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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Postgraduate (School of History and Classics)

Postgraduate Course: War and Identities in Twentieth Century Britain and Ireland (PGHC11339)

Course Outline
School School of History, Classics and Archaeology College College of Humanities and Social Science
Course type Standard Availability Available to all students
Credit level (Normal year taken) SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) Credits 20
Home subject area Postgraduate (School of History and Classics) Other subject area None
Course website None Taught in Gaelic? No
Course description Wars have played a fundamental role in the construction and representation of national identities in twentieth century Britain and Ireland. This MSc option adopts a social and cultural perspective on the impact of war on British and Irish society, taking a detailed look at the interplay between national, ethnic, class and gender identities at a time of conflict. It uses case studies of different national and ethnic groups to explore and investigate aspects of identity formation during the Boer War, World War One and World War Two. It looks at the individual histories of Ireland and Britain but also examines how war influenced the relationship between the two countries. Primarily, it considers how war affects the construction of national identities in Britain and the extent to which an overarching sense of Britishness is negotiated, accommodated or contested during wartime. By addressing ethnic identities, in addition to military and civilian/domestic identities, this module also addresses wider questions of citizenship and belonging. In particular, it considers how the histories and settlement of different ethnic groups have influenced the construction of national identities. In relation to Ireland, this module investigates how the militarism of World War One underpinned the militancy of the post-war era and investigates how key events of the war (the Somme, Easter Rising) had an impact on the evolution of specific commemorative rituals in the north and south. It also explores Irish neutrality during World War Two and its impact on national identity.
The module focuses particularly on the connections between national identity and the memory of war: the ways in which different wars have been narrated, remembered and commemorated both temporally and spatially. It sets out to critically examine the ways in which memories of war are utilised by different social and political groups to inform the identity politics of the present. It also adopts an inter-disciplinary approach drawing upon oral sources, film, literature, art and photography and aims to make use of the internet in imaginative ways.
Entry Requirements
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisites None
Displayed in Visiting Students Prospectus? No
Course Delivery Information
Delivery period: 2010/11 Semester 2, Available to all students (SV1) WebCT enabled:  Yes Quota:  None
Location Activity Description Weeks Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
No Classes have been defined for this Course
First Class First class information not currently available
No Exam Information
Summary of Intended Learning Outcomes
Students who successfully complete the course will have acquired an advanced knowledge and understanding of key aspects of the study of war and identity in twentieth century Britain and Ireland. In particular, they will:
&∑ be able to analyse independently historical evidence concerning this topic;
&∑ engage in historical arguments in relation to war, memory and the construction of identities;
&∑ understand the significant historiographical trends which have emerged addressing national identity and notions of Britishness
&∑ understand the impact of war on society and its role in the social and cultural history of twentieth century Britain and Ireland;
&∑ develop an appreciation of how the study of a key topic in historiography can widen their historical horizon and research agenda;
&∑ set their own historical research agenda in relation to the historiography of war and identity in Britain and Ireland;
&∑ prepare and present their own work for seminars and workshops;
&∑ actively participate in group discussion;
&∑ and be able to make efficient use of library and IT resources and new technologies.
Assessment Information
One 3000 word essay
Special Arrangements
Additional Information
Academic description Not entered
Syllabus The course belongs to the MSc in Modern British and Irish History and the MScT in History and is designed as an option for students at the MSc level in the School of History, Classics and Archaeology. Students from other MSc programmes in the College of Humanities and Social Science may be admitted to this course subject to the approval of the Course Organiser.

The course aims to encourage students to explore the expanding literature on war, identity and memory in twentieth century Britain and Ireland and to engage with key debates within the historiography. By increasing historical knowledge relating to the formation of national identities in Britain and Ireland, it seeks to help students to identify research topics for further investigation within an MSc dissertation or PhD thesis. In examining the long-term impact of war on identity formation in Britain and Ireland, the course will focus particularly on the importance of commemorative rituals, popular culture and memory. It aims to analyse various aspects of national identity, the creation of a British identity and the development of alternative identities, turning the spotlight on ethnic and gender identities. By addressing the wartime experiences of different immigrant groups, this module will also analyse the racialisation of different immigrant groups in Britain and in particular, notions of plurality and hybridity amongst long-established groups. It will also address how the concept of $ýbelonging&© was reconfigured after the Second World War to exclude immigrants from the colonies and New Commonwealth.

