University of Sussex Business School

Int Rels of the Modern Middle East (L2065A)

International Relations of the Modern Middle East

Module L2065A

Module details for 2019/20.

30 credits

FHEQ Level 6

Module Outline

Dr Kamran Matin
The Middle East remains at the centre-stage of international politics and media. Yet its specificities and complexities continue to challenge politicians and academics alike. This module explores the explanatory potentials of a three-dimensional international, social and historical approach to modern political history of the Middle East. It consists of three major parts.

First, it critically surveys the traditional theoretical approaches to the analysis of Middle East politics. Second, it delineates the broader historical contours of the contemporary politics of the region by retracing the socio-international context and outcomes of the formation of 'modern' Middle Eastern states. Thirdly, and drawing on the second part, it provides in-depth analysis of three major contemporary political developments in the region, namely The Iranian Revolution, the Arab-Israeli conflict and Iraq War. The module concludes by a brief evaluation of the broader implications of an international-historical approach to the study of the Middle East for theory and practice of international relations.

All year 3 IR modules are assessed by a 70% 3.5K essay, 20% 1k Essay, 10% 20 minute Group presentation. We meet each week for a three hour seminar combining mini-lectures, group work, analytical exercises and open discussion.

Module learning outcomes

Develop a systematic and critical understanding of the theoretical and conceptual issues involved in the study of the modern politics and history of the Middle East.

Develop a detailed conceptual understanding of the historical, political and cultural forces shaping the Middle East as it relates to broader international trends.

Effectively synthesise and communicate the empirical and theoretical uncertainties, ambiguities and limits that are framed by modern Middle Eastern politics.

Coursework components. Weighted as shown below.
Group PresentationT1 Week 11 (30 minutes)33.33%
EssayT1 Week 6 66.67%
Essay (3500 words)Semester 1 Assessment Week 1 Thu 16:0070.00%

Submission deadlines may vary for different types of assignment/groups of students.


Coursework components (if listed) total 100% of the overall coursework weighting value.

TermMethodDurationWeek pattern
Autumn SemesterSeminar3 hours11111111111

How to read the week pattern

The numbers indicate the weeks of the term and how many events take place each week.

Dr Melanie Richter-Montpetit

Assess convenor

Dr Kamran Matin

Assess convenor, Convenor

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