Study Abroad and Exchanges



POL3099 : Power, Space & Protest in the Middle East (Inactive)

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


• To introduce students to the study of space and protest in the Middle East.
• To develop an understanding of social movements and different forms of collective action in the Middle East.
• To enable students to advance their critical analytical skills of contemporary scholarship on the Middle East.
• Provide students with an opportunity to develop their independent research skills.

Outline Of Syllabus

Following the uprisings of 2011, a new era of political protest and participation was heralded in the Middle East. Recent events in the region, however, have demonstrated the resilience of authoritarian regimes and a resurgence of violent forms of repression. This module aims to explore the relationship between political mobilisation and repression in more detail. How do people mobilise? What forms of collective action can be observed? What are the opportunities and constraints facing activists? What tactics are used to advance political claims? How do policing strategies shape dynamics of contention? Do street protests work? Drawing on a range of contemporary case studies from around the region, it aims to answer these questions and explore the usefulness of key concepts within social movement theory and the study of contentious politics more generally in explaining contemporary patterns as well as future trends in political mobilisation and change in the Middle East.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture241:0024:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching101:0010:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery21:002:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study1164:00164:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures are designed to give students an overview of a number of relevant themes, concepts and issues related to a critical understanding of power, security and protest in the Middle East. Following an introductory lecture, the remaining lectures are divided into two parts: Part One: Issues of Governance (weeks 2-6 inclusive) and Part Two: Street Politics in Action (weeks 7-11). The final week provides an opportunity to review the previous weeks' learning. In order to gain a deeper understanding of the themes discussed, it is essential that students read widely from the supporting literature in advance of each lecture.

Seminars are designed to provide students with an opportunity to critically engage with issues and concepts relating to Power, Security and Protest in the Middle East in smaller group settings and to improve and advance their research, argumentation, analytical and presentation skills. Attendance at seminars is mandatory. During Weeks 2-6 (inclusive), seminars are based upon the discussion of set readings. Students are assigned to reading groups during Week 1 and a number of discussion topics are assigned to groups in advance of each seminar. During Weeks 7-11 (inclusive), seminars are based upon student-led group presentations focusing on a particular aspect of Street Politics in Action in one of five different Middle Eastern contexts (Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Turkey and Israel). Students are assigned to the 5 country-based working groups according to their own preference and on a first-come, first-served basis. The role of the seminar leader throughout is to facilitate and guide group discussion, not to lead discussion or lecture.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2M452000 words
Prof skill assessmnt2M10Seminar Participation (assessed) - Seminars are arranged to ensure an element of participation from each student
Essay2M452000 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The exam will test students for their broad knowledge of the topics within the module. The 2000 word essay will provide an opportunity for students to explore one of the topics in greater depth. It will assess the student’s ability to place and synthesize the material gained from lectures and seminars in appropriate contexts and their ability to critically and succinctly evaluate the ideas, concepts and theories introduced in lectures and explored in seminars. In addition the essay will also assess the capacity and initiative of students to undertake independent study of published and electronic materials. These assessments act in tandem so as to test students on both their broad and specific understanding of the module content.

Reading Lists