Laatst Gewijzigd: 11-10-2011
In the 17th century Thomas Hobbes postulated that humans were by nature warlike and that peace could only be achieved by states. By contrast Jean-Jacques Rousseau argued a century later that people were essentially peaceful and only became belligerent when corrupted by civilisation. These philosophical thoughts about the human nature have impacted ideas on warfare in the past enormously. It is only in the last decades that there has been a shift from normative speculations to an assessment of the archaeological data that can inform us about violence and conflict throughout human history. In this course we will evaluate data and ideas about violence and conflict from Prehistory up to the Great War (1914-1918), with evidence from various parts of the world.
The Honours Class will explore the theoretical and practical dimensions of recent, excellent research into conflict and violence through the ages, and will proceed in this manner beyond any ordinary descriptive account. The course will confront students with the major ideas and controversies in the current discourse about conflict in history. Students will learn to think critically about this topic and how to evaluate the material evidence for war and its social implications.
The Honours Class will comprise a series of lectures, which will explore violence and conflict in various periods and from various theoretical perspectives. Whenever possible, reference to conflict in our days will be taken into account. Students will learn from renowned scholars from several countries, who will present the latest developments in their fields of expertise, with ample opportunities for discussion and reflection.
De Honours Class zal worden ingericht rond acht bijeenkomsten van elk twee uur. De Honours Class vindt plaats in blok III van het tweede semester, de inschrijving sluit 1 december 2011.
Prof. P.M.M.G. Akkermans