MA in History
2455
MA in History
MA in History
No
128000030526099
Show
History
- select a department -
- select a department -
Prof Jan Plamper
j.plamper@gold.ac.uk
No

MA in History

The MA in History is innovative, creative, free-thinking, stimulating, diverse and challenging – everything that is distinctive about history at Goldsmiths.

About the department
History

Length
1 year full-time or 2 years part-time.
Funding
If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an application deadline. Find out more about funding opportunities for home/EU applicants, or funding for international applicants.

The Department sometimes offers fee waiver bursaries for this programme.

Fees
See our tuition fees.
Contact the department
Contact Prof Jan Plamper
Visit us
Find out about how you can visit Goldsmiths at one of our open days or come on a campus tour.

The Department of History’s approach is thematic and interdisciplinary, with staff expertise spanning the histories of Britain, East and West Europe, South Asia and Africa.

We are on the cutting-edge of our fields and the student-teacher ratio allows us to devote an unmatched amount of time to individual supervision.

Our focus is primary research and we encourage students to follow their own historical interests.

The MA in History aims to develop your research skills, and your understanding of key debates and methods in historiography.

In addition, it allows you to develop their specific subject interests through a range of option modules and the dissertation.

Consequently, in addition to the compulsory core module (Explorations and Debates) and the Research Skills modules, you choose two options, one of which, if you wish, can be from another department at Goldsmiths or from the wide-ranging intercollegiate list (a list of MA modules available at other colleges of the University of London).

You'll end the programme by writing a 10,000-word dissertation on a topic of your own choice, based on primary research.

The process of writing the dissertation includes participating in organising, and presenting at, the department's dissertation conference.

What you study

  • Two compulsory modules, Explorations & Debates in History and Research Skills. Explorations and Debates investigates the ways historians have conceptualised and contested historical practice in the modern and early modern periods. Research Skills, develops expertise in a variety of methodologies including the use of oral, visual and material, as well as textual, sources.
  • Two thematic options, either both chosen from those offered by the Department, or one of the Departmental options and the other from another Goldsmiths’ Department, or one of the Departmental options and  the other from the list of 30+ options available each year in the History Departments of other colleges which participate in the University of London MA Intercollegiate Sharing Scheme.
  • Two History option modules that could include:
    -Ethnic Conflict and Reconciliation in Modern Europe
    -Italian Terrorism in the 20th Century
    -Islam and Christianity in Modern Africa
    -The History of Emotions
    -Visual Culture and Empire in Early Modern Venice
    -Religious and Political Controversies in Early Modern Europe
    -A Troubled Culture: Northern Ireland Since 1921
    -Life in the Trenches: Perspectives on British Military History, 1914-18
    -Medicine on the Silk Roads: Traditions and Transmissions
    -A History of Violence
  • A one-day, student-led, interdisciplinary research workshop to share ideas about projects and methodologies, and gain experience in event organisation.

Applying - MA in History

Applying and entrance requirements

You can apply directly to Goldsmiths via the website by clicking the ‘apply now’ button on the main programme page.

Before submitting your application you’ll need to have: 

  • Details of your education history, including the dates of all exams/assessments.
  • The email address details of your referee who we can request a reference from, or alternatively an electronic copy of your academic reference.
  • A personal statement. This can either be uploaded as a Word Document or PDF, or completed online.
  • If available, an electronic copy of your educational transcript (this is particularly important if you have studied outside of the UK, but isn’t mandatory).

You'll be able to save your progress at any point and return to your application by logging in using your username/email and password.

When to apply

We accept applications from October for students wanting to start the following September. 

We encourage you to complete your application as early as possible, even if you haven't finished your current programme of study. It's very common to be offered a place that is conditional on you achieving a particular qualification. 

If you're applying for funding you may be subject to an application deadline. Find out more about funding opportunities for UK/EU students and international students. 

Late applications will only be considered if there are spaces available.

Selection process

Admission to many programmes is by interview, unless you live outside the UK. Occasionally, we'll make candidates an offer of a place on the basis of their application and qualifications alone.

Entrance requirements

You should have (or expect to be awarded) an undergraduate degree of at least second class standard in a humanities or social science subject.

You might also be considered for some programmes if you aren’t a graduate or your degree is in an unrelated field, but have relevant experience and can show that you have the ability to work at postgraduate level.

We also accept a wide range of international equivalent qualifications, which can be found on our country-specific pages. If you'd like more information, please contact the Admissions Office.

English language

If your first language isn't English, you need to demonstrate the required level of English language competence to enroll and study on our programmes. 

Please check our English language requirements for more information.

Find out more about applying 

Contact us 

Get in touch via our online form

UK/EU

+44 (0)20 7919 7766
course-info@gold.ac.uk

International (non-EU)

+44 (0)20 7919 7702
international@gold.ac.uk

Staff
History staff

Our staff

Academic staff  (Teaching & Research)

Abse, Dr Toby
Modern Italian Labour History and Politics.

Djokic, Dr Dejan
Modern History of the Balkans.

Grayson, Professor Richard
Twentieth Century British and Irish History, with particular Interests in the First World War.

Hessayon, Dr Ariel
Early Modern Religion, Ideas, Politics, and Popular Culture.

Lambert, Ms Sarah
Medieval History, Gender Power Politics, Crusades.
and Ethnicity.

Lee, Dr Rebekah
Social and Cultural History of Contemporary Southern Africa.

Plamper, Prof Jan
Modern European and Russian History, Symbolic Politics and Visual History, History of Emotions.

