Global Pre Modern (SMLM111)

StaffDr Zhiguang Yin - Convenor
Credit Value30
ECTS Value15
NQF Level7
Co-requisitesSMLM112 Global Modernisms
Duration of Module Term 1: 11 weeks;

Module aims

This module aims to offer you the opportunity to:

  • Learn about global literatures and cultures in the ancient, medieval and early modern periods from a range of experts in the field
  • Equip you to communicate and operate in a globalised world
  • Allow you to engage with current debates in this area, and to understand key concepts and trends

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Identify and assess movements and developments in global literature and culture through time and in relation to geography and genre
  • 2. Account for geographical variation in the development of given aspects of literary and cultural activity in different historical periods
  • 3. Compare and contrast trends and movements in literary and cultural production transhistorically
  • 4. Relate literary and cultural production to factors such as race, gender, income and education

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 5. Analyse and account for the specific features of cultural production across a range of contexts and through time
  • 6. Assess how ideas and genres cross geographical, linguistic and political borders
  • 7. Engage critically with theoretical discourses relating to global literature and culture

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 8. Interpret and analyse complex textual and cultural artefacts
  • 9. Assimilate significant quantities of data (written text and visual sources) and relate this to exemplars or case studies
  • 10. Express yourself clearly and with precision in oral and written form

Syllabus plan

Whilst the content may vary from year to year, it is envisioned that it will cover some or all of the following topics:

  • The term is framed with an introductory and a synoptic class given by one staff member, introducing you to key debates and concepts in the Global Pre Modern. Further two hour classes during term time will then be given by a range of experts across the College. Each class will centre on a given text, or cultural object/phenomenon which will be explored in depth.
  • We will cover critical terminology and definitions, research methods, key texts and ideas on Global and World Literatures and Cultures
  • Pan-Hellenism and Hellenisation
  • East meets West: medieval world
  • Sino-European relations
  • Indo-European relations
  • Latin and the European vernacular
  • Global Victorians
  • Medieval and early modern visual culture
  • Diaspora

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled learning and teaching2211 x 2 hour seminars
Guided independent study278Independent study

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Group presentation10-15 minutes1-10Feedback sheet with opportunity for tutorial follow-up

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Research report252500 words1-10Feedback sheet with opportunity for tutorial follow-up
Essay755000 words1-10Feedback sheet with opportunity for tutorial follow-up

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Research reportResearch report1-10Referral/Deferral period
EssayEssay1-10Referral/Deferral period

Re-assessment notes

Deferral – if you miss an assessment for certificated reasons judged acceptable by the Mitigation Committee, you will normally be either deferred in the assessment or an extension may be granted. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of deferral will not be capped and will be treated as it would be if it were your first attempt at the assessment.

Referral – if you have failed the module overall (i.e. a final overall module mark of less than 50%) you will be required to submit a further assessment as necessary. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of referral will be capped at 50%.

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

  • Heng, Geraldine, ‘The Global Middle Ages: An Experiment in Collaborative Humanities, or Imagining the World, 500–1500 C.E.’, English Language Notes 47.1 Spring / Summer 2009, 205-216.
  • Chaudhuri, K. N., Asia before Europe: Economy and Civilisation of the Indian Ocean from the Rise of Islam to 1750 (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1990).
  • Lieberman, Victor, Strange Parallels: Southeast Asia in Global Context, c. 800-1830, 2 vols. (Cambridge, 2003).
  • Scheidel, Walter ed., Rome and China: Comparative Perspectives on Ancient World Empires (Oxford, 2009).
  • Abu-Lughod, Janet, Before European Hegemony: the World System A.D. 1250-1350 (New York and Oxford, 1989).

Module has an active ELE page?


Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date


Key words search

Pre modern, medieval, global