The module will adopt a broad chronological overview, addressing the Boer War, World War One and World War Two (and their long-term impact). The topics discussed in the course will include: war and ethnicity, the racialisation of belonging, martial masculinities, gender identities, $ývectors of memory&© and commemorative rituals, contested notions of Britishness, the People&©s War, Irish neutrality during World War Two and memorial processes within nationalist and unionist communities in Ireland.
Transferable skills Not entered
Reading list Introductory readings
J. J. Lee, Ireland, 1912- 1985: Politics and Society (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990)
Peter Mandler, $ýWhat is &ęNational Identity&™? Definition and Application in Modern British Historiography&©, Modern Intellectual History, 3 (2006), 271-97
I. McBride, $ýMemory and national identity in modern Ireland&© in I. McBride (ed.), History and Memory in Modern Ireland (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001), pp. 1-42.
K. Robbins, Great Britain. Identities, Institutions and the Idea of Britishness (Harlow: Addison Wesley, 1998)
P. Ward, Britishness Since 1870 (London: Routledge, 2004)
R. Weight, Patriots: National Identity in Britain 1940-2000 (London, Macmillan, 2002), pp. 1-19.
R. Weight and A. Beach (eds), The Right to Belong: Citizenship and National Identity in Britain 1930-60 (London : Tauris, 1983) Introduction, pp. 1-18.
Key texts
[In addition to the following, this course will make extensive use of online journal articles]

P. Bew, Ideology and the Irish Question: Ulster Unionism and Irish Nationalism, 1912-1916 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1994)
B. Bousquet and C. Douglas, West Indian Women at War: British Racism in World War Two, (London: Lawrence & Wishart, 1991)
T. Bowman, Irish Regiments in the Great War: Discipline and Morale (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2004)
A. Calder The People&©s War. Britain 1939-1945, (London: Pimlico, 6th edn, 1996)
E. A. Cameron Impaled Upon a Thistle. Scotland Since 1880 (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2010)
S. Caunce, E Mazierska, S Sydney-Smith and J K Walton (eds), Relocating Britishness (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2004)
H. Cecil and P H. Liddell (eds), Facing Armageddon. The First World War Experienced (London: Leo Cooper, 1996)
D. Cesarani and T. Kushner (eds) The Internment of Aliens in Twentieth Century Britain (London: Frank Cass, 1993)
R.Colls, Identity of England (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004)
M. Cragoe and C. Williams (eds), Wales and War: Society, Politics and Religion in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2007)
T. Curtis (ed.), Wales at War. Critical Essays on Literature and Art (Brigend: Seren, 2007)
G. De Groot, Blighty: British Society in the Era of the Great War (London: Longman, 1996)
A. Dolan, Commemorating the Irish Civil War: History and Memory, 1923-2000 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003)
M. Evans and K. Lunn (eds) War and Memory in the Twentieth Century (Oxford: Berg, 1997)
S. Featherstone, Englishness: Twentieth Century Popular Culture and the Forming of English Identity (Edinburgh: Edinburgh, 2008)
M. Francis, The Flyer: British Culture and the Royal Air Force 1939-1945 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008)
D. French, Military Identities: The Regimental System, the British Army and the British People, c. 1870-2000 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005)
A. Gaffney, Aftermath: Remembering the Great War in Wales (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 1998)
J. R. Gillis, Commemorations: The Politics of National Identity (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1996)
B Girvin, The Emergency. Neutral Ireland 1939-45 (London: Pan, 2nd edn, 2007)
B Girvin and G. Roberts (eds), Ireland and the Second World War. Politics, Society and Remembrance (Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2000)
A. Gregory and S. Paseta (eds), Ireland and the Great War. $ýA War to Unite Us All?&© (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002)
Study Abroad Not entered
Study Pattern Not entered
Keywords Not entered
Course organiser Dr Wendy Ugolini
Tel: (0131 6)50 3755
Course secretary Mrs Lindsay Scott
Tel: (0131 6)50 9948
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