Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Fighting the Five Giants: Welfare & Society in Modern Britai
Academic Year
Intended for use in future years
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 18 x 1 hour
Seminars / Tutorials 10 seminars x 50 minutes


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Semester Assessment - 2 x 2,500 word essays  50%
Semester Exam 3 Hours   Semester Examination- 3hr closed exam  50%
Supplementary Assessment Supplementary Assessment  submit any missing or failed written work  50%
Supplementary Exam 3 Hours   Supplementary Examinations - 3hr closed exam  50%

Brief description

This course will survey the history of the welfare state in early twentieth century Britain and will consider efforts to eradicate the five `giant evils? of Want, Ignorance, Disease, Squalor and Idleness. It will focus on these developments in their social, economic, political and demographic contexts. The extension of central government into various aspects of people'r lives was one of the central features of the twentieth century and the significance of social policies on the everyday lives of ordinary people will be considered. The extent to which transformations in standards of living can be attributed to government policies and actions will be evaluated but the course will also consider the costs of such large-scale government intervention. An important aspect of the course will be the examination of primary sources including official papers, social surveys and social policy tracts.


This module is at CQFW Level 6