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Unit information: Gender in the Modern World in 2022/23

Please note: It is possible that the information shown for future academic years may change due to developments in the relevant academic field. Optional unit availability varies depending on both staffing, student choice and timetabling constraints.

Unit name Gender in the Modern World
Unit code HIST10069
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Dr. Jones
Open unit status Not open
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School/department Department of History (Historical Studies)
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Unit Information

Gender history has been one of the most important facets of historical scholarship over the last 50 years. Not only has gender become something for historians to study, it has also become a key methodology: a lens through which historians approach, ask questions of, and attempt to make sense of the past. Though hugely influenced by feminist historical approaches, it is not, as some assume, merely an attempt to ‘reclaim’ or ‘rediscover’ the voices and experiences of historical women –as Joan Scott argued, it should instead be seen as a ‘useful category of analysis’ that can offer important perspectives and challenges in almost every aspect of historical scholarship.

This unit will offer an introduction to some of the key themes of modern gender history, exploring a range of topics in different geographical and chronological contexts. Engaging with a diverse variety of written and visual sources, it will investigate some of the different ways gender has been made, shaped, regulated, resisted, and experienced in the modern world. Importantly, it will also begin to familiarise students with some of the theoretical questions that have influenced modern gender history, including critical introductions to ideas about masculinity and femininity; of feminism and ideas about gender equality; about the intersection of gender with class, race, and sexuality; as well as trans histories and how we might think of gender beyond the binary.

This unit therefore aims to:

  • introduce students to the key themes, concepts, and approaches in modern gender history.
  • provide a critical overview of the existing scholarship in the field.

Your learning on this unit

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Identify and analyse key themes in the history of gender in various contexts.
  2. Discuss and evaluate the historiographical debates that surround the topic.
  3. Interpret primary sources and select pertinent evidence in order to illustrate specific and more general historical points.
  4. Present their research and judgements in written forms and styles appropriate to the discipline and to level C.

How you will learn

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.

How you will be assessed

Tasks which help you learn and prepare you for summative tasks (formative):

There are no formative assessments in this unit.

Tasks which count towards your unit mark (summative):

One 2500-word essay (50%) [ILOs 1-4]

2-hour Unseen Examination (50%) [ILOs 1-4].

When assessment does not go to plan:

If you are not able to take or pass a summative assessment, you will have another opportunity during the autumn reassessment period. The assessment format will remain the same as that originally planned. If unforeseen circumstances mean that the examination cannot proceed as planned for any reason, the assessment paper will be released to students and they will be able to complete it according to the University’s rules on Timed Assessments.


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. HIST10069).

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.