Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Intended for use in future years

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 17 x 1-hour lectures
Seminars / Tutorials 5 x 2-hour seminars


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment 1 x 1,000 word Review  20%
Semester Assessment 1 x 1,000 word Assignment  20%
Semester Assessment 1 x 3,500 word Essay  60%

Learning Outcomes

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

1. Explain the Origins of the Arab-Israel dispute in the first half of the 20th century
2. Evaluate the emergence of the modern Zionist movement
3. Discuss and analyse key political developments in Israel and the Arab states after 1948
4. Demonstrate awareness of the core elements of the political dispute between Israel and the Palestinians
5. Demonstrate awareness of the core elements of the political dispute between Israel and the Arab States
6. Analyse and evaluate developments in Israeli strategic thinking after 1948
7. Discuss the central strategic and military elements of the 5 major Arab-Israeli Wars between 1948 and 1982
8. Evaluate and explain the political and strategic consequences of the 5 major Arab-Israeli Wars between 1948 and 1982
9. Display through discussion and written work an awareness of the key elements of the chief bids to achieve a peace settlement between Israel and the Arabs since 1948
10. Locate the Arab-Israeli wars within their broader international context in the second half of the 20th century

Brief description

This module aims to provide students with an understanding of the course of Arab-Israeli conflict and peacemaking from the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948 through to the outbreak of the al-Aqsa Intifada in September 2000. Particular attention is paid to the major Arab-Israeli wars of 1948, 1956, 1967, 1973 and 1982. Students will be encouraged to understand these conflicts in their broader regional and international context.


Part I. `One Land, Two Peoples': Zionism & Palestine

1. `Next Year in Jerusalem': Zionism in Theory & Practice
2. `Revolution Until Victory': the Palestinian National Movement
3. Britain and the Palestine Mandate

Part II. The Arab-Israeli Wars

4. Israel's `War of Independence'
5. "A Nation in Arms": the IDF & the Development of Israeli Strategic Doctrine
6. 1956: The Suez-Sinai War
7. 1967: The `Six Day War'
8. The War of Attrition
9. 1973: The `Yom Kippur War'
10. 1982: `Peace for Galilee': War in the Lebanon
11. The War of the Fedayeen: Israel & the Palestinian Guerrillas

Part III. World Politics & the Arab-Israel Dispute

12. `A Special Relationship?' Israel & the United States
13. The Soviet Union & the Arab Cause
14. Europe & the Arab-Israel Dispute

Part IV. Peacemaking

15. Peace Efforts before Camp David
16. `Breakthrough': Camp David & the Egyptian-Israeli Peace Treaty
17. The Rise and Fall of the Oslo Peace Process

1. The Contested History of `1948'
2. War and Politics in the Age of Nasser, 1952-70
3. War & Peace with Egypt, 1970-80
4. World Politics & the Arab-Israel Dispute
5. Israel and the Palestinians since 1964


This module has a particular focus on the political and military dimensions of the Arab-Israel dispute in the second half of the 20th century. It complements existing history modules and allows interested students to gain specialist historical knowledge about one of the most contentious and emotive issues in contemporary international politics.

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Communication Students will learn how to present their ideas both verbally and in writing and how to assert themselves to advantage. They will understand the importance of information and clear communication and how to exploit these. They will know how to use the many sources of information available and how to use the most appropriate form of communication to the best advantage. They will learn to be clear and direct in their 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. Seminars will be run in groups where oral discussion and presentations will form the main medium of teaching and the emphasis throughout the module will be on student participation and communication.
Improving own Learning and Performance The module aims to promote self-management but within a context of assistance from both the convenor and the fellow students alike. Students will be expected to improve their own learning and performance by undertaking their own research and to exercise their own initiative, including searching for sources, compiling reading lists, and deciding (under guidance) the direction of their essay and presentation topics. The need to conduct a seminar presentation and to meet an essay deadline will focus students' attention on the need to manage their time and opportunity resources well.
Information Technology Students will be expected to submit their work in word-processed format. Also, students will be encouraged to search for sources of information on the web, as well as seeking sources through electronic information sources (such as Web of Science and OCLC).
Personal Development and Career planning The discussions in particular will help to develop students' verbal and presentation skills. Learning about the process of planning an essay and a presentation, framing the parameters of the projects, honing and developing the projects and seeing through to completion will contribute towards their portfolio of transferable skills.
Problem solving Independent project work and problem solving will be one of the central goals of the module; the submission of an essay will require that the student develops independent research skills as well as problem solving skills. The need to research and prepare seminar presentations will also enable the student to develop independent project 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 estimate an answer to the problem; consider extreme cases; reason logically; construct theoretical models; consider similar cases; look for patterns; divide issues into smaller problems. A final examination will ensure that an assessment of the student's ability to work alone can be undertaken.
Research skills The submission of an essay will reflect the independent research skills of the student. The need to locate appropriate research resources and write up the results will also facilitate research skills. Research preparation for a seminar presentation will also enable the student to develop independent project skills. A final examination will ensure that an assessment of the student's ability to work alone can be undertaken.
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 - Ability to evaluate competing perspectives - Demonstrate subject specific research techniques - Apply a range of methodologies to complex political problems
Team work Seminars will consist in part of small-group discussion where students will be obliged to discuss as a group the core issues related to seminar topics. Such class room debates and discussions are a vital component of the module.


This module is at CQFW Level 6