Richmond, Dr Vivienne - Head of Department
19th Century British Dress, Death, Poverty, Gender, Philanthropy.

Stouraiti, Dr Anastasia
Cultural History of the Early Modern Mediterranean, Venice and its Empire, Early Modern Visual Culture.

Yoeli-Tlalim, Dr Ronit
Various Aspects of the History of Asian Medicine, Interactions between Medicine and Religion.

Wald, Dr Erica
Imperial, Social and Medical History.

Watson, Dr Alexander
Social, Cultural and Military History of Central Europe and Britain during the First World War.

 

Academic staff  (Teaching only)

Cartolano, Dr Antonio
Renaissance Italian History, Politics and Art.

Cecolin, Dr Alessandra
Islamic and Judaic shared History in Middle East, History of Political Zionism, History of National and Religious Identities living in the Middle East.

Deedman, Dr Cheryl
Nineteenth Century Literature, Popular Literature and Gender.

Jeater, Prof Diana
African History, specialising in gender, law and religion in southern Africa, with a particular focus on Zimbabwe

Kennedy, Dr Rosie
20th Century British Social and Cultural History, the First World War, History of Childhood, Children and War, Education.

King, Ms Vanessa
Medieval History: Minority Groups, Travel and Gender.

Mansfield, Dr Andrew
Early modern history, the history of political thought, intellectual history, Britain and France in the seventeenth and eighteenth-centuries.

Price, Dr John
Modern British Social and Cultural History, Constructions of Heroism, and the History of Popular Protest.

Emeritus Professors

Alexander, Professor Sally
Modern British History, London History, the History of Psychoanalysis.

Keown, Professor Damien
The History and Philosophy of Buddhism in India, Buddhist Ethics.

Killingray, Professor David
19th - 20th Century Africa & Caribbean, the Black Diaspora, English Local History, Modern Church and Mission History.

Administrative staff

Martin, Ms Nevenka
Department Business Manager

House, Ms Rachel
Undergraduate Coordinator

Feurle, Ms Kerstin
Postgraduate Coordinator (currently on Maternity leave)

Other historians linked with the Department

Mazower, Professor Mark
Mark Mazower has been awarded honorary Doctor of Literature (DLit) by Goldsmiths College, University of London, and is affiliated with the Goldsmiths Centre for the Study of the Balkans.

Academic staff  (Teaching only)

Cartolano, Dr Antonio
Renaissance Italian History, Politics and Art.

Cecolin, Dr Alessandra
Islamic and Judaic shared History in Middle East, History of Political Zionism, History of National and Religious Identities living in the Middle East.

Deedman, Dr Cheryl
Nineteenth Century Literature, Popular Literature and Gender.

Jeater, Prof Diana
African History, specialising in gender, law and religion in southern Africa, with a particular focus on Zimbabwe

Kennedy, Dr Rosie
20th Century British Social and Cultural History, the First World War, History of Childhood, Children and War, Education.

King, Ms Vanessa
Medieval History: Minority Groups, Travel and Gender.

Mansfield, Dr Andrew
Early modern history, the history of political thought, intellectual history, Britain and France in the seventeenth and eighteenth-centuries.

Price, Dr John
Modern British Social and Cultural History, Constructions of Heroism, and the History of Popular Protest.

Emeritus Professors

Alexander, Professor Sally
Modern British History, London History, the History of Psychoanalysis.

Keown, Professor Damien
The History and Philosophy of Buddhism in India, Buddhist Ethics.

Killingray, Professor David
19th - 20th Century Africa & Caribbean, the Black Diaspora, English Local History, Modern Church and Mission History.

Administrative staff

Martin, Ms Nevenka
Department Business Manager

House, Ms Rachel
Undergraduate Coordinator

Feurle, Ms Kerstin
Postgraduate Coordinator (currently on Maternity leave)

Other historians linked with the Department

Mazower, Professor Mark
Mark Mazower has been awarded honorary Doctor of Literature (DLit) by Goldsmiths College, University of London, and is affiliated with the Goldsmiths Centre for the Study of the Balkans.


Course header

Optional Modules 2015-16


Autumn term modules

Autumn term modules
Italian Terrorism in the 20th Century

Module Convenor: Dr Toby Abse

Duration: Autumn Term, Wednesday (10am-12noon)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words 

 

This module will look at indigenous Italian terrorism of both the extreme left and extreme right, focusing on the period between 1968 and the early 1980s, in the context of broader social and political developments in the history of Italy. Some reference will also be made to the Italian anarchist terrorism of the late 19th and early 20th centuries as an historical precedent and to the Italian Resistance of 1943-45, whose activities groups like the Red Brigades frequently evoked in their attempts to justify their own violent actions. Some attention will also be paid to the social and political movements of the late 1960s and early 1970s. During this period a small minority of those involved in such movements gravitated towards leftwing terrorism, whilst rightwing terrorism was in many ways a reaction against such movements, even if it had its own ideological roots in the Fascist Regime. Some brief comparison between the Red Brigades and the German leftwing terrorism of the Red Army Faction (Baader-Meinhof Gang) will be made, primarily to demonstrate that Italian terrorism had a wider social base than its German counterpart. The module will examine the work of historians, political scientists and sociologists, as well as autobiographical material from former terrorists, Italian films (subtitled) and television documentaries.

