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Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Life In Medieval Towns: Sex,Class & Race
Module Code HY341
School 68
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Anne Booker
Semester 2: Anne Booker
Autumn: Anne Booker
Module TeachersGrania Shanahan
Anne Booker
NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 10
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None

The major towns and cities of colonial Ireland were centres of wealth, strategic importance, and population. Their governing authorities created a great many documents that can tell us about how the people of these towns dealt with the problems of urban life and attempted to control the mixed and changeable populations of urban centres. This course will draw on these documents to examine life in medieval Irish towns, discussing their evolution, their economy and how they were governed. It will then build on this understanding to look at Irish urban populations using three important lenses of historical analysis– class, gender and race. The course will ask students to contend these with these contested analytical categories and encourage them to think critically about the terms we use – ‘ethnicity’ and ‘race’, ‘sex’ and ‘gender’, ‘class’ and ‘status’. To do so, they will engage with the relevant historiography of Irish and European towns in the later middle ages but also with key primary texts including the records of urban administrations across the colony (all either English originals or available in translation) as well as the records of the colonial administration in Dublin. Students will use some of these records to design, research and write their own independent research projects (dissertations).

Learning Outcomes

1. Identify key events and developments in Irish medieval urban history
2. Engage with and interrogate the arguments of historians of medieval Ireland
3. Provide informed analysis of primary sources from Irish medieval towns
4. Construct a clear argument well-supported with historical evidence
5. Deliver historical arguments clearly in written formats
6. Engage in self-directed learning through sustained independent research on a topic of personal interest
7. Develop communication skills verbally in presentations and class discussions
8. Deepen critical thinking and analysis

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Lecture40Lectures/Seminars: Attending and participating in 2 two-hour long seminars per week. These will be divided between lectures and small-group work
Assignment Completion68Lecture/Seminar preparation: Reading and preparing to discuss the materials assigned for each seminar
Assignment Completion140Research and writing of assessments
Field Trip2Fieldtrip to medieval Dublin: Walking tour of medieval core of Dublin
Total Workload: 250

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Introduction to medieval Ireland c.1170

Urbanisation: Terms and concepts

Defining the town

Town administrations and hierarchies

Town topography and defence

Dublin’s topography: the medieval city revealed in the modern streetscape

Urban economies

The problems of urban life

Class and Status in Irish towns: the Issue of oligarchies

Class and Status: guilds, pageantry and urban elites

Race and ethnicity: terminology and the Irish of the colony

Race and ethnicity: differentiating the Irish and alien status

Gender and sex: terminology and women’s roles

Gender and sex: Women’s experiences in medieval Irish towns

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
PresentationShort verbal and powerpoint Presentation on the proposed research project10%As required
AssignmentWritten proposal and bibliography for research project10%As required
AssignmentDocument analyses: Considered analysis of a primary source10%As required
AssignmentDissertation: 5,000 word research paper based on primary sources60%As required
ParticipationParticipation mark given for quality of participation in seminars10%n/a
Reassessment Requirement Type
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
This module is category 1
Indicative Reading List

    Other Resources

    53171, Loop, 0, A full comprehensive reading list will be provided on loop along with further resources,
    Programme or List of Programmes
    BAJHBachelor of Arts (BAJH)
    BAJHIBachelor of Arts (BAJHI)
    BAJLBachelor of Arts (BAJL)
    BAJLIBachelor of Arts (BAJLI)
    BAJLNBachelor of Arts (BAJLN) - Intra Law
    BAJPBachelor of Arts (BAJP)
    BAJPIBachelor of Arts (BAJPI)
    BAJPNBachelor of Arts (BAJPN) - Intra P

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