Module Catalogue 2016/17

HIS2113 : Italian Unification: Nation, Religions, Revolution, 1796-1871 (Inactive)

  • Inactive for Year: 2016/17
  • Module Leader(s): Mr Federico Casari
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
Pre Requisites
Pre Requisite Comment


Co Requisites
Co Requisite Comment



The aim of the module is to study the experience and the impact of revolutionary and counter-revolutionary change in XIX century Italy. It starts with the disruptions caused by the French Revolution and the Napoleonic reforms, and ends with the formation of the Italian state.
The lectures will introduce the events, personalities and symbols of the struggle for unification; they will focus on the unification and its aftermath: the southern question, the relationship between State and Church, banditry, emigration and the resistance to the new state; and they will examine the representations of the Risorgimento: the heroic narratives and cults of personality, the birth of a civil religion, and its impact on the celebration of the nation in the liberal age.

The aims of the module are:
•To acquire a sound general knowledge of events, causes and consequences of the Italian Risorgimento.
•To develop understanding of the links between political, cultural and social issues in the history of the Italian unification.
•To become familiar with contemporary debates and recent historiography.
•To develop the capacity for independent study.

Outline Of Syllabus

Outline syllabus, intended as a guide only; week-by-week topics may be slightly different to the following.
1. Introduction: the historical roots of united Italy
2. The legacy of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic era
3. Italy in the ‘second restoration’
4. Before and after 1848: a geography of revolt
5. Italian nationalism and the Risorgimento (Mazzini, Cattaneo, Pisacane)
6. Cavour and the wars of national unification
7. Garibaldi and the Sicilian expedition
8. Rome capital: the new Italian state and the church
9. Contesting the nation: banditry and emigration
10. ‘Making Italians’: nation building after unification
11. Conclusion and essay revision

Learning Outcomes

Intended Knowledge Outcomes

Students will acquire a knowledge and understanding of the political, military, cultural and social history of the Italian unification. The module is intended to enable students to think critically about interpretations of the Risorgimento, about the problems of the new state, and about the public use of its memory after 1870, and to learn how to compare and utilise secondary sources.

Intended Skill Outcomes

Students will develop research skills and the ability to be able to identify and evaluate the usefulness of a range of secondary sources, comment on their perspective, content and significance, and be able to apply them appropriately in the final written examination. The module will also foster the development of a capacity for independent study and critical judgement and of the ability to respond promptly, cogently and clearly to new and unexpected questions arising from this study.

Graduate Skills Framework

Graduate Skills Framework Applicable: Yes
  • Cognitive/Intellectual Skills
    • Critical Thinking : Assessed
    • Active Learning : Present
    • Literacy : Assessed
    • Information Literacy
      • Source Materials : Assessed
      • Synthesise And Present Materials : Assessed
  • Self Management
    • Self Awareness And Reflection : Present
    • Planning and Organisation
      • Goal Setting And Action Planning : Assessed
      • Decision Making : Present
    • Personal Enterprise
      • Innovation And Creativity : Assessed
      • Initiative : Assessed
      • Independence : Present
      • Problem Solving : Assessed
      • Adaptability : Present
  • Interaction
    • Communication
      • Oral : Present
      • Interpersonal : Present
      • Written Other : Assessed
    • Team Working
      • Collaboration : Present
      • Relationship Building : Present
      • Negotiation : Present

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture121:0012:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion661:0066:0040% of guided independent study
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading661:0066:0040% of guided independent study
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching41:004:00Tutorials
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching102:0020:00Seminars
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study321:0032:0020% of guided independent study
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures impart core knowledge and an outline of knowledge that students are expected to acquire. They also stimulate development of listening and note-taking skills.
Seminars provide students with an opportunity to participate in discussion and thus to improve their oral communication skills.

Reading Lists

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination1351A60unseen
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay1M402000 words (including footnotes but excluding bibliography)
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Submitted work tests intended knowledge and skills outcomes and develops key skills in research, reading and writing. Work submitted during the delivery of the module forms a means of determining student progress. The exam tests acquisition of a clear general knowledge of the subject plus the ability to think and analyse a problem quickly, to select from and to apply both the general knowledge and detailed knowledge of aspects of the subject to new questions, problem-solving skills, adaptability, the ability to work unaided, and to write clearly and concisely.

ERASMUS students at Newcastle One 2,000 word essay to be handed in by 12.00 p.m. of the Friday of the first week of the assessment period. This will replace all work required of domestic students. It remains the case that, if an ERASMUS student specifically requests that s/he be permitted to do the same assessments as the domestic students, that option remains open to them. No variation of the deadlines will be allowed except on production of medical or equivalent evidence


Past Exam Papers

General Notes

Original Handbook text:

Disclaimer: The information contained within the Module Catalogue relates to the 2016/17 academic year. In accordance with University Terms and Conditions, the University makes all reasonable efforts to deliver the modules as described. Modules may be amended on an annual basis to take account of changing staff expertise, developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, and student feedback. Module information for the 2017/18 entry will be published here in early-April 2017. Queries about information in the Module Catalogue should in the first instance be addressed to your School Office.