Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE The European Union: Historical Considerations

LEVEL 02 - Years 2, 3 in Modular Undergraduate Course



DESCRIPTION Over the course of 14 two-hours sessions, students will be given a coherent overview of the continuities and changes in Europe since 1945, set within a long-term perspective within which contemporary developments need to be understood. The study-unit will commence with an introductory lecture which will map out the goals of this study-unit. Today, we are living in an age where the 'European dream' of a united continent is seriously threatened by economic problems and a wide-spread feeling of 'Europe' having let down its citizens. By contrast, the seeds of this dream were sown in the aftermath of the devastation of the Second World War, when peace and prosperity were much desired. While tracing the movement of Europe from a devastated and divided continent in 1945 to the current situation, the study-unit will also deal with such issues as the utility and challenges of the 'past' for present notions of European unity and identity. There will also be space to consider career prospects within EU institutions and ways to go about these. The final lecture will tie-up the study-unit and offer insights into the wholeness and the particularities of the subjects covered.

Study-unit Aims

• To offer students insights into the development of the European Union, with reference to processes and events both in Western and Eastern Europe, as well as the Mediterranean;
• To make students aware of both successes and failures in the history of European integration;
• To alert students about varying interpretations of the past, including varying narratives about European history in general, and European integration in particular.

Learning Outcomes

1. Knowledge & Understanding:
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

• highlight and analyze key themes in the history of the European Union;
• describe developments in the history of European integration from a variety of angles;
• list the key figures in the integration process and discuss their significance;
• explain how the key institutions of the European Union originated and developed.

2. Skills:
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

• read critically and selectively and make sense of a range of secondary sources;
• navigate with confidence through online resources and understand how to distinguish between generic web sites and serious academic tools;
• write an essay with a clear structure and logical presentation of arguments;
• demonstrate an ability to internalize and interpret knowledge, not just memorise and mechanically reproduce lecture notes.

All of these skills are transferable and will prove useful to students in a variety of fields and career venues.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings

• Martin J. Dedman, The Origins and Development of the European Union 1945-2008, (London and New York: Routledge, 2010, 2nd edn.)
• Brent F. Nelsen and Alexander Stubb (eds.), The European Union: Readings on the theory and practice of integration, (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2003, 3rd edn.)
• Michael O'Neill, The politics of European integration, (London and New York: Routledge, 1996).
Warwick Armstrong and James Anderson (eds.), Geopolitics of European Union enlargement: The fortress empire, (London and New York: Routledge, 2007).
• Ann Katherine Isaacs, Ewald Hiebl and Luisa Trindade (eds.), Perspectives on European integration and European Union History: A CliohWorld Reader, (Pisa: Pisa University Press, 2011) [Available to download for free]
• Guðmundur Hálfdanarson and Hatice Sofu (eds.), Developing EU-Turkey dialogue: A CliohWorld Reader, (Pisa: Pisa University Press, 2011) [Available to download for free]
Henry Frendo (ed.), The European Mind: Narrative and Identity, (Malta: Malta University Press, 2010).
• Timothy Bainbridge, The Penguin Companion to the European Union, (London, 2003).

Online Resources Europe’s digital library, museum and archive. ('Western Europe since 1945' / 'Eastern Europe since 1945')

During the course of the lectures, students will be advised about, and provided with material for further reading.

ADDITIONAL NOTES This study-unit is offered only to History/European and Global History students.

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture and Seminar

Assessment Component/s Resit Availability Weighting
Assignment Yes 50%
Assignment Yes 50%

LECTURER/S Emanuel Buttigieg

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2020/1. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.