HR106-4-SP-CO:
Democracy in Europe and the United States, 1789-1989

The details
2024/25
Philosophical, Historical and Interdisciplinary Studies (School of)
Colchester Campus
Spring
Undergraduate: Level 4
Current
Monday 13 January 2025
Friday 21 March 2025
15
10 April 2024

 

Requisites for this module
(none)
(none)
(none)
(none)

 

(none)

Key module for

BA T700 American Studies (United States),
BA T702 American Studies (United States) (UK Study),
BA T708 American Studies (United States) (Including Year Abroad),
BA T710 American Studies (United States) (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad),
BA T712 American Studies (United States) (UK Study) (Including Placement Year),
BA T770 American Studies (United States) (including Placement Year),
BA MT26 Criminology and American Studies (UK Study),
BA MT27 Criminology and American Studies (Including Year Abroad),
BA MT28 Criminology and American Studies (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad),
BA MT2R Criminology and American Studies,
BA MT3R Criminology and American Studies (Including Placement Year),
BA MT62 Criminology and American Studies (UK Study) (Including Placement Year),
BA R000 European Studies (Including Year Abroad),
BA R001 European Studies,
BA R002 European Studies (Including Placement Year),
BA R008 European Studies (Including Foundation Year),
BA R9R1 European Studies with French,
BA R9R8 European Studies with French (Including Foundation Year),
BA R9R2 European Studies with German,
BA R9R6 European Studies with German (Including Foundation Year),
BA R9R3 European Studies with Italian,
BA R9R7 European Studies with Italian (Including Foundation Year),
BA R9R4 European Studies with Spanish,
BA R9R9 European Studies with Spanish (Including Foundation Year),
BA L903 Global Studies,
BA L904 Global Studies (including year abroad),
BA L905 Global Studies (Including Placement Year),
BA L908 Global Studies (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad),
BA LR04 Global Studies and Modern Languages (Including Year Abroad),
BA R104 Global Studies and Language Studies,
BA R105 Global Studies and Language Studies (Including Foundation Year),
BA L994 Global Studies with Latin American Studies,
BA L995 Global Studies with Latin American Studies (Including Foundation Year),
BA L996 Global Studies with Latin American Studies (including Placement Year),
BA L997 Global Studies with Latin American Studies (including Year Abroad),
BA L990 Global Studies and Latin American Studies,
BA L991 Global Studies and Latin American Studies (Including Foundation Year),
BA L992 Global Studies and Latin American Studies (including Placement Year),
BA L993 Global Studies and Latin American Studies (including Year Abroad)

Module description

This module will explore the development of democracy in Europe and the United States over the last 200 years.


The module will examine how democratic states were established, challenged and reborn from the late eighteenth century to the late twentieth century. It will also investigate the crisis of the welfare state, the rise of Neo-Liberalism, and the rise of populism - all challenges to democratic systems in the past and today.

Module aims

The aims of this module are:


To help students to understand:



  • To understand the concepts and arguments about democracy and democratisation in Europe and the United States.

  • To understand the significance of the growth of democracies from the late eighteenth to the late twentieth centuries.

  • How to analyse challenges to democracy at different times.

  • How to read, understand and synthesis historical works about democracy.

  • How to develop clear and coherent arguments in both spoken and written form about the development of democracy, and its impacts on individuals and societies.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module, students will be expected to be able to:



  1. Demonstrate an awareness of the significance of democracy in shaping modern European and the United States history.

  2. Show critical understanding of secondary scholarship on the history of democracy in Europe and the United States..

  3. Formulate independent arguments on the development of democracy in different contexts across time.

  4. Present their findings orally in seminar discussions, and in writing as part of their assessment.

Module information

Democracy cannot be taken for granted. There was a long road to modern democracy and universal suffrage. Evolution of existing systems, revolutions, and wars created what is generally called Western Democracy.


Europe experienced dictatorships, two World Wars and the fall of the Iron curtain in this time period, but it also saw the expansion of citizenship and civil liberties, the establishment of parliamentary democracies on a global scale and the emergence of the welfare states with greater social provisions for its populations


In the year that followed its creation, the United States rapidly expanded its franchise, but it also continued to exclude many people from the democratic process well into the twentieth century.


Introductory reading



  • Ricardo Blaug & John Schwarzmantel (Ed.), Democracy: A Reader (Edinburgh 2016).

  • Roger D Congleton, Perfecting Parliament: Constitutional Reform, Liberalism, and the Rise of Western Democracy (Cambridge 2011).

  • Geoff Eley, Forging Democracy: The Left and the Struggle for Democracy in Europe, 1850-2000 (Oxford, 2002).

  • Jack L. Luzkow, The Great Forgetting: The Past, Present, and Future of Social Democracy and the Welfare State (Manchester 2015).

  • Richard Schneirov and Gaston A. Fernandez, Democracy as a Way of Life in America: A History (London, 2013).

  • David Stasavage, The Decline and Rise of Democracy: A Global History from Antiquity to Today (Princeton, 2020).

  • Sean Wilentz, The Rise of American Democracy: Jefferson to Lincoln (New York, 2007).


Learning and teaching methods

This module will be delivered via:

  • Lectures.
  • Seminars.

Bibliography*

This module does not appear to have a published bibliography for this year.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   Formative essay (1000 words)    0% 
Coursework   Essay (2500 words)    100% 

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%

Reassessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Felix Schnell, email: fschnell@essex.ac.uk.
History UG Administrators: hrugadmin@essex.ac.uk

 

Availability
Yes
Yes
No

External examiner

Dr Miriam Dobson
University of Sheffield
Reader
Dr Ingeborg Dornan
Brunel University London
Reader in History
Resources
Available via Moodle
No lecture recording information available for this module.

 


* Please note: due to differing publication schedules, items marked with an asterisk (*) base their information upon the previous academic year.

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