History Short Period: The Middle East and North Africa since 1908 (V4122)

15 credits, Level 5

Autumn teaching

In this module you’ll encounter the twentieth-century history of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), examining this tumultuous period of history through the eyes of the people who lived through it.

You will study the major political upheavals of the twentieth century, understanding local people as agents in their own history.

The political and social struggles of the Arabic-speaking world take centre stage as we examine how powerful global ideologies and structures such as nationalism, imperialism and the Cold War, were negotiated and experienced by local actors in the MENA region.

Topics include:

  • the late Ottoman Empire
  • the First World War
  • anti-colonial struggles of the interwar years
  • the politics of gender
  • religious movements
  • the formation of postcolonial states, cinema, music and the digital revolution.

The connecting thread through all of these topics is the struggle for participation and representation in the public sphere – a struggle that continues in today’s MENA region.


50%: Lecture
50%: Seminar


100%: Written assessment (Essay)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 150 hours of work. This breaks down into about 22 hours of contact time and about 128 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2022/23. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to COVID-19, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let our applicants know of material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.


This module is offered on the following courses: