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Unit information: Race in 2021/22

Unit name Race
Unit code HIST30117
Credit points 20
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Dr. Sam Hitchmough
Open unit status Not open




School/department Department of History (Historical Studies)
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

What makes people different? Do collective identities represent biological realities? What is culture? Is ethnicity merely a cipher for race? How does race interact with the categories of gender and class? This unit examines the historical development of Western ideas of race, and how racialised identities are constructed and maintained, through a series of thematic case-studies that seek to reveal some of the myriad dynamics underpinning notions of race.

These will include discussions through various lenses such as intersectionality, identity formation, activism and protest, violence, national narratives (of memory and identity), the media and popular cultural imagination.

The seminar topics will promote reflection on the relationships between these concepts, and the ways in which difference has become a fundamental factor in the understanding of humanity.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Successful students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of a range of theories and concepts relevant to the history of race, culture and difference across a temporal and geographic range

2. Apply an understanding of critical and theoretical reading to specific issues articulated in relevant primary and secondary sources

3. Identify and present pertinent evidence to develop a cogent argument;

4. Present complex historical ideas in oral and written formats to a standard appropriate for level H/6.

Teaching Information

Classes will involve a combination of long- and short-form lectures, class discussion, investigative activities, and practical activities. Students will be expected to engage with readings and participate on a weekly basis. This will be further supported with drop-in sessions and self-directed exercises with tutor and peer feedback.

Assessment Information

1 x 2500-word Essay (50%), ILOs 1-4  1 x Timed Assessment (50%), ILOs 1-4  1 x Formative Presentation, ILOs 1-4 


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. HIST30117).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.