Skip to main content

Unit information: Medieval and Post Medieval Landscapes (Supervised Independent Study C) in 2015/16

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Medieval and Post Medieval Landscapes (Supervised Independent Study C)
Unit code ARCHM0073
Credit points 20
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Professor. Mark Horton
Open unit status Not open




School/department Department of Anthropology and Archaeology
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

This unit examines the evidence for landscape use in the Medieval and Post Medieval periods beyond the level of settlement and food production. The approach will be thematic and will examine topics such as the religious constitution of landscape, such as the early Medieval church to the industrial exploitation of the Post Medieval period. It will explore systems of defence, communications, contested landscapes, together with landscapes of pleasure and recreation. The landscape signatures of these practices and their interpretations will be explored through case studies.


  • to explore the varied character of past human appropriation and construction of landscape beyond the level of settlement and food production;
  • to introduce students to the range of archaeological landscape traces relating to ceremonial and ritual practices, industry, defence, communications and recreation from the early Medieval period to the early modern period.
  • to engage critically with thematic, interpretive, accounts of non-settlement and non-subsistence practices at a landscape level.

Intended Learning Outcomes

At the end of the unit, a successful student will be able to:

  • Locate sources of archaeological data, from fieldwork to archives and library and internet resources;
  • Evaluate archaeological data, its quality and significance;
  • Use data to test hypotheses, generated from a broad understanding of the discipline and current research debates;
  • Deliver an academically sound and professional research paper.

Teaching Information

Lectures, fieldtrips and site visits (20 contact hours minimum). The times and duration of each session will be determined at the beginning of the teaching block in consideration of the number of students and their specific interests. Approximately half of the hours are fieldtrips or site visits.

Assessment Information

The unit will be assessed by a submission (or submissions) to be agreed in advance with the Unit Director and topic tutor, and will be related to the chosen pathway or programme. The submission(s) will be equivalent in academic scope and weight to an essay of 5000 words. The topic and nature of the submission(s) will be agreed in advance of submission with the Unit Director or topic tutor, as appropriate.

Reading and References

  • Hill, P. & Wileman, J. 2002. Landscapes of War. Stroud: Tempus.
  • Rackam, O. 1986. The History of the Countryside. London: Dent.
  • Taylor, C. 1998. The Parks and Gardens of Britain. Edinburgh: EUP
  • Wade Martins, S. 2004. Farmers, Landlords and Landscapes: Rural Britain, 1720 to 1870. Windgather.
  • Williamson, T. 2003. Shaping Medieval Landscapes. Windgather.