Undergraduate Module Descriptor

POL3214: Disrupting Western Hegemony: Insurgency and Counterinsurgency Post-WWII

This module descriptor refers to the 2022/3 academic year.


NQF Level 6
Credits 15 ECTS Value 7.5
Term(s) and duration

This module ran during term 1 (11 weeks)

Academic staff

Dr Sergio Catignani (Convenor)





Available via distance learning


This module will provide you with a strong foundation in the conceptual, historical, strategic, operational, organisational and ethical issues associated with “counterinsurgency warfare”. Whilst looking at in-depth historical and more recent case studies of counterinsurgencies , this module will enable you to problematise and assess from a critical security perspective the extent to which counterinsurgencies have been used by Western powers and their allies to maintain their hegemonic influence and power around the globe, and, in the Global South in particular.

This module will  enable you to explore the evolutionary phases of insurgency and counterinsurgency from the Maoist version of the “people’s war” in China to the development of global jihad. The module will particularly focus on how Western and Western-backed foreign states have often been employed military force to re-establish or maintain racialised and neo-colonial practices of hegemonic order within the societies in which counterinsurgencies have been carried out.

No pre-requisite or co-requisite modules are required in order to register for this module. However, it would useful for you to have a basic knowledge of twentieth century conflict and diplomatic history, as this will comprise some of the case study subject matter and background information that will be discussed in the module’s seminars. However, such knowledge is not vital as background readings will be provided for all of the cases examined. In any case, this module is suitable for both specialist and non-specialist students who are interested in studying counterinsurgency from an interdisciplinary and critical security perspective, thus, rendering it suitable for interdisciplinary pathways.

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