BADR 304/3.0 - British Studies I

Course Instructor: Dr Peter Lowe -

In Summary:

This course examines the nature of identity. Through the study of 'Britishness' and what it means to be British, students will explore how national identities are formed.

UY Course Fall Course Summer Course

Course Highlights: Alert Box

  • A critical overview of British history, culture and politics.

  • A truly interdisciplinary course that examines Britain through the study of history, politics, current affairs, literature, art and popular culture.

  • Learn to think critically about your own national identities.

  • Explore subject matter in a way that emphasises group discussions and access to primary sources.

Course Information:

An interdisciplinary introduction to contemporary British life and culture, focusing on some of the key events, issues, and narratives that continue to shape British national identity. The course usually combines British art history, history, literature, and popular culture.

Ranging from sport to Brexit, and from the Royal Family to romantic comedies, IDIS304 is an interdisciplinary course that offers a critical overview of British history, culture and politics. At the same time as it invites students to reflect on the country in which they are temporarily living, it encourages them to think how their own feelings of national identity are formed by personal experience and cultural traditions.

Different theories on identity-making will frame the course, while its material will be drawn from history, politics, current affairs, literature, art and popular culture. Particular effort is made to ensure that the course requirements are accessible to those who don’t have background in one or more of the course’s disciplines

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the course students will have knowledge of: 

  • British modern history, culture, politics and ideologies
  • All contemporary debates on the future of 21st century Britain 
  • What makes a nation, and how national identities are formed and constantly re-imagined

Students will also have developed their skills in: 

  • thinking critically about their own identities
  • engaging critically with all different types of primary sources 
  • comparative analysis across national cultures
  • imaginative approaches to presenting their research findings  

Experiential and Active Learning Opportunities:

Potential embedded experiential and active learning opportunities for this course include visits to stereotypical English villages and ‘picture postcard’ locations in London or in the area around our own castle. We may also visit exhibitions, public talks, or theatrical productions in London that encourage us to reflect on what Britain is, what it might be, and what the people that live in it consider to be their version of ‘home’

Prerequisites and Exclusions:

Prerequisite: Level 2 standing, or permission of the instructor.

Course applicable to the following Majors/Medials/Minors:

ENGL (substitute) / HIST (substitute) / POLS (substitution) / Con-Ed Teaching Subject (History)


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