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Catanzaro, Raimondo, ed., The Red Brigades and Left wing Terrorism in Italy (London, 1991)

  • Drake, Richard, The Revolutionary Mystique and Terrorism in Contemporary Italy (Indiana, 1989)

  • Meade, Robert C., Red Brigades: The Story of Italian Terrorism (London, 1990)

  • Moss, David, The Politics of Left-wing Violence in Italy, 1969-85 (Basingstoke, 1989) 

 

Code Module title Credits
HT71125C
Italian Terrorism in the 20th Century
30 CATS

Module Convenor: Dr Toby Abse

Duration: Autumn Term, Wednesday (10am-12noon)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words 

 

This module will look at indigenous Italian terrorism of both the extreme left and extreme right, focusing on the period between 1968 and the early 1980s, in the context of broader social and political developments in the history of Italy. Some reference will also be made to the Italian anarchist terrorism of the late 19th and early 20th centuries as an historical precedent and to the Italian Resistance of 1943-45, whose activities groups like the Red Brigades frequently evoked in their attempts to justify their own violent actions. Some attention will also be paid to the social and political movements of the late 1960s and early 1970s. During this period a small minority of those involved in such movements gravitated towards leftwing terrorism, whilst rightwing terrorism was in many ways a reaction against such movements, even if it had its own ideological roots in the Fascist Regime. Some brief comparison between the Red Brigades and the German leftwing terrorism of the Red Army Faction (Baader-Meinhof Gang) will be made, primarily to demonstrate that Italian terrorism had a wider social base than its German counterpart. The module will examine the work of historians, political scientists and sociologists, as well as autobiographical material from former terrorists, Italian films (subtitled) and television documentaries.

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Catanzaro, Raimondo, ed., The Red Brigades and Left wing Terrorism in Italy (London, 1991)

  • Drake, Richard, The Revolutionary Mystique and Terrorism in Contemporary Italy (Indiana, 1989)

  • Meade, Robert C., Red Brigades: The Story of Italian Terrorism (London, 1990)

  • Moss, David, The Politics of Left-wing Violence in Italy, 1969-85 (Basingstoke, 1989) 

 

The History of Emotions
The History of Emotions
Course Convenor: Prof Jan Plamper
Duration: Autumn Term, Wednesday (10am-12noon)
Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words 
 
 
The history of emotions is a burgeoning field within the historical discipline—so much so, that some are invoking an ‘emotional turn’ or ‘affective turn’. The University of London’s own Centre for the History of Emotions at Queen Mary is one of the many signs of the institutionalisation of the field. This course takes stock of what has been done so far and sketches where the history of emotions might head in the future. We will grapple with some of the complex questions that have defined the field—are emotions socially constructed or reducible to a universal biological substrate? Is there a set of ‘basic’ human emotions, such as anger, disgust, fear, happiness, sadness, and surprise? What sources are available for the study of emotions in the past? How can historians factor in emotion as a cause motivating human action? In coming to terms with these questions, we will look to the existing history of emotions, including that of the French Annales school, Norbert Elias, Peter Stearns, William Reddy, and Barbara Rosenwein. And we will venture outside history proper and probe how other disciplines—especially cultural anthropology and life science, including the latest affective neuroscience—have dealt with these (and other) questions. We will also examine the links between the history of emotions field and the fields of gender history, transnational/postcolonial history, the history of science, media and visual studies, economic history, legal history, and more.

Seminar attendance is compulsory and students will be expected to read and prepare the material listed in the programme in advance of classes. Each student will be called upon to give a presentation to the class at least once during the term. 

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Dalgleish, Tim, Barnaby D. Dunn and Dean Mobbs, ‘Affective Neuroscience: Past, Present, and Future’, Emotion Review 1 (2009), 355-368

  • Dixon, Thomas, From Passions to Emotions: The Creation of a Secular Psychological Category (CUP, 2003)

  • Dror, Otniel, The Affect of Experiment: The Turn to Emotions in Anglo-American Physiology, 1900-1940, Isis 90 (1999), 205-237

  • Frevert, Ute, Emotions in HistoryLost and Found, Central European (UP, 2011)

  • Lutz, Catherine and Geoffrey M. White, ‘The Anthropology of Emotions’, Annual

    Review of Anthropology 15 (1986), 405-436

  • Lyon, Margot L., ‘Missing Emotion: The Limitations of Cultural Constructionism in the

    Study of Emotion’, Cultural Anthropology 10 (1995), 244-263

  • Plamper, Jan, ‘The History of Emotions: An Interview with William Reddy, Barbara

    Rosenwein, and Peter Stearns’, History and Theory 49 (2010) 237-265

  • Reddy, William, The Navigation of Feeling: A Framework for the History of Emotions

    (CUP, 2001)

  • Rosenwein, Barbara, ‘Worrying about Emotions in History’, The American Historical

    Review 107 (2002) 821-845

  • Rosenwein, Barbara, Emotional Communities in the Early Middle Ages (Cornell UP,

    2006) 

 

HT71131C
The History of Emotions
30 CATS

Course Convenor: Prof Jan Plamper
Duration: Autumn Term, Wednesday (10am-12noon)
Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words 
 
 
The history of emotions is a burgeoning field within the historical discipline—so much so, that some are invoking an ‘emotional turn’ or ‘affective turn’. The University of London’s own Centre for the History of Emotions at Queen Mary is one of the many signs of the institutionalisation of the field. This course takes stock of what has been done so far and sketches where the history of emotions might head in the future. We will grapple with some of the complex questions that have defined the field—are emotions socially constructed or reducible to a universal biological substrate? Is there a set of ‘basic’ human emotions, such as anger, disgust, fear, happiness, sadness, and surprise? What sources are available for the study of emotions in the past? How can historians factor in emotion as a cause motivating human action? In coming to terms with these questions, we will look to the existing history of emotions, including that of the French Annales school, Norbert Elias, Peter Stearns, William Reddy, and Barbara Rosenwein. And we will venture outside history proper and probe how other disciplines—especially cultural anthropology and life science, including the latest affective neuroscience—have dealt with these (and other) questions. We will also examine the links between the history of emotions field and the fields of gender history, transnational/postcolonial history, the history of science, media and visual studies, economic history, legal history, and more.

