Undergraduate Module Descriptor

POC3020: The Politics of War

This module descriptor refers to the 2017/8 academic year.

Please note that this module is only delivered on the Penryn Campus.

Module Content

Syllabus Plan

The module is taught through weekly 2 hour seminars and includes several film screenings with discussion.


Whilst the module’s precise content may vary from year to year, it is envisaged that the syllabus will cover some or all of the following topics::


Introduction: Why study war?

War, embodiment and experience

War, culture and representation

Collective memory, ritual and politics

Militarism and big business


Industrialised warfare, masculinity and the body in the First World War

Remembrance Day and memorials after the First World War in Britain

FILM SCREENING: Saving Private Ryan

Second World War in American Film


Contested memories of the Second World War in Germany: Dresden

Bearing Witness and Visual Culture after the Holocaust

War and resistance in the Nuclear Age

The Vietnam War remembered

Guest lecture Dr David Jackson, former Royal Marine

British nationalism and the Falklands War


9/11, Ground Zero and the cultural history of the War on Terror


Helmetcams and media coverage of the war in Afghanistan


Precarious Bodies in War

Postmodern mourning and twenty first century sacrifice

Soldier testimony and anti-war resistance

Wounded veterans, rehabilitation and contemporary injury politics

Critical Reflection and Guidance for Assessment  

Learning and Teaching

This table provides an overview of how your hours of study for this module are allocated:

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

...and this table provides a more detailed breakdown of the hours allocated to various study activities:

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled learning and teaching activities4422 weekly seminars (2 hours each)
Independent Guided Study256Independent study: reading and preparing for seminars (around 5 hours per seminar); researching, planning and producing assessments (approximately 96 hours) and approximately 50 hours revising for, and undertaking, the oral examination.

Online Resources

This module has online resources available via ELE (the Exeter Learning Environment).