Faculty of Arts

Undergraduate - Unit

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12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
OfferedClayton Second semester 2015 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Michael Ure


Selected topics in political and international relations theories focussing upon the nature of epic or grand theories of politics and the role of normative and analytical thinking in such theories. Ideas and arguments considered are of two kinds:

  1. Models of construction and deconstruction of the history of thought in writings of selected theorists including Heidegger, Arendt, Strauss and Feyerabend;
  2. Expressed and assumed conceptions of knowledge and opinion, power and morality, culture and civilisation in texts of selected political and international relations theorists.


Upon completion of the unit students will be able to:

  1. Understand the main ideas and arguments of selected theorists studied.
  2. Analyse and discuss accounts of the history of political and international relations theories considered as a tradition of discourse.
  3. Relate and connect arguments regarding power, justice, order and disorder in theories of politics and international relations to moral concerns raised in state and global political forums.
  4. Assess arguments that grand theories of politics are both empirical and normative, aimed at both knowledge and action.


Within semester assessment: 60%
Exam: 40%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 288 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)


This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


COS4399, EUR4399