Checking date: 28/04/2023

Course: 2024/2025

Cultural history: power and cultural representations
Bachelor in History and Politics (Plan: 394 - Estudio: 352)


Department assigned to the subject: Humanities: History, Geography and Art Department

Type: Electives
ECTS Credits: 6.0 ECTS


Requirements (Subjects that are assumed to be known)
At the end of the course, the student is expected to be able to: - Know the basic principles of the Cultural History discipline. - Reflect on the complex social and ideological nature of any cultural expression in the wider context of the society from which it emerges. - Understand the relationship between power, understood as effective authority, and culture, with its institutions, practices and languages. - Acknowledge the different ways in which power has embodied itself, connecting them to their social, political and ideological meaning. - Locate the information necessary to correctly fulfill his or her duties, as well as interpret it in order to elaborate contents and well-formed opinions. - Communicate and argue with academic rigor on the contents of the course, both in oral and written form. - Work with neatness, efficiency and in depth, both on his or her own and in groups.
Skills and learning outcomes
Description of contents: programme
Cultural History analizes History not from the point of the view of the big events that have shaped it, but rather by looking at the cultural practices (in the broadest sense) of societies, or of the different classes or groups within those societies. Combining the perspectives of the anthropologist with those of the historian and the cultural analyst, it discusses key elements such as social structures and movements, cultural rituals or the evolution of concepts like identity, ideology or power. This very last one is the main object of this course. From Antiquity to our days, different social classes, groups, cliques, political parties or people exerting power, whether dcemocratically or by the use of coercion, have used art and culture as emblem, reflection, advertising or ostentation of such authority. This course wants the students to recognise the different ways and cultural practices - mostly literature and art, although others such as cinema or digital media may also be addresses on occasion - power has made use of in key moments of history. The students will analyse in depth the relationship between those practices and the power they emerge from or replicate, in order to be able to throw some light on the ideological, social and political aspects that intertwine with the artistic, aesthetic and cultural ones. 0. Understanding Cultural History 1. Religion and the Church 2. Nobility 3. The Sovereign and the State 4. War 5. Liberalism and National Sovereignty 6. The Ideology of Political Parties 7. Bourgeoisie and Power: Culture and Modernism 8. Comunism: Art and Propaganda 9. Fascism: the Cult of the Leader 10. Democracy and Power: Biopolitical Critique 11. Imperialism: Power and Identity 12. The Power of Money in Capitalist Societies
Learning activities and methodology
LECTURES: The professor will present the theoretical grounds of the course, with the help of audiovisual material. SEMINARS: The students will work in groups with the materials associated to the continuous assessment tasks. COLLECTIVE TUTORSHIP: Before the seminar, the group will meet with the teacher in order to discuss the presentation. A second meeting will be arranged if necessary.
Assessment System
  • % end-of-term-examination 50
  • % of continuous assessment (assigments, laboratory, practicals...) 50

Calendar of Continuous assessment

Extraordinary call: regulations
Basic Bibliography
  • GREEN, Anna. Cultural History. Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan. 2007
  • ROGGE, Jörg (ed.). Cultural history in Europe : institutions - themes - perspectives. Bielefeld: transcript. 2011
  • WINTER, Jay. Sites of memory, sites of mourning : the Great War in European cultural history. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1995

The course syllabus may change due academic events or other reasons.