The course explores the concept and form of empire through an engagement with recent European history and various normative theories regarding the effects, operations and functioning of empire. This course is broken up into three sections. The first takes a narrative historical perspective on European colonial history, and explores different classical theories of imperialism. The second explores postcolonial theory as a method of analysing European colonial history and culture and examines the different kinds of analytical tools that might be applied to the study of empire. In the final section of the course, we look at contemporary debates around the US as a figure of empire, Globalisation as a medium of empire in the work of Hardt and Negri and we examine what might be at stake in these debates, (why empire, why now?). Finally, we explore what empire as a political form or category of analysis contributes to our understanding of the world.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
By the end of this course students should have achieved the following:
- Assess the extent to which empire as a category of analysis is adequate to describing contemporary global politics and North/South relations;
- Compare and assess different theoretical and normative perspectives on empire;
- Appreciate the potential contribution of postcolonial theory to political theory generally and a normative understanding of empire;
- Have developed some capacity to apply theoretical analysis to empirical/historical/cultural sources.
2500 word research essay: 50%
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The course will be delivered through two hours of lectures and one hour of face-to-face tutorials a week.
Requisite and Incompatibility
Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.
If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Students continuing in their current program of study will have their tuition fees indexed annually from the year in which you commenced your program. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.
- Student Contribution Band:
- Unit value:
- 6 units
If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees. Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.
- Domestic fee paying students
- International fee paying students