Seminar attendance is compulsory and students will be expected to read and prepare the material listed in the programme in advance of classes. Each student will be called upon to give a presentation to the class at least once during the term. 

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Dalgleish, Tim, Barnaby D. Dunn and Dean Mobbs, ‘Affective Neuroscience: Past, Present, and Future’, Emotion Review 1 (2009), 355-368

  • Dixon, Thomas, From Passions to Emotions: The Creation of a Secular Psychological Category (CUP, 2003)

  • Dror, Otniel, The Affect of Experiment: The Turn to Emotions in Anglo-American Physiology, 1900-1940, Isis 90 (1999), 205-237

  • Frevert, Ute, Emotions in HistoryLost and Found, Central European (UP, 2011)

  • Lutz, Catherine and Geoffrey M. White, ‘The Anthropology of Emotions’, Annual

    Review of Anthropology 15 (1986), 405-436

  • Lyon, Margot L., ‘Missing Emotion: The Limitations of Cultural Constructionism in the

    Study of Emotion’, Cultural Anthropology 10 (1995), 244-263

  • Plamper, Jan, ‘The History of Emotions: An Interview with William Reddy, Barbara

    Rosenwein, and Peter Stearns’, History and Theory 49 (2010) 237-265

  • Reddy, William, The Navigation of Feeling: A Framework for the History of Emotions

    (CUP, 2001)

  • Rosenwein, Barbara, ‘Worrying about Emotions in History’, The American Historical

    Review 107 (2002) 821-845

  • Rosenwein, Barbara, Emotional Communities in the Early Middle Ages (Cornell UP,

    2006) 

 

Medicine on the Silk Roads: Traditions and Transmissions (HT71134A)
Medicine on the Silk Roads: Traditions and Transmissions

Note – the seminars for this module are taught with Third Years taking a two-term version as their Special Subject. The vast majority of students taking the module will be Third Years rather than MA students.

Module Convenor: Dr Ronit Yoeli-Tlalim

Duration: Autumn Term, Monday (2-4pm)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words CAT Value: 30 CATS

 

 

While history of medicine is usually taught focusing primarily on either ‘western’ or ‘eastern’ traditions, this module will focus on transmissions of knowledge along the Silk Roads. More than just routes on which missionaries, travellers and merchants moved between east and west Asia, the Silk Roads has become a metaphor of east-west connections. This module will

deal with Asian medical traditions as they are represented in manuscripts found in sites along the Silk-Roads, primarily the Dunhuang caves and Turfan. The discussion of these medical traditions will be contextualised within the multi-cultural aspects of the Silk-Roads and within processes of transmission of knowledge along the Silk Roads. The module will also deal with the historical background leading to the discovery of the Silk Road sites and with how the internet is transforming research of the Silk Road. The primary sources used in this course will mostly consist of manuscripts found in Dunhuang (in translation from Chinese, Tibetan, Khotanese and Uighur) as well as visual material and artefacts from the Silk Roads. The texts and artefacts mostly date from the later centuries of the first millennium.

 

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Hansen, Valerie, The Silk Road: A New History (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012)

  • Hopkirk, Peter, Foreign Devils on the Silk Road: The Search for the Lost Treasures of Central Asia (London: John Murray, 1980)

  • Jackson, Mark, ed., The Oxford Handbook of the History of Medicine (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013)

  • Lo, Vivienne and Cullen, Christopher, eds., Medieval Chinese Medicine: The Dunhuang Medical Manuscripts (London: RoutledgeCurzon, 2005)

  • Millward, James A, The Silk Road: A Very Short Introduction, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013

  • Yoeli-Tlalim, Ronit, “Re-visiting ‘Galen in Tibet’”, Medical History, 56:3, July 2012, pp. 355-365 

HT71134A
Medicine on the Silk Roads: Traditions and Transmissions
30 CATS

Note – the seminars for this module are taught with Third Years taking a two-term version as their Special Subject. The vast majority of students taking the module will be Third Years rather than MA students.

Module Convenor: Dr Ronit Yoeli-Tlalim

Duration: Autumn Term, Monday (2-4pm)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words CAT Value: 30 CATS

 

 

While history of medicine is usually taught focusing primarily on either ‘western’ or ‘eastern’ traditions, this module will focus on transmissions of knowledge along the Silk Roads. More than just routes on which missionaries, travellers and merchants moved between east and west Asia, the Silk Roads has become a metaphor of east-west connections. This module will

deal with Asian medical traditions as they are represented in manuscripts found in sites along the Silk-Roads, primarily the Dunhuang caves and Turfan. The discussion of these medical traditions will be contextualised within the multi-cultural aspects of the Silk-Roads and within processes of transmission of knowledge along the Silk Roads. The module will also deal with the historical background leading to the discovery of the Silk Road sites and with how the internet is transforming research of the Silk Road. The primary sources used in this course will mostly consist of manuscripts found in Dunhuang (in translation from Chinese, Tibetan, Khotanese and Uighur) as well as visual material and artefacts from the Silk Roads. The texts and artefacts mostly date from the later centuries of the first millennium.

