Module Catalogue 2024/25

GEO3162 : The Politics of Difference and Identity

GEO3162 : The Politics of Difference and Identity

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Raksha Pande
  • Lecturer: Dr Josep Almudever Chanza
  • Owning School: Geography, Politics & Sociology
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
European Credit Transfer System

Modules you must have done previously to study this module

Code Title
GEO2047Political Geography
GEO2110Social Geographies
Pre Requisite Comment

Students should have taken GEO2110 Social Geographies and/or GEO2047 Political geographies in Stage 2 ; this module builds on topics explored there. If you have not taken these modules then other pre-requisites will also be considered with prior approval from the module leader. Please email them with your expression of interest.


Modules you need to take at the same time

Co Requisite Comment



Who am I? How do I know who I am? How can identity be mobilized for just and fair representation?

These are the guiding questions of this module which aims to provide a conceptually oriented and advanced discussion of the various ways in which identity and difference might be theorized and critiqued.
Empirically, the module will examine three specific axes of difference (chosen from a range of identity-categories such as religion, class, gender, sexuality, age, ability) each year to explore how they are implicated in the creation of social and spatial inequalities and wider processes of social change.
Conceptually, the lectures and workshops will focus on extant theoretical perspectives, which might include feminist, queer, post-structural, postcolonial, posthuman or historical-materialist approaches. We will pay special attention to exploring how subjectivity is co-constituted through emotion, embodiment, and performativity.

Methodologically, the module will employ multi-modal research and teaching methods, that is, we will use creative and artistic expressions such as poetry, music videos, films, TV series, photography, fiction and graphic novels as the main ways of understanding and exploring experiences of identity and difference.

The module will be delivered in-person with lectures recorded via ReCap.

Outline Of Syllabus

GEO3162 Theory, Identity and Politics is a semester-long module, allowing for intensive study of the concepts of identity and difference through weekly sessions. Building on themes introduced in GEO2110 Social Geographies, this course aims to give students an advanced understanding of these concepts by focussing on the key axes of difference such as gender, sexuality, class and religion.

Learning Outcomes

Intended Knowledge Outcomes

By the end of the module students will:

1.       Be able to understand the key theoretical tenets behind the concepts of identity and difference.
2.       Be able to critically evaluate the position of these concepts in relation to broader social and political contexts.
3.       Be able to apply identity theories to understand how the various axes of difference (for example class, religion, sexuality, and gender) are co-constituted in the making of the self.
4.       Be able to explore the subjective nature of identity politics and its stakes in social justice.
6.       Be able to critically evaluate the epistemology of identity in relation to how knowledge is produced and communicated through the use of creative research methods.

Intended Skill Outcomes

By the end of the module students will have developed:

1.       The ability to summarise, assess and critically evaluate different theories of identity and difference.
2.       The ability to critically interpret and reflect on theories of identity in relation to their personal and collective biographies.
3.       The ability to conceive, present and defend evidence-based arguments.
4.       The ability to work collaboratively with their colleagues.
5.       The ability to creatively synthesize different types of textual, performance and visual media sources and methodologies in their work.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture82:0016:00Lectures will provide an in-depth discussion of key theoretical and empirical approaches to identity and difference.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops42:008:00Creative research-methods workshops.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops24:008:00Assessment workshops.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery12:002:00Drop-in surgery for queries related to group presentation.
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study1166:00166:00Students will use this time to read about the various lecture topics by referring to the reading lists provided and preparing for assessments.
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The module teaching will be delivered through a mixture of 2hr lectures and workshops. The lectures will provide students with ‘a roadmap’ to navigate the existing literatures on identity and differences and with an in-depth discussion of key theories of gender, sexuality, class, and religious identity.

The workshops will put the theories and concepts learnt during the lectures into action by introducing students to art-based creative methods and guiding them into producing their own creative outputs.

Reading Lists

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Oral Presentation1M50Group presentation of creative portfolios developed in the preceding workshops.
Essay1M50This is a 2000 words critical review essay on two pieces (1000 words each) of literature film, performance, exhibition and/or text.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Assessment I
This is a group presentation that will showcase the three creative outputs. Examples of these include a collage, a poster, a photo essay, and/or a fashion book/zine. These portfolios will be created during the lecturer-led creative workshops.

This assessment is worth 50% of the module mark, it will be split in two – 35% for the group presentation and 15% for the production of the three elements (worth 5% each) of the creative portfolios. The latter will be assessed on a pass/fail basis where a full 5% marks each will be awarded for participation in the workshops and producing the output and 0% for non-participation/submission.

Assessment II
This is a 2000 word critical review essay on two ‘identity and difference‘ themed pieces (1000 word each) of either literature film, performance, exhibition and/or text. The review pieces will be chosen by students with guidance and/or suggestions from module lecturers.

The two assessments rationales directly map onto module learning and skills outcomes.
More specifically, Assessment I will assess the students' ability to visually present their portfolios by synthesizing them into a 15-minute talk about ‘Identity and its Discontents’. The presentation will also assess their ability to work collaboratively and to show their knowledge of creative research methods and outputs. Assessment II will assess their ability to critically apply identity theories to current contexts and evaluate the epistemology of identity in relation to how knowledge is produced and communicated using creative methods.


Past Exam Papers

General Notes


Welcome to Newcastle University Module Catalogue

This is where you will be able to find all key information about modules on your programme of study. It will help you make an informed decision on the options available to you within your programme.

You may have some queries about the modules available to you. Your school office will be able to signpost you to someone who will support you with any queries.


The information contained within the Module Catalogue relates to the 2024 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 2025/26 entry will be published here in early-April 2025. Queries about information in the Module Catalogue should in the first instance be addressed to your School Office.