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Culture Europe


Admission requirements

This course is only available for students in the BA International Studies.


When studying a particular region of the world, knowledge of its cultural universe is crucial; the study of culture allows the understanding of the deeper structures behind history, politics and economy. Culture is the symbolic repertoire that gives form and content to national and collective identities, the subjectivity of individuals, and the environment. Culture is expressed in both material and immaterial resources, through which relations of legitimacy and domination are built in specific temporal and geographical contexts. Culture is a domain in which strategies for winning consent and cohesion are reflected, but it also includes mechanisms of in- and exclusion or conflicts on the basis of e.g. nationality, language, religion, ethnicity or gender. This course looks at these processes in specific cultural contexts of the world, and revises the regional scholarly traditions in the study and circulation of culture.

The purpose of this course is to provide students with a broad overview of (Western) European culture and its influences inside and outside Europe. The course is designed around key concepts of culture and unity & diversity in Europe. What is the cultural and linguistic meaning of the expression “(Western) Europe”?
The European Union will play a prominent role as the heart of nowadays Europe, and will be of prominent interest as a background entity for the topics at stake in this course.
Diverse dimensions of Europe`s culture (history, globalization/regionalization, religion/secularization, migration, language, film, literature) will be discussed. Specific attention will be paid to such notions as imperialism, post colonialism, migration, identity, memory, etc. Students will be challenged to contrast and analyse more specific individual (historical/thematic/regional) cases.

Course objectives

Students will have:

  • a better understanding of the linguistic and cultural aspects in European processes of change (colonization and decolonization ; crises; migration; religious change, shifting borders, etc.)

  • a better understanding of various links between politics, religion, language, arts, and political entities (states) in Europe (post mid XIXth century)

  • a critical comprehension of scholarly concepts such as the “Decline of the West”, “(European) identity”, “memory”

  • a critical comprehension of the impact of political-societal changes on language, film, literature.
    Students will be able

  • to analyse in a scholarly way primary (including political texts, memoirs, fiction, and film) and secondary sources

  • to present and debate intellectually scholarly ideas and analyses.


The timetable is available on the BA International Studies website.

Mode of instruction

Lecture course with tutorials.
Attending lectures and tutorials is compulsory. If you are not able to attend a lecture or tutorial, please inform the tutor of the course. Being absent without notification can result in a lower grade or exclusion from the final exam or essay.

Course Load

Total course load for the course is 5 EC x 28 hours is 140 hours, broken down by: – Hours spent on attending lectures and seminars: 32 hours – Time for studying the compulsory literature: 60 hours – Assessments: 48 hours

Assessment method

Tutorials 30%
Midterm Exam 30%
Final Exam 40%
If the final grade is insufficient (lower than a 6), there is the possibility of retaking the full 70% of the exam material, replacing both the earlier mid- and endterm grades. