CONTEMPORARY HISTORY

CONTEMPORARY HISTORY

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Code
55879
ACADEMIC YEAR
2020/2021
CREDITS
6 credits during the 1st year of 8740 Modern languages and cultures (L-11) GENOVA
SCIENTIFIC DISCIPLINARY SECTOR
M-STO/04
LANGUAGE
Italian
TEACHING LOCATION
GENOVA (Modern languages and cultures)
semester
1° Semester
sectioning
This unit is divided into 3 sections: A, B, C. This page refers to the section
Teaching materials

OVERVIEW

The classes address the main events and the leading transformations in world history in politics, economy, society, and culture during the 19th and 20th centuries. Specific attention is paid to the possible periodizations of contemporary history and to three diverse eras in the structure of the global system: the rise of the European primacy in the 19th century, the centrality of the United States in the 20th century and the coming of a post-American world at the dawn of the Third millennium.

AIMS AND CONTENT

LEARNING OUTCOMES

The classes are intended as an introduction to the history of the Nineteenth and Twentieth centuries with the purpose of offering students an overview of the main transformations in the fields of economy, politics, society, culture, and customs from the Industrial Revolution to the Twin Towers within a global perspective, focusing on a few highly remarkable processes in some European, American, Asian, and African areas.

AIMS AND LEARNING OUTCOMES

The classes aim at addressing the main events and the leading transformations in world history in the fields of politics, economy, society, and culture during the Nineteenth and Twentieth centuries from a comparative perspective. Specific attention will be paid to the possible periodizations of contemporary history, along with its turning points, from the Industrial Revolution to the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001, and to three diverse eras in the structure of the global system: the rise and consolidation of the European primacy in the Nineteenth century, the centrality of the United States in the Twentieth century and the coming of a post-American world at the dawn of the Third millennium. By the end of the classes the students will have the knowledge of the main events and the leading transformations in world history in the fields of politics, economy, society, and culture during the Nineteenth and Twentieth centuries from a comparative perspective. Moreover, they will be able to define the possible periodizations of contemporary history, along with its turning points, from the Industrial Revolution to the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001. They will also develop adequate skills to elaborate critical assessments and to make evaluations of their own about the most relevant issues and problems related to this era. Finally, they will acquire an appropriate vocabulary and the proper analytical tools to discuss and to examine such matters.

PREREQUISITES

A good knowledge of written and spoken Italian is necessary to pass the exam

For the Academic year 2020/2021 due to Covid 19 pandemic, it is necessary to have an electronic device (PC, tablet, smartphone) with quick connection available in order to connect to the platforms Tims and Aulaweb on which this course will be delivered.

Teaching methods

Course of 36 hours, equivalent to 6 CFU.

Course for the academic year 2021-2021 will be carried out as distance learning courses only and will be offered on the "TEAMS" and "AULAWEB" platforms. Both platforms are available to regularly enrolled students by entering www.cedia.unige.it website

Attendance is not compulsory but warmly recommended

SYLLABUS/CONTENT

From a European-centered to a post-American world. Conventional scholarly wisdom has it that contemporary history hinges on the Nineteenth and Twentieth centuries. Indian statesman and historian Kavalam Madhava Panikkar has contrasted the modern epoch, marked by European dominance over the world, to the contemporary era, characterized by the ascent of other-than-European societies, with India’s 1947 independence from the British rule as the turning point between these two periods. Sociologist Giovanni Arrighi has pointed to the Twentieth century as the age of U.S. hegemony within the capitalistic system as opposed to the Nineteenth century as the time of British primacy, a pre-eminence that undertook a decline in the last quarter of the century in the wake of the rise of both the United States and Germany as new economic powers. Such an interpretation fits the traditional vision of the Twentieth century as the American century, to quote publisher Henry Luce’s well-known definition. Following Washington’s success in the Cold War, in political analyst Charles Krauthammer’s opinion, the U.S. leadership in the world arena strengthened in the last decade of the century with the establishment of a ten-year-long unipolar moment, but it came to an end in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001 and the beginning of what journalist and author Fareed Zakaria has called a “post-American world”. Those just summarized are only some of the possible periodizations of contemporary history. After reviewing the most relevant ones, the classes intend to address the main events and the leading transformations in world history in the fields of politics, economy, society, and culture during the Nineteenth and Twentieth centuries from a comparative perspective, along the lines of the division of  the structure of the global system into three spans of time: the rise and consolidation of the European primacy in the Nineteenth century, the centrality of the United States in the Twentieth century, and the coming of a post-American world at the dawn of the Third millennium. The issues and topics discussed at classes will include, but will not be confined to, industrialization, the Congress of Vienna and the restoration of the ancient regime, the European revolutions, imperialism and colonialism, World War I, the Bolshevik revolution, the totalitarian regimes in the interwar years, World War II, the origins of the Cold War and the establishment of the Western bloc, peaceful coexistence and détente, the Chinese revolution, decolonization and the Non-Aligned Movement, the Middle East crises, the end of the cold war and the collapse of the Soviet Union, the unipolar moment, the process of European integration, the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001 and the post-American world.

RECOMMENDED READING/BIBLIOGRAPHY

For ATTENDING students:
students must study, in addition to the notes taken in class, the following book:

- Alberto M. Banti, L’età contemporanea. Dalla Grande Guerra a oggi, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 2009;


Students must also choose and study one of the following books:

- F. Anania, a.c., Consumi e mass media, Bologna, Il Mulino, 2013 (excluding the II chapter);

- V. Castronovo, L'Italia del miracolo economico, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 2010;
- F. Fasce, I Presidenti USA. Due secoli di storia, Roma, Carocci, 2008;

- F.Fasce, La musica nel tempo. Una storia dei Beatles, Torino, Einaudi, 2018;
- E. Gentile, Il fascismo in tre capitoli, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 2004;

- E. Scarpellini, La stoffa dell'Italia. Storia e cultura della moda dal 1945 a oggi, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 2017

 

For NON-attending students:
- P. Viola, Storia moderna e contemporanea, IV. Il Novecento, Torino, Einaudi, 2000


plus one of the following books at student's choice:

- F. Anania, a.c., Consumi e mass media, Bologna, Il Mulino, 2013 (excluding the II chapter);

- V. Castronovo, L'Italia del miracolo economico, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 2010;

- G. Di Febo, S. Julià, Il franchismo, Roma, Carocci, 2008;
- F. Fasce, I Presidenti USA. Due secoli di storia, Roma, Carocci, 2008;

- F.Fasce, La musica nel tempo. Una storia dei Beatles, Torino, Einaudi, 2018;
- E. Gentile, Il fascismo in tre capitoli, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 2004.

Foreign students can also study the general aspects  in a foreign language (English, French, etc.), only if agrreed with the teacher. However, a reading in Italian choosen among the above list is mandatory.

TEACHERS AND EXAM BOARD

Ricevimento: Due to Covid-19 pandemic, unless otherwise provided, students and undergraduates reception can only be held at a distance by using Skype on appointment agreed by email to the following address: maccariniroberto@libero.it

Exam Board

ROBERTO MACCARINI (President)

LARA PICCARDO

GUIDO LEVI

LESSONS

Teaching methods

Course of 36 hours, equivalent to 6 CFU.

Course for the academic year 2021-2021 will be carried out as distance learning courses only and will be offered on the "TEAMS" and "AULAWEB" platforms. Both platforms are available to regularly enrolled students by entering www.cedia.unige.it website

Attendance is not compulsory but warmly recommended

LESSONS START

Wednesday, September 30th, 2020; 2.00 p.m.

EXAMS

Exam description

Oral exam either at the end of the course  and at all the scheduled dates. 

Due to Covid 19 pandemic, exams will be carried out as distance learning courses only by connecting to the Teams platform.

Registration procedures for exams through University website are unchanged .

Assessment methods

The written test – which will last no longer than two hours – will comprise twelve open-ended questions, three requiring a long answer (20-28 lines) and nine necessitating a short one (1-3 lines). The length of each oral exam will be inversely proportional to the student’s knowledge. The questions – for both the written test and the oral exam – will aim at assessing students’ familiarity with the possible periodizations of contemporary history as well as the knowledge and understanding of the leading transformations in world history in the fields of politics, economy, society, and culture during the Nineteenth and Twentieth centuries. Clarity in expressing one’s ideas and arguments will be a further element of evaluation. The final grade will result from the combination of the assessment of all these factors. Students are advised not to prepare the exam by learning names and dates by heart.

Exam schedule

Date Time Location Type Notes
08/09/2021 10:00 GENOVA Orale
24/09/2021 10:00 GENOVA Orale