Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2020-2021 (archived)


Department: Government and International Affairs


Type Tied Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Not available in 2020/21 Module Cap
Tied to L2K107
Tied to M1K507
Tied to M1K607


  • None.


  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • The module aims to give students an appropriately advanced understanding of selected issues in the politics of military occupation, including an appreciation of the historical contexts in which such issues arise, and to encourage them to evaluate selected examples of military occupation in the light of relevant normative expectations.


  • 1. Evolution of the practice and meaning of military occupation
  • 2. Defining military occupation
  • 3. Forms of military government
  • 4. Occupation and obligation
  • 5. Sovereignty and occupation
  • 6. Justice under occupation
  • 7. Occupation and regime transformation
  • 8. Case study 1
  • 9. Case study 2

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • An appreciation of the complexity of military occupation
  • An understanding of military occupation as a political phenomenon
  • An understanding of key definitions and distinctions drawn within the context of military occupation
  • Awareness of controversies relating to the origins and development of military occupation
Subject-specific Skills:
  • By the end of the module students should be able to demonstrate:-
  • The ability to evaluate competing definitions of military occupation
  • The ability to recognize and evaluate the normative expectations surrounding military occupations
  • The capacity to apply the above understandings and abilities to specific instances of military occupation.
Key Skills:
  • Independent learning within a defined framework at an advanced level
  • The ability to use a wide variety of sources, including interdisciplinary sources.
  • Independent thought in evaluating existing past and current scholarship in the subject area
  • The ability to complete written work within specified deadlines
  • Advanced essay writing skills

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Teaching and learning are through a series of 1 hour lectures and an associated series of 1 hour tutorials. The lectures will provide a framework for the seminars, identifying key conceptual distinctions and controversies. The seminars will allow students, under the guidance of the tutor, to evaluate these distinctions and controversies.
  • This approach requires students to deploy research skills in preparation for seminars and to be able to analyse complex theoretical issues, requiring recourse to interdisciplinary sources, and to defend their assessment of highly contentious practical and normative choices.
  • Summative assessment is by one essay of 4,000 words. These essays will require students to research, prepare and write highly analytical assessments that display a knowledge of theoretical issues and an ability to relate these theoretical issues to specific instances of military occupation.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Seminars 9 Weekly 2 hours 18
Preparation and Reading 132
Total 150

Summative Assessment

Component: Essay Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Essay 4,000 words 100%

Formative Assessment:

Either two essay plans of 750 words each, or 1 essay plan of 1,500 words according to correspondence with the mode of summative assessment.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University