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2022/23 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

HIST1520 Global Decolonization

20 creditsClass Size: 150

Module manager: Dr Anyaa Anim-Addo

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2022/23

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, empires gave way to an international system of politically independent nation-states. This process is known as ‘decolonization’. This module explores the processes and consequences of decolonization and the ways that imperial decline has shaped the world we live in today. This module explores different case studies of decolonization across time and space. It also examines key factors that shaped local and global experiences of decolonization, including issues of race, gender, and violence.


This module explores the end of empire and how this has shaped the modern world. It will introduce students to key case studies and themes in the history of imperial decline and political independence movements.
This module explores:
a) Causes of imperial decline
b) The emergence of politically independent nation-states from empires
c) Decolonization’s political, economic, social and cultural impacts on former colonies and imperial centres of power
d) Ways of thinking comparatively about different instances of decolonization

Learning outcomes
1. Demonstrate an understanding of how states, groups, and individuals have existed, acted, and thought in a range of colonies and postcolonial states.
2. Demonstrate an understanding of how and why decolonization took place.
3. Demonstrate an awareness of decolonization’s diverse impacts on societies across the world.
4. Recognise different historical arguments about the causes and consequences of the changes examined in this module.
5. Appreciate the range, value, and challenges of a selection of primary sources from individuals and groups involved in decolonization.
6. Present a structured and coherent analysis based on appropriate and relevant historical sources in assignments set by tutors.
7. Apply fundamental standards and practices of historical study for research, discussion, and assessed work.


Topics may include:
• Chronological overview of decolonization in the 19th and 20th centuries
• ‘Independence’, ‘Liberty’, and 19th Century Decolonization
• ‘Self-Determination’ and early 20th Century Decolonization
• Nationalism and Anti-Colonial Thought
• Political processes in mid-20th Century Decolonization
• Postcolonial State-Creation
• Violence and late 20th Century Decolonization
• Decolonization, race, and gender
• Decolonization’s Internationalism: Institutions, Movements, and the Cold War
• Decolonization and ‘Decoloniality’ in the 21st Century

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours178.00
Total Contact hours22.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

- Undertaking core reading and other activities in preparation for seminars: 55 hours
- Reviewing and consolidating notes on lectures: 22 hours
- Identifying gaps in their knowledge and self-directed reading to address these: 22 hours
- Researching, preparing, and writing assignments: 75 hours
- Reflecting on feedback and implementing suggestions in future assignments: 4 hours

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

1 x 750-word book/article review, for which written feedback will be provided to help students prepare the primary source commentary and essay. Students will have the opportunity to discuss their feedback in a one-to-one meeting.
3 x 500-word primary source primary source commentaries, for which written feedback will be provided to help students prepare the essay.
1 x 2,500-word essay, for which written feedback will be provided.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay2,500 word essay due in Exam Week 160.00
Assignment3 x 500-word primary source commentary due in Week 940.00
Literature Review750-word book/article review due in Week 60.00
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: 15/06/2022


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