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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Social and Political Science : South Asian Studies

Undergraduate Course: South Asia in the World (SAST08003)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Social and Political Science CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 1 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummarySouth Asia in the World is an interdisciplinary course which offers undergraduate students a first understanding of the Society, Politics, Culture and Economics of South Asia and provides a critical assessment of its growing significance in world politics and the global economy. It introduces students to the history, social, cultural and political dynamics of the region. Key themes which will be covered in the course are for instance (a) what is the lasting legacy of Partition on the political and economic integration of the region? (b) How have the main South Asian states tackled poverty, inequality and economic development; (c) Why is there so much gender inequality in South Asia and what have various states done to address it? (d) What are the main social cleavages (based on ethnicity, tribe, caste, religion) in South Asia, how have the states of South Asia sought to accommodate these differences and why have they developed different pathways in this regard? (d) To what extent has the liberalization of the South Asian economies affected their development and what have been the costs and benefits of globalization? What role has India played, as the largest South Asian country in world trade and climate change negotiations? (e) To what extent does the India-Pakistan rivalry affect the regional integration of South Asia, politically and economically? (f) Is India a rising power?
Course description The course aims to cover the following topics (preferably in the order stated here): -- Note this list is indicative and subject to minor change
(1) The puzzle of South Asia: an introduction for social scientists;
(2) The colonial experience in (British) India
(3) The Politics of Partition and its Legacy today
(4) Markers of Identity (1): caste in theory and practice;
(5) Markers of identity (2) religion ¿ introduction to Hinduism and shared concepts in Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism
(6) Markers of identity (3) religion: Islam in South Asia
(7) The Politics of religion: Hindu nationalism and Communal Politics
(8) Markers of identify (4): The Scheduled Tribes/Adivasis and the Indian State
(9) Markers of identity (5) territory: Territorial management in South Asia I: Indian federalism in theory and practice
(10) Territorial management in South Asia II: Sri Lanka, Nepal and Pakistan
(11) Gender in South Asia I : Gender Politics & Women Movements in India
(12) Gender in South Asia II Gender Politics & Women Movements in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh
(13) South Asia and the Politics of Development: I from state led-development to liberalization?
(14) South Asia and the Politics of Development II: Comparing South Asian practices in addressing inequalities and poverty alleviation
(15) South Asia and the Politics of Development III: Health
(16) South Asia and the Politics of Development IV: Climate change and Energy
(17) South Asia in the World I: India and the WTO
(18) South Asia in the World II: India-Pakistan: enduring rivalries and its effect on regional integration in South Asia
(19) South Asia in the World: India as an emerging regional power?
(20) Revision class
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2020/21, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  100
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 19, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 10, Summative Assessment Hours 2, Revision Session Hours 1, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 164 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 55 %, Coursework 45 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Essay, 2500 words: 45%
Take home exam: 55%
Feedback Essays will be returned with feedback within 15 working days of submission.
Generic exam feedback will be posted on Learn; individualized exam feedback will be made available on the exam feedback form.
Individual tutorial participation will be assessed by returning an individual tutorial marking sheet to students at the end of the course
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S2 (April/May)2:00
Resit Exam Diet (August)2:00
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate a good understanding of the complex issues and theoretical and empirical debates surrounding the politics, society and economics of South Asia.
  2. Develop an ability to compare and contrast between South Asian nations on issues such as the management of ethnic conflict, poverty alleviation and income inequality.
  3. Demonstrate analytical skills and independent research in preparation for their essay.
  4. Demonstrate analytical skills and an ability to synthesize aspects of the course content during a two hour sat exam.
  5. Engage critically with the work of scholars on South Asia and evaluate their arguments.
Reading List
Bates, C. (2007), Subalterns and the Raj, South Asia since 1600 (London: Routledge)
Brass P. (2012) Routledge Handbook of South Asian Politics (London: Routledge)
Gordon S (2014) India¿s rise as an Asian Power: Nation, Neighborhood and Region (South Asia and World Affairs: Georgetown University Press)
Rehman, S. (2010) Challenging the Injustice of Poverty: agendas for inclusive development in South Asia (Delhi: Sage)
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills By the end of the course students should have strengthened their skills in:
- analysing evidence and using this to develop and support a line of argument through essay and exam
- presenting information orally (tutorials)

KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Hugo Gorringe
Tel: (0131 6)50 3940
Course secretaryMiss Grace Oliver
Tel: (0131 6)51 1337
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