 

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Hansen, Valerie, The Silk Road: A New History (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012)

  • Hopkirk, Peter, Foreign Devils on the Silk Road: The Search for the Lost Treasures of Central Asia (London: John Murray, 1980)

  • Jackson, Mark, ed., The Oxford Handbook of the History of Medicine (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013)

  • Lo, Vivienne and Cullen, Christopher, eds., Medieval Chinese Medicine: The Dunhuang Medical Manuscripts (London: RoutledgeCurzon, 2005)

  • Millward, James A, The Silk Road: A Very Short Introduction, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013

  • Yoeli-Tlalim, Ronit, “Re-visiting ‘Galen in Tibet’”, Medical History, 56:3, July 2012, pp. 355-365 

Life in the Trenches: Perspectives on British Military History, 1914- 18 (HT7113
Life in the Trenches: Perspectives on British Military History, 1914-18

Note – the seminars for this module are taught with Third Years taking a two-term version as their Special Subject. The vast majority of students taking the module will be Third Years rather than MA students.

Module Convenor: Prof Richard Grayson

Duration: Autumn Term, Monday (2-4pm)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words

 

Memories of the First World War remain strong, nearly a century after the war’s start, through the influence of popular culture, images of slaughter, mud and poor leadership dominate a public view which thinks of the lucky few who came back, even though fatality rates were around 12% of those who served. This module is focused on the day-to-day experiences of soldiers in the British army, using battalion war diaries as the core sources.

These diaries record the detailed movements of battalions once they had finished training. They provide both much detail and often, vivid descriptions, with the main focus being on four Irish battalions (2nd and 9th Royal Irish Rifles, 6th Connaughts and 7th Leinsters) which are central to the module convenor’s book Belfast Boys. These diaries will be used as one way of judging the accuracy of popular memory of 1914-18, which is so deeply rooted in popular culture.

In so doing, the module will also use poetry, film and individual diaries. A visit to the National Archive at Kew will be arranged to support primary research.

 

Introductory Reading:
 
  • Corrigan, Gordon, Mud, Blood and Poppycock (London: Cassell, 2003)
  • Fussell, Paul, The Great War and Modern Memory (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1975)

  • Gardner, Brian, ed., Up the Line to Death: The War Poets, 1914-1918 (London: Methuen, 1964)

  • Grayson, Richard S., Belfast Boys: How Unionists and Nationalists Fought and Died Together in the First World War (London: Continuum, 2009). Paperback published in 2010

  • Stevenson, David, 1914-1918: The History of the First World War (London: Penguin, 2012 edition)

  • Todman, Dan, The Great War: Myth and Memory (London: Continuum, 2005)

  • van Emden, Richard, ed., Sapper Martin: The Secret Great War Diary of Jack Martin

    (London: Bloomsbury, 2010) 

 

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Corrigan, Gordon, Mud, Blood and Poppycock (London: Cassell, 2003)
  • Fussell, Paul, The Great War and Modern Memory (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1975)

  • Gardner, Brian, ed., Up the Line to Death: The War Poets, 1914-1918 (London: Methuen, 1964)

  • Grayson, Richard S., Belfast Boys: How Unionists and Nationalists Fought and Died Together in the First World War (London: Continuum, 2009). Paperback published in 2010

  • Stevenson, David, 1914-1918: The History of the First World War (London: Penguin, 2012 edition)

  • Todman, Dan, The Great War: Myth and Memory (London: Continuum, 2005)

  • van Emden, Richard, ed., Sapper Martin: The Secret Great War Diary of Jack Martin (London: Bloomsbury, 2010) 

HT71136A
Life in the Trenches: Perspectives on British Military History, 1914-18
30 CATS

Note – the seminars for this module are taught with Third Years taking a two-term version as their Special Subject. The vast majority of students taking the module will be Third Years rather than MA students.

Module Convenor: Prof Richard Grayson

Duration: Autumn Term, Monday (2-4pm)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words

 

Memories of the First World War remain strong, nearly a century after the war’s start, through the influence of popular culture, images of slaughter, mud and poor leadership dominate a public view which thinks of the lucky few who came back, even though fatality rates were around 12% of those who served. This module is focused on the day-to-day experiences of soldiers in the British army, using battalion war diaries as the core sources.

These diaries record the detailed movements of battalions once they had finished training. They provide both much detail and often, vivid descriptions, with the main focus being on four Irish battalions (2nd and 9th Royal Irish Rifles, 6th Connaughts and 7th Leinsters) which are central to the module convenor’s book Belfast Boys. These diaries will be used as one way of judging the accuracy of popular memory of 1914-18, which is so deeply rooted in popular culture.

In so doing, the module will also use poetry, film and individual diaries. A visit to the National Archive at Kew will be arranged to support primary research.

