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A survey course covering a range of themes in Western European history including social and economic developments, government, religion and warfare (c. 300 - 1400).
What were the Middle Ages? This course offers an introduction to an important period of change and development in European history. It seeks to establish the key features of a distinctive western European culture that evolved over the course of a thousand years, a culture which has played a critical role in shaping our modern world. The Europe of this course is the Europe of knights, castles and crusaders; but it is also the Europe of Magna Carta and the first universities and parliaments. From our system of government to the way we educate ourselves, we live in a world where the legacy of the European Middle Ages is profound. Much of this inheritance is as relevant to Aotearoa New Zealand today as it is to European countries: Where, for example, does the idea of the ‘Crown’ originate? Where does the name adopted by Canterbury’s rugby team come from? The answer to these and many other questions lie in the melting pot that is medieval Europe.This course will offer a diverse approach to exploring the medieval world, one that will introduce you to a number of different forms of history. These will range from religious to political history via cultural history and the history of political thought. Particularly in the early parts of the course we will even explore what archaeology can tell us about the lives of medieval Europeans.
After successful completion of this course, you will be able to:1. Establish an understanding of the importance of the key factors that shaped European history in the period 300 to 1400.2. Develop transferable skills in written and oral presentation in conjunction with the analysis of problems. 3. Learn how to evaluate critically the strengths and limitations of primary source material – including chronicles, administrative documents and images.4. Learn how to understand and evaluate a society on its own terms without the superimposition of contemporary assumptions.5. Obtain an awareness of the pivotal role that the period 300-1400 played in shaping modern western culture, including that of Aotearoa New Zealand.
This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:
Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award
Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.
Employable, innovative and enterprising
Students will develop key skills and attributes sought by employers that can be used in a range of applications.
Students will comprehend the influence of global conditions on their discipline and will be competent in engaging with global and multi-cultural contexts.
Students must attend one activity from each section.
Please check the course LEARN page for further details and updates.
Wim Blockmans and Peter Hoppenbrouwers;
Introduction to Medieval Europe 300-1500
Image: Kaiserdom Speyer. Photo: Chris Jones.
Domestic fee $844.00
International fee $3,950.00
* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.
For further information see