe in Darkness and Light; The Struggle for Mastery: Franco-Prussian War; Bismarck's Germany; At Home with the Hapsburgs; French Imperialism; Romanovs at Bay; The Wars before the War; World War 1; Revolution in Russia; Peacemaking at Versailles; Post-war Chaos: Germany and Central Europe and the Case of Irish independence; Fascism and Italy; USSR, Stalinism and Economic Development; Weimar Republic and the Rise of Hitler; Appeasement, World War 2; Third Reich and Occupied Europe; Aftermath: End Empire

Learning Outcomes

In terms of subject-specific knowledge, students should gain an understanding of the forces shaping Europe during a crucial period of transformation from the peak of imperial power to the physical devastation of the Second World War. The analytical framework is provided by the comparative impact of war and revolution, the rise and decline of political parties and international movements. By the end of the module students should have the ability to identify key themes and issues in European political history in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries;More general teaching outcomes include:" offering students an introduction to the complex nature of historical controversy and historical practice; " emphasising the importance of accurate historical information as a basis for understanding and explaining change through time;" promoting a critical awareness of the past as 'a foreign country';" encouraging sensitivity towards the varieties of historical experience across a variety of cultures and nations.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

-360 The module features fortnightly seminars to provide assistance in the development of subject-specific and general skills. A weekly lecture provides a chronological and thematic overview to allow for general orientation. Students will also be assigned a programme of 'directed reading', supported by a range of illustrative and source materials in the seminar context. Fortnightly seminars are considered to be particularly important in providing opportunities for discussion and questioning. The use of web resources is also encouraged from the outset.

Indicative Reading

-567 Books and articles: C. Emmerson, 1913: In Search of the World Before the Great War, London, 2014 James Joll, Europe Since 1870 , Harmondsworth, 1990 J. Jackson, Europe 1900-45 , Oxford 2002. P. Hayes, Themes in Modern European History, 1890-1945 , London, 1992 M. Boemeke, The Treaty of Versailles , London, 1998 T. Hennessy, Dividing Ireland. World War One and Partition , London, 1998 M. Macmillan, Peacemakers: Six Months that Changed the World, London 2003 M. Howard, The First World War , Oxford, 2002 M. Mazower, Dark Continent: Europe's Twentieth Century , Harmonsworth, 1998 *J. Merriman, A History of Modern Europe Vol. 2: From the French Revolution to the Present (3rd edn. WW Norton, 2009). D. Stevenson, With our Backs to the Wall: Victory and Defeat in 1918, London, 2012 M. Blinkhorn, Mussolini and Fascist Italy , London, 1993 R. Henig, The Weimar Republic , London, 1998 J. W. Hidden, Republican and Fascist Germany , London, 1996. *Main textbook -567 Online sources: <> (Internet Modern History Sourcebook: World War I) <> (Irish History: General Materials) <> (Documents Related to World War II)

Transferrable Skills

By the end of this module students will have gained competence in the following key areas: * note taking: * library and information retrieval skills; * oral and written presentation; * time management; * essay writing.

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Tutorials (FT) 4.00
Assessment (FT) 20.00
Lectures (FT) 23.00
Independent Learning (FT) 141.00
Seminars (FT) 12.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework 1 n/a 40.00 35% Source-based presentation and write up (1000 words)
Exam (Exams Office) 2.00 60.00 35% 2hr unseen exam