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2022/23 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

HIST2565 Histories of Black Britain

20 creditsClass Size: 14

Module manager: Dr Dhanveer Brar

Taught: Semesters 1 & 2 (Sep to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2022/23

This module is approved as a discovery module

Module summary

Histories of Black Britain offers students the opportunity to examine the construction of knowledge about the past and consider how it shapes ideas about Blackness and Britishness today. Students will learn key research skills to enable them to research Black British History, critically examine various sources of knowledge production from archives and libraries, to monuments and museums, to social media and cultural texts. Students will be introduced to key concepts in Black Studies such as critical race theory and use them to develop their own syllabus.


Students on this module will learn how to think critically about how knowledge is produced and how this shapes our understanding of and access to Black British History. The module will engage with the long history of black history making and black history makers up unto contemporary debates around Decolonizing the Curriculum. Students will investigate how race, gender, class and sexuality shape knowledge production about the past and learn how to research, find and interpret primary sources on Black British History. The module will develop key research skills for carrying out independent research and provide excellent preparation for final year projects.

Learning outcomes
Students studying this module will
1. develop and learn to apply different methodological and historical approaches to the study of Black British History.
2. consider how present-day understandings of race, gender, class and sexuality shape the way in which we research and write histories of Britain and race.
3. develop the skills to enable them to research, find and interpret primary sources on Black British history.
4. be able to build a portfolio of primary sources around a particular theme in Black British history.
5. identify and critique historical works on the history of Britain
6. develop teamworking skills and an ability to reflect both on the process of co-construction and the nature of this field of history.



Students will be co-producers of knowledge about what constitutes Black History. To enable this key themes might include:

Black Studies and the Production of Knowledge
Critical Race Theory
Migration and Mobilities
Theories of Resistance
Black Feminisms
Family and the Everyday
Remembering and Reparations

Teaching sessions will run fortnightly through the year, supported by a convenor consistently present alongside alternating lecturers who will each take the lead on a theme / case study as indicated (but not limited to those) above. Seminars at intervals in the course will be kept clear for introductions and assessment.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Independent online learning hours77.00
Private study hours100.00
Total Contact hours23.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

Students will be expected to read and investigate the theme for each seminar as directed by the module leader and visiting lecturer that week. This might involve set 'case study' readings, theoretical readings, or investigating online and archival materials. The exact nature of the preparation will vary depending on the visiting lecturer that week and their plans for the session. Students will need to meet in groups outside of class time to work on their historical timelines.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Students will be exposed to a wide range of approaches through the eight seminars led by a series of different weekly lecturers during this module. To maintain consistency and support, all seminars will be co-led by one of the module leaders and this person will act as the tutor / supervisor for the design and production of the two assessment pieces. Formative feedback will be provided throughout the seminar series via all teaching staff, including by visiting colleagues leading and responding to students during sessions, comments on any informal presentations completed in class, and guidance on reading and ideas. A structure of four supervision meetings across the year will allow students to develop their assessment pieces with their tutor and gain formative feedback on their progress. Students will annotate up to eight primary sources during the year for which they will receive formative feedback, but will submit four of these as part of the final portfolio

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Group ProjectTimeline of Black British history, produced in groups, supported by a 1000-word individual reflection. Due by 12 noon on Monday of week 8, semester 240.00
PortfolioA portfolio of up to 3000 words that includes an historiographical essay and annotated primary sources, due by 12 noon on Monday of week 11, semester 260.00
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: 31/08/2022


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