 

Introductory Reading:
 
  • Corrigan, Gordon, Mud, Blood and Poppycock (London: Cassell, 2003)
  • Fussell, Paul, The Great War and Modern Memory (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1975)

  • Gardner, Brian, ed., Up the Line to Death: The War Poets, 1914-1918 (London: Methuen, 1964)

  • Grayson, Richard S., Belfast Boys: How Unionists and Nationalists Fought and Died Together in the First World War (London: Continuum, 2009). Paperback published in 2010

  • Stevenson, David, 1914-1918: The History of the First World War (London: Penguin, 2012 edition)

  • Todman, Dan, The Great War: Myth and Memory (London: Continuum, 2005)

  • van Emden, Richard, ed., Sapper Martin: The Secret Great War Diary of Jack Martin

    (London: Bloomsbury, 2010) 

 

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Corrigan, Gordon, Mud, Blood and Poppycock (London: Cassell, 2003)
  • Fussell, Paul, The Great War and Modern Memory (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1975)

  • Gardner, Brian, ed., Up the Line to Death: The War Poets, 1914-1918 (London: Methuen, 1964)

  • Grayson, Richard S., Belfast Boys: How Unionists and Nationalists Fought and Died Together in the First World War (London: Continuum, 2009). Paperback published in 2010

  • Stevenson, David, 1914-1918: The History of the First World War (London: Penguin, 2012 edition)

  • Todman, Dan, The Great War: Myth and Memory (London: Continuum, 2005)

  • van Emden, Richard, ed., Sapper Martin: The Secret Great War Diary of Jack Martin (London: Bloomsbury, 2010) 


Spring term modules

Spring Term Modules
Religious and Political Controversies in Early Modern Europe

Module Convenor: Dr Ariel Hessayon

Duration: Spring Term, Wednesday (10am-12noon)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words

 

This module examines some of the central debates that pre-occupied early modern politicians, theologians, revolutionaries, scientists and philosophers alike. Subjects to be investigated within this culture of disputation and investigation include: issues of sovereignty and the divine right of Kings; republicanism; natural rights; the nature of virtue; the authority of the Bible; religious doctrines; predestination; the role of the Church and the Pope; the nature of the body and the soul. Students will be introduced to a number of important primary sources ranging from political treatises and religious tracts to philosophical meditations.

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Burns, J.H. and Mark Goldie, eds., The Cambridge History of Political Thought 1450- 1700 (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1991)

  • Pagden, Anthony, The Language of Political Theory (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1987)

  • Skinner, Quentin, The Foundations of Modern Political Thought (2 vols., Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1978)

Williams, George, The Radical Reformation (3rd edn., Ann Arbor, MI: Truman State University Press, 2000)

 

Primary sources:

  • Machiavelli, Niccolò The Prince (1513)
  • More, Thomas, Utopia (1516) 
Code Module title Credits
HT71120C
Religious and Political Controversies in Early Modern Europe
30 CATS

Module Convenor: Dr Ariel Hessayon

Duration: Spring Term, Wednesday (10am-12noon)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words

 

This module examines some of the central debates that pre-occupied early modern politicians, theologians, revolutionaries, scientists and philosophers alike. Subjects to be investigated within this culture of disputation and investigation include: issues of sovereignty and the divine right of Kings; republicanism; natural rights; the nature of virtue; the authority of the Bible; religious doctrines; predestination; the role of the Church and the Pope; the nature of the body and the soul. Students will be introduced to a number of important primary sources ranging from political treatises and religious tracts to philosophical meditations.

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Burns, J.H. and Mark Goldie, eds., The Cambridge History of Political Thought 1450- 1700 (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1991)

  • Pagden, Anthony, The Language of Political Theory (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1987)

  • Skinner, Quentin, The Foundations of Modern Political Thought (2 vols., Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1978)

Williams, George, The Radical Reformation (3rd edn., Ann Arbor, MI: Truman State University Press, 2000)

 

Primary sources:

  • Machiavelli, Niccolò The Prince (1513)
  • More, Thomas, Utopia (1516) 

Visual Culture and Empire in Early Modern Venice (HT71124C)
Visual Culture and Empire in Early Modern Venice

Module Convenor: Dr Anastasia Stouraiti

Duration: Spring Term, Wednesday (12noon-2pm)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words

 

This module investigates the connections between empire building and visual culture in Venice from the Renaissance to the eighteenth century. It examines both the ways in which trade and colonisation influenced Venetian artistic and cultural production and how images, texts and objects made empire visible at home ant motivated new imperial projects abroad. Through an interdisciplinary approach that combines cultural history, visual studies and postcolonial criticism, the module covers the following themes: representations of the Venetian 'State of the sea'; art and print culture in the Venetian-Ottoman wars; imperial ceremonies and rituals; colonial cartography; antiquarian collections; the Byzantine heritage; cross-cultural contacts with the Islamic world; early modern Orientalism. In discussing these themes, the module places metropolitan visual media and communication in the context of Venetian empire formation and treats the production and consumption of images as an integral part of Venice's commercial and political presence in the Mediterranean. There is no foreign language requirement for this module.

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Carboni, Stefano, ed., Venice and Islamic World, 828-1797, exhibition catalogue, New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art (New Haven, Yale University Press, 2007)

  • Georgopoulou, Maria, Venice's Mediterranean Colonies: Architecture and Urbanism (Cambridge, CUP, 2001)

  • Lane, Frederic C., Venice: A Maritime Republic (Baltimore & London, Johns Hopkins UP, 1973)

  • Rosand, David, Myths of Venice. The Figuration of a State (Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina Press, 2001) 

HT71124C
Visual Culture and Empire in Early Modern Venice
30 CATS

Module Convenor: Dr Anastasia Stouraiti

Duration: Spring Term, Wednesday (12noon-2pm)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words

 

This module investigates the connections between empire building and visual culture in Venice from the Renaissance to the eighteenth century. It examines both the ways in which trade and colonisation influenced Venetian artistic and cultural production and how images, texts and objects made empire visible at home ant motivated new imperial projects abroad. Through an interdisciplinary approach that combines cultural history, visual studies and postcolonial criticism, the module covers the following themes: representations of the Venetian 'State of the sea'; art and print culture in the Venetian-Ottoman wars; imperial ceremonies and rituals; colonial cartography; antiquarian collections; the Byzantine heritage; cross-cultural contacts with the Islamic world; early modern Orientalism. In discussing these themes, the module places metropolitan visual media and communication in the context of Venetian empire formation and treats the production and consumption of images as an integral part of Venice's commercial and political presence in the Mediterranean. There is no foreign language requirement for this module.

