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Module Specifications

Archived Version 2021 - 2022

Module Title
Module Code

Online Module Resources

NFQ level 9 Credit Rating 10
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None

The purpose of this module is to introduce students to various traditions of history writing as they have evolved in the West in the modern period from Enlightenment and Romanticism to Marxism, new social and cultural history and post-colonial theory among others. Special attention is paid to Irish historiography and how it relates to global trends. In this module students will have the opportunity to find their historical ‘tribe’. Students will be introduced to the major areas of historical thought and interpretation, distinguishing their methodologies and approaches. Students will become aware of the importance of social and political change on historians and how this has fed into directions in history writing. The module combines learning about traditions of history writing with the learning of practical skills of historiographical analysis, central to the successful completion of coursework in the MA programme.

Learning Outcomes

1. Identify the main trends in modern international and Irish historiography, their change and interplay since the 18th century till today
2. Compare and contrast different historiographical approaches to the same topic of historical inquiry
3. Identify key historians and texts associated with particular approaches to historical thinking in Irish and international contexts
4. Explain, in written and verbal form, a number of different approaches to writing history
5. Analyse and critique individual works of history writing and place them in their historiographical context
6. Identify a historical approach(es) that fits best the questions they wish to pursue in their research thesis
7. Appreciate and explain, in written and verbal form, the importance of debate, revision and discussion for the development of History as an academic discipline

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Lecture22Lectures and Seminars
Independent Study228Independent Work and Assignments
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

Section I Chronological overview
Chronological overview of Irish and European trends Nature of history writing & historiography; history writing in the early modern period; history writing during the Enlightenment; Romantic interpretations of history; Professionalisation of history & the scientific turn; history writing in Ireland post-independence; the Annales school; Marxist historiography.

Section II Thematic based approaches to history writing
New social history; new cultural history; the revisionist debate in Ireland 1980s-1990; history & memory; post-modernism and narrative in history writing; postcolonial theory and history writing in the West; feminist critique & gender history; environmental history; history of science & intellectual history; national, transnational & global history; public history; writing history in Ireland today.

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment% Examination Weight%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
Reassessment Requirement
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
Indicative Reading List

  • Bentley, Michael (ed.): 1997, Companion to historiography, London Routledge,
  • Brady, Ciaran (ed): 1994, , Interpreting Irish history: the debate on revisionism, Irish Academic Press, Dublin,
  • Budd, Adam: 2009, The modern historiography reader: Western sources, London Routledge,
  • Burke, Peter (ed.).: 2002, History and historians in the twentieth century, Oxford University Press,
  • Carroll, Clare and Patricia King (eds).: 2003, Ireland and postcolonial theory, University of Notre Dame Press,
  • Iggers, Georg G.: 2005, Historiography in the twentieth century: from scientific objectivity to the postmodern challenge, Middletown, CT : Wesleyan University Press,
  • Iggers, Georg G., Edward Wang, Supriya Mukherjee: 2016, A Global History of Modern Historiography, 2nd, London: Routledge,
  • McBride, Ian: 2003, History and memory in modern Ireland, Cambridge University Press,
  • O’Day, Alan and D. George Boyce: 1996, The making of modern Irish history: revisionism and the revisionist controversy, New York: Routledge,
  • Perry, Robert: 2016, Revisionist scholarship and modern Irish history, London: Routledge,
  • Rüsen, Jörn.: 2002, Western historical thinking: An intercultural debate, New York: Berghahn Books,
  • Tamm, Marek and Peter Burke (eds.): 2018, Debating new approaches to history, London: Bloomsbury Academic,
  • Teich, Mikuláš and Porter, Roy. (eds.): 1988, Romanticism in national context, New York: Cambridge University Press,
  • Woolf, D. R.: 2012, A global history of history, Cambridge University Press,
Other Resources

45640, Loop Site, 0, Lecture notes, slides, video recording, assigned readings and other resources,
Programme or List of Programmes