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Politics & the Street - POL00046H

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  • Department: Politics
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Alejandro Pena
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2022-23
    • See module specification for other years: 2021-22

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Autumn Term 2022-23

Module aims

The module aims to understand social mobilisations and protests as a constitutive and recurrent phenomena in modern politics affecting governments of all sorts, either authoritarian or democratic. The module adopts a dual approach to the question. On the one side, the module presents a number of theoretical approaches to contentious politics, equipping students with analytical tools to analyse and unpack the trajectory of diverse protest episodes. On the other, the module engages students with concrete protest episodes and their effects, ranging from environmental and nationalist movements, to austerity protest and pro-democracy upheavals. At the same time, the module illuminates the role of agents involved, from social movement actors and elites, to governments and the police, as well as the structural variables at play in 'Politics and the Street'.

Module learning outcomes

By completing this module, students will:

  • Be able to analyse, distinguish, and compare different episodes of contentious politics and protest;
  • Be able to critically to interpret and assess the relevance of diverse instances of social mobilisation for international and national politics, in areas such as democratisation, nationalism, human rights, religion, the environment, and the economy, among others;
  • Be able to critically apply a variety of theoretical frameworks to understand the emergence and development of diverse social movements and protests episodes.


Task Length % of module mark
Essay 3000 words
N/A 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Essay 3000 words
N/A 100

Module feedback

Students will receive written timely feedback on their formative assessment. They will also have the opportunity to discuss their feedback during the module tutor?s feedback and guidance hours.

Students will receive written feedback on their summative assessment no later than 20 working days after submission; and the module tutor will hold a specific session to discuss feedback, which students can also opt to attend. They will also have the opportunity to discuss their feedback during the module tutor?s regular feedback and guidance hours.

Indicative reading

Edwards, Gemma (2014), Social Movements and Protest, Cambridge University Press.

Tilly, Charles (2012). Social Movements, 1768-2012, Paradigm Publishers.

Tarrow, S. (2011). Power in Movement: Social Movements and Contentious Politics, Cambridge University Press.

Tilly, Charles (2006). Regimes and Repertoires, The University of Chicago Press.

Goldstone, J. (2003). States, Parties and Social Movements, Cambridge University Press.

McAdam, D., Tarrow, S., Tilly, C. (2001). Dynamics of Contention, Cambridge University Press.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.