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Carboni, Stefano, ed., Venice and Islamic World, 828-1797, exhibition catalogue, New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art (New Haven, Yale University Press, 2007)

  • Georgopoulou, Maria, Venice's Mediterranean Colonies: Architecture and Urbanism (Cambridge, CUP, 2001)

  • Lane, Frederic C., Venice: A Maritime Republic (Baltimore & London, Johns Hopkins UP, 1973)

  • Rosand, David, Myths of Venice. The Figuration of a State (Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina Press, 2001) 

A History of Violence (HT71133A)
A History of Violence

Module Convenor: Prof Alexander Watson

Duration: Spring Term, Wednesday (10am-12noon)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words

 

This module explores the history and historiography of violence, focusing especially, but not exclusively, on Europe between the medieval period and the present day. It has two principal themes. First, it examines the recent, important debate on whether and why violence has declined in the past half millennium. Domestic violence and crime, terrorism, war and genocide will all be discussed. The role of religion and secular ideologies, concepts such as honour, and the growth of state power will be among the issues covered. Second, the module investigates the methodologies that scholars have used to explain the causes of violence, the different forms in which it has been practised and its incidence in history. Students will study cultural histories of violence and will explore how disciplines such as anthropology, sociology and more recently behavioural sciences such as psychology and neuroscience have contributed to understanding of human violence in history.

 

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Carroll, Stuart, ed., Cultures of Violence: Interpersonal Violence in Historical Perspective (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007)

  • Ferguson, Niall, War of the World. History’s Age of Hatred (London: Allen Lane, 2006)

  • Kiernan, Ben, Blood and Soil: A World History of Genocide and Extermination from Sparta to Darfur (New Haven, CN: Yale University Press, 2007)

  • Miller, William Ian, Humiliation and Other Essays on Honour, Social Discomfort and Violence (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1995)

  • Pinker, Steven, The Better Angels of Our Nature: The Decline of Violence in History and its Causes (London: Allen Lane, 2011)

  • Spierenburg, Pieter, A History of Murder: Personal Violence in Europe from the Middle Ages to the Present (Cambridge: Polity P., 2008) 

HT71133A
A History of Violence
30 CATS

Module Convenor: Prof Alexander Watson

Duration: Spring Term, Wednesday (10am-12noon)

Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words

 

This module explores the history and historiography of violence, focusing especially, but not exclusively, on Europe between the medieval period and the present day. It has two principal themes. First, it examines the recent, important debate on whether and why violence has declined in the past half millennium. Domestic violence and crime, terrorism, war and genocide will all be discussed. The role of religion and secular ideologies, concepts such as honour, and the growth of state power will be among the issues covered. Second, the module investigates the methodologies that scholars have used to explain the causes of violence, the different forms in which it has been practised and its incidence in history. Students will study cultural histories of violence and will explore how disciplines such as anthropology, sociology and more recently behavioural sciences such as psychology and neuroscience have contributed to understanding of human violence in history.

 

 

Introductory Reading:

  • Carroll, Stuart, ed., Cultures of Violence: Interpersonal Violence in Historical Perspective (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007)

  • Ferguson, Niall, War of the World. History’s Age of Hatred (London: Allen Lane, 2006)

  • Kiernan, Ben, Blood and Soil: A World History of Genocide and Extermination from Sparta to Darfur (New Haven, CN: Yale University Press, 2007)

  • Miller, William Ian, Humiliation and Other Essays on Honour, Social Discomfort and Violence (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1995)

  • Pinker, Steven, The Better Angels of Our Nature: The Decline of Violence in History and its Causes (London: Allen Lane, 2011)

  • Spierenburg, Pieter, A History of Murder: Personal Violence in Europe from the Middle Ages to the Present (Cambridge: Polity P., 2008) 

Mughals, Munshis and Mistresses: Society and Rule in Early Colonial India (HT711
Mughals, Munshis and Mistresses: Society and Rule in Early Colonial India
Module Convenor: Dr Erica Wald

Duration: Spring Term, Wednesday (10am-12noon)
 
Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words
 

As a social and cultural history of the ‘Company Raj’, this course will explore the transition from Mughal rule to British colonial rule in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It will examine the interface between ‘Indian’ forms of rule and ‘European’ and what it meant to be each at this time. We will discuss Indian rulers, intermediaries and collaborators in the context of how each shaped early colonial rule in areas of law, education and revenue. We will then turn our attention to a series of contemporary social debates: on the family, sati, education, widow remarriage and social ‘vices’ in order to gain a fuller understanding of this dynamic period in Indian history.
 

