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Navies And Seapower, 1793-2001 (Module)

Module description

*Please note that although all module information is correct for the 2017/18 academic year, it is subject to change for future academic years.


This module examines the role of navies in defence policy and international relations. It explores the interaction of naval policy, strategy, and maritime security. The focus is on the uses and relevance of sea power in diverse contexts, historical, geographical and cultural, from the French Revolution and Empire Wars to the present day, with an emphasis on the post-1945 period. Medium and small navies, which have acquired increased relevance through UNCLOS, are not neglected. The intellectual toolkit used to analyse these includes history, political science, sociology, and cultural and media studies.

 The aims of the module are to achieve an understanding of how different countries devise different solutions to their particular needs, and how seapower fits into their defence policies. It works alongside most of the department’s MA programmes. The selected case studies do not conform a continuous narrative. They reflect the thematic, international, comparative approach, which goes beyond the traditional Anglocentric view. 

Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete this module will be able to:

  • Understand that there is no canonical experience of sea power.
  • Display a critical understanding of the use of evidence, argument and narrative.
  • Assess the development of different national naval strategies and policies, and the impact of public opinion in their making.
  • Demonstrate a critical approach to historical and current debates and controversies, and how they shape current attitudes towards sea power.

Staff information

Dr. Carlos Alfaro Zaforteza*

Teaching pattern

Typically, 1 credit equates to 10 hours of work. For a Full Year 40-credit module, this will equate to 40 hours of teaching time (2 hours per week) with 360 hours of self study.

Module assessment - more information

Exam only*

Key information

Module code 7SSWM109

Credit level 7

Assessment written examination/s

Credit value 40

Semester Full-year

Study abroad module No