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IR3304   The International, Modernity and Contemporary Gulf Politics

Academic year(s): 2023-2024

Key information

SCOTCAT credits : 30

ECTS credits : 15

Level : SCQF level 9

Semester: 2

Planned timetable: Tues 1pm

This module examines Gulf politics and modernity through the international. Drawing on international historical sociology, the module investigates various instances, through which Gulf politics is socially connected to the international arena, and by which Gulf modernity is represented. Beyond conventional disciplinary boundaries of International Relations, the module relies on different bodies of literature on historiography, sociology, political economy, and social anthropology. It aims to offer a historically and sociologically informed understanding of contemporary Gulf socio-political development from the early phase of capitalist formation onward. The module is structured around two blocs of teaching. The first bloc touches on the major conceptual themes and is followed by the second bloc of case studies. Previous experience of studying politics and international relations of the Middle East will be beneficial but not essential.

Relationship to other modules

Pre-requisite(s): Before taking this module you must pass IR2006

Learning and teaching methods and delivery

Weekly contact: 1-hour lecture (X11 weeks) and 1-hour tutorial (X10 weeks)

Scheduled learning hours: 56

Guided independent study hours: 260

Assessment pattern

As used by St Andrews: Coursework = 50%, 3-hour Written Examination = 40%, Tutorial Presentation = 10%

As defined by QAA
Written examinations : 40%
Practical examinations : 10%
Coursework: 50%

Re-assessment: 3-hour Written Examination = 100%


Module coordinator: Dr H Lai
Module teaching staff: Dr Hsinyen Lai

Intended learning outcomes

  • acquire an understanding of the concepts and theories of international historical sociology,
  • acquire a historically and sociologically informed understanding of contemporary Gulf politics,
  • develop an ability to analyses the interplay among international, regional and national socio-political dynamics in the Gulf through case studies.
  • articulate arguments and respond to questions through presentations and discussion,
  • develop research and analytical skills by writing an assessed academic essay.