Introductory Reading:

  • Bayly, Christopher, Indian Society and the Making of the British Empire (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990)
  • Bates, Crispin, Subalterns and Raj: South Asia Since 1600 (London: Routledge, 2007)
  • Peers, Douglas, India Under Colonial Rule,1700-1885 (London: Routledge, 2006)
  • Mani, Lata, Contentious Traditions: the Debate on Sati in Colonial India (Berkeley: University of California, 1998)
  • Wilson, Jon, The Domination of Strangers: Modern Governance in Eastern India, 1780-1835 (Basingtoke, Palgrave Macmillan, 2008)
HT71137A
Mughals, Munshis and Mistresses: Society and Rule in Early Colonial India
30 CATS

Module Convenor: Dr Erica Wald

Duration: Spring Term, Wednesday (10am-12noon)
 
Assessment: One essay of 5,000 words
 

As a social and cultural history of the ‘Company Raj’, this course will explore the transition from Mughal rule to British colonial rule in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It will examine the interface between ‘Indian’ forms of rule and ‘European’ and what it meant to be each at this time. We will discuss Indian rulers, intermediaries and collaborators in the context of how each shaped early colonial rule in areas of law, education and revenue. We will then turn our attention to a series of contemporary social debates: on the family, sati, education, widow remarriage and social ‘vices’ in order to gain a fuller understanding of this dynamic period in Indian history.
 

Introductory Reading:

  • Bayly, Christopher, Indian Society and the Making of the British Empire (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990)
  • Bates, Crispin, Subalterns and Raj: South Asia Since 1600 (London: Routledge, 2007)
  • Peers, Douglas, India Under Colonial Rule,1700-1885 (London: Routledge, 2006)
  • Mani, Lata, Contentious Traditions: the Debate on Sati in Colonial India (Berkeley: University of California, 1998)
  • Wilson, Jon, The Domination of Strangers: Modern Governance in Eastern India, 1780-1835 (Basingtoke, Palgrave Macmillan, 2008)

Disclaimer
Please note: Modules may be withdrawn in the light of student numbers (minimum of three students per module)

If you are a student from outside the Department of History wishing to take one of the above modules, please contact Kerstin Feurle, k.feurle (@gold.ac.uk) in the first instance. 
Programme specification

Programme specification

To find out more about this degree, including details about the ways you'll be assessed and information about our marking criteria, you can download the programme specification.

Student profile header text

Student and Graduate profiles

Benno MA History, April 2013

Benno

"Goldsmiths shifted my cultural and theoretical horizons."

I learnt a lot at Goldsmiths. Not only did I begin to understand how and why one should and could write politically engaged and culturally open histories, I also found out how British academics go about the things they are dealing with and why South East London is so fascinating and multifacetted.

Goldsmiths equipped me with the skills I needed to write a book on British history. Goldsmiths shifted my cultural and theoretical horizons. And Goldsmiths is the place where I met some of my dearest friends.  

I'm now a Research Scholar at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Center for the History of Emotions. I'm currently working on a project about homosexuality and emotional life in rural West Germany (1960-1990). Based on magazines as well as on oral history interviews I want to show how the emancipation of gay men and lesbians or the gradual normalisation of homosexualities since the 1970s impacted the ways in which women desiring women as well as men desiring men voiced, dealt with and experienced feelings like anger, love, grief and fear.

My previous book compared the legal and administrative handling of ethnically heterogeneous populations in the British and the Habsburg empires between 1867 and 1918. For this work I was recently awarded the Wolfgang J. Mommsen Prize. It will soon be translated into English.

Programme and year of study:

MA in Cultural History (now MA in History), graduated 2000

Benno

MA in Cultural History (now MA in History), graduated 2000

"Goldsmiths shifted my cultural and theoretical horizons."

I learnt a lot at Goldsmiths. Not only did I begin to understand how and why one should and could write politically engaged and culturally open histories, I also found out how British academics go about the things they are dealing with and why South East London is so fascinating and multifacetted.

Goldsmiths equipped me with the skills I needed to write a book on British history. Goldsmiths shifted my cultural and theoretical horizons. And Goldsmiths is the place where I met some of my dearest friends.  

I'm now a Research Scholar at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Center for the History of Emotions. I'm currently working on a project about homosexuality and emotional life in rural West Germany (1960-1990). Based on magazines as well as on oral history interviews I want to show how the emancipation of gay men and lesbians or the gradual normalisation of homosexualities since the 1970s impacted the ways in which women desiring women as well as men desiring men voiced, dealt with and experienced feelings like anger, love, grief and fear.

My previous book compared the legal and administrative handling of ethnically heterogeneous populations in the British and the Habsburg empires between 1867 and 1918. For this work I was recently awarded the Wolfgang J. Mommsen Prize. It will soon be translated into English.

Jon MA History

Jon

"Having nearly finished the course I have found it has widened my ideas about what is and what isn’t History, and how it can be achieved. It has taught me that History is almost never 100% set in stone and is open to revision, reinterpretation and complete rewriting and that perhaps objective truth is a myth which can never be achieved by any historian."

Programme and year of study:

MA in Cultural History (now MA in History)

Jon

MA in Cultural History (now MA in History)

"Having nearly finished the course I have found it has widened my ideas about what is and what isn’t History, and how it can be achieved. It has taught me that History is almost never 100% set in stone and is open to revision, reinterpretation and complete rewriting and that perhaps objective truth is a myth which can never be achieved by any historian."

Careers

Skills and Careers

Skills

The MA develops a range of transferable skills which are highly valued in the jobs market. These include advanced research and analytical expertise; increased independence of thought; the ability to marshal, evaluate and communicate, in written and oral form, complex information and ideas; project management; teamwork and workshop organisation.

Careers

The MA develops a range of transferable skills which are highly valued in the jobs market. These include advanced research and analytical expertise; increased independence of thought; the ability to marshal, evaluate and communicate, in written and oral form, complex information and ideas; project management; teamwork and workshop organisation.

Graduate students from the Department have continued to careers in museums and galleries, archives, journalism, charities, university and arts administration, local government and teaching as well as doctoral research.


Content last modified: 08 Apr 2015

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