Module and Programme Catalogue

Search site

Find information on

2022/23 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

SLSP1150 Politics and Social Transformation

20 creditsClass Size: 45

Module manager: Dr Hizer Mir

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

Year running 2022/23

This module is mutually exclusive with

GEOG1500Global Geopolitics, Migration and Uneven Development

This module is approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This interdisciplinary module will introduce you to a range of key debates in the disciplines of political science, political sociology and political geography. Students will explore the questions 'what is politics?', 'what is the domain of the political?', 'what are the foundations of political life?' and 'what is the purpose of politics?'. Through an examination of theoretical and empirical research we will consider the social consequences of political action and how political action is shaped by social factors. A concern with 'social transformation' will provide the organising principle for this module. We will consider the relationship between a series of social transformations and the nature of politics - its actors, practices, effects and parameters. The module will consider how social transformations since 1945, in particular the journey beyond modernity, processes of globalisation, securitization and/or the advent of the 'risk society' and increasing mediatisation are leading to new ways of acting, thinking and 'being', politically. We will also consider how these changes threaten existing institutions, whilst at the same time institutionalized forms and forces develop ever more ingenious ways of governing and controlling populations.During your studies you will explore a series of central debates regarding the character of politics, power and resistance, the state, democracy, the nation, social citizenship, civil society, and the impact of globalization and terrorism on politics at the national and global levels.


This module will introduce students to a series of key concepts and debates within and across political sociology, political science and political geography. Although hosted by the School of Sociology and Social Policy (SSP), it will be a collaborative module run by a team of academics from SSP, the School of Politics and International Relations and School of Geography. The module will be truly interdisciplinary, with students being encouraged and supported to bring different disciplinary perspectives into 'dialogue', identifying points of connection and strengths/weaknesses of alternative perspectives.

Students will be introduced to key debates regarding the character of politics, power and resistance, the state, democracy, the nation, social citizenship, civil society, and the impact of globalization and terrorism on politics at the national and global levels.

The module will provide students with an opportunity to engage in debates about these issues as they relate to the world today. The module will enhance their abilities with regard to critical analysis. Students will be encouraged to consider the values and ethics of research and explore their own positionality - in this regard the module has the potential to be personally transformative. The module will focus upon providing foundational knowledge to support further study of a range of topics in the fields of political science, political sociology and political geography.

Learning outcomes
The module will:

- enhance students' awareness of the transition to 'later'/'liquid' or 'post' modernity; processes of globalisation; securitization and advent of the risk society;

- furnish students with knowledge and understanding of a range of competing theoretical perspectives on power and the state;

- equip students with a broader understanding of how different theorists or schools of thought, from classic to contemporary have defined and understood 'civil society';

- develop students' awareness of the contested nature of concepts such as 'democracy', 'citizenship' and 'welfare';

- equip students with an understanding of the main traditions of social movement theory (American versus European traditions) and the concept of identity politics and critiques thereof.


The module will consider the following themes:
- What is Politics?
- Theorising Power
- Theorising the State
- Democracy and its Discontents
- Nations and Nationalism
- Social Citizenship and the Politics of Welfare
- The Role of Civil Society
- Social Movements and Protest
- Identity and Post-Identity Politics
- Cosmopolitan and Post-national Formations
- Politics post-9/11: Risk and Security

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
On-line Learning151.0015.00
Drop-in Session51.005.00
Private study hours170.00
Total Contact hours30.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

Private Study:
30 hours reading supporting learning units,
75 hours reading for seminars and completing workbook
65 hours revision

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Will be monitored via weekly work conducted as part of a 'workbook' assessment worth 50% of overall marks for the module.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay1 x 1,500 words50.00
Online Assessment10 x 300 word workbook submissions50.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

If a student fails the workbook assignment, they will be asked to complete a 1 hour unseen short-answer resit paper at the next available resit period.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 29/04/2022 15:30:02


Browse Other Catalogues

Errors, omissions, failed links etc should be notified to the Catalogue Team.PROD

© Copyright Leeds 2019