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2018/19 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

SLSP5315M Power, Critique & Global Transformations

15 creditsClass Size: 40

Module manager: Dr Austin Harrington

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2018/19

This module is not approved as an Elective

Module summary

The module explores a rich tradition of critical theory with specific reference to power and global transformations, focusing upon the nature and impact of shifts in culture, economics, politics, and populations to understand better the various conflicts and pressures wrought by contemporary patterns of social change. It will engage students with contemporary debates drawing on a wealth of established and emerging theory and concepts.


The module equips students with an advanced understanding of the theoretical and philosophical framework of critical theory in order to understand power and global transformations in such a way that enables the application of conceptual, theoretical, empirical and critical insights into historical and contemporary events at the heart of social and political thought.

Learning outcomes
On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:
• demonstrate in-depth, extended or specialist knowledge in critical theory at the forefront of current research and thinking in this area, with specific reference to the issue of power in contemporary global societies;
• exhibit competence in the exercise of advanced critical thinking and analytical techniques relevant to the robust analysis of global social, economic, cultural and political realities;
• take a proactive and self-reflective role in working and to develop professional working relationships with peers, staff and others;
• proactively formulate ideas, arguments and hypotheses relevant to the study of critical theory, power, and global transformation including research and advanced scholarship within the discipline of sociology and in social and political theory;
• evaluate critically current issues and research in social and political thought and related subjects as relevant to the substantive areas of power and global transformations.


The syllabus for his module will be drawn from a range of relevant topics, which could include but not be limited to:
beyond neoliberalism?; theorizing imperialism and post-colonialism; global power elites; indebted societies of control; bio-politics and governmentality; cosmopolitanism; Frankfurt School critical theory; Americanization; mobilities, and migrations; media, culture and power; power and global cities; power, protest and resistance.

Teaching methods

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours128.00
Total Contact hours22.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)150.00

Private study

Synthesise and critically review appropriate theoretical / conceptual material on global transformations as relevant to this issue of power [68 hours]
Prepare for formal assessment [60 hours]

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Attendance and contributions at each workshop will be closely monitored.

Methods of assessment

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay or Dissertation3000 words100.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 21/12/2018


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