Gwybodaeth Modiwlau

Module Identifier
Module Title
Britain And the Islamic World: from 1857 to the Iraq War
Academic Year
Semester 2
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Seminar 5 x 2 Hour Seminars
Lecture 18 x 1 Hour Lectures


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Seminar participation  10%
Semester Assessment 1 x 2,000 word essay  40%
Semester Assessment 1 x 2,500 word essay  50%
Supplementary Assessment 2 x 250 word report in lieu of seminar particpation  10%
Supplementary Assessment 1 x 2,000 word essay  40%
Supplementary Assessment 1 x 2,500 word essay  50%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

1. Identify and discuss key themes such as nationalism, imperialism and orientalism in British relations with the Islamic World.
2. Identify and discuss key aspects of British imperial history, policy making and diplomacy in Islamic regions from the 19th century to the present.
3. Identify and discuss the key features of pan-Islamic, Arab and Indian nationalist movements.
4. Demonstrate an understanding of the historiography and primary sources surrounding controversial issues in the Middle East.

Brief description

This module provides a comprehensive overview of British imperial policies and attitudes towards the Islamic world from their origins in the Indian rebellion in 1857 through to the current conflicts in the Middle East in Iraq and elsewhere. The effects of British imperial policy continue to resonate throughout the Islamic world, including Central and Southern Asia, Northern Africa, and the Middle East. Therefore, understanding the nature of the relationship between the East and West remains a crucial issue in the current geo-political framework. Taking such a long overview from the inception of such policies, though the two world wars, the cold war, decolonization and into the present will provide students with an historical link from the 19th century to the 21st, revealing the complex and dynamic nature of Britain’s relationship with the Islamic world. Furthermore, the module aims to equip students with core theoretical, conceptual and historical knowledge that will provide them with solid grounding in British imperialism.


The module is taught through a combination of lectures and seminars. It is divided into four chronological periods:
Victorian/Edwardian Era (1857-1914): Introduces students to key historical concepts such as orientalism, imperialism and Victorian notions of civilization, exploitation, administration diplomacy and key moments which illustrate these points. It will also reveal the rise of nationalism and the relationship of these ‘nationalisms’ with Islam.

The Warring Era (1914-1945): Will illustrate the evolution of imperial policies and the effects of the First World War on the key regions such as Southern Asia and the Middle East. This will follow on to the Second World and will further explore the role of nationalism and self-determination.

The Cold War Era(1945-1991): This explore themes such as the bi-polar world, decolonization, intelligence, and nationalism on Britain’s relationship with the Islamic world

The Contemporary Era (1991-present): This will focus on the Britain’s legacy in the Middle East and Asia and will explore how interventions in Iraq and elsewhere have perpetuated this legacy.

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number N/A
Communication Students will learn how to present their ideas verbally and in writing, and how to present their arguments most effectively. They will develop skills in using the many sources of information available to best advantage. They will learn to be clear in their writing and speaking and to be direct about aims and objectives. They will learn to consider only that which is relevant to the topic, focus and objectives of their argument or discussion. Students will also be required to submit their written assessments in word-processed format and the presentation of work should reflect effective expression of ideas and good use of language skills in order to ensure clarity, coherence and effective communication.
Improving own Learning and Performance The module aims to promote self-management but within a context in which support and assistance is available from the module convenor and other students. Students will be expected to improve their own learning and performance by undertaking their own research and exercising their own initiative, including searching for sources and deciding how to answer assessed essay questions.
Information Technology Students will enhance their proficiency using Blackboard, where materials to support learning will be made available. Students will also develop skills in searching for, and assessing the validity of, online information sources as part of preparation for lectures, seminars and assessed tasks. Assessed work will be presented in electronic format, according to standard expectations.
Personal Development and Career planning The module is designed to hone and test skills of use to students in their working lives, particularly in speaking to small groups, listening, thinking and responding to the statement of others. Moreover, the written work requires students to write clearly and concisely, which is a common task in the workplace. Students will be encouraged throughout to reflect on their performance and to consider lessons for future application
Problem solving Independent work and problem solving will be one central goal of the module; the preparation of two assessed pieces of written work will require that students develop independent research skills as well as problem solving skills. The ability of students to solve problems will be developed and assessed by asking them to: adopt differing points of view; organize data and formulate an answer to the problem; reason logically; construct theoretical arguments; divide issues into smaller problems.
Research skills Students will be required to undertake independent research in order to complete the assessed work. This will involve utilizing a range of information sources, including core academic texts, journal articles, EU electronic publications, and online news sources.
Subject Specific Skills Students have the opportunity to develop, practice and test a wide range of subject specific skills that help them to understand, conceptualise and evaluate examples and ideas on the module. These subject specific skills include: • Collect and understand a wide range of data relating to the module • Evaluate competing perspectives • Apply a range of methodologies to complex historical and contemporary social and political problems.
Team work Students will undertake team exercises in the seminars. For many of the topics of this module, seminars will consist of small-group discussions where students will be asked to discuss as a group the core issues related to the seminar topic. These class discussions and debates form a significant part of the module, and will allow students to approach and examine a given topic through team work.


This module is at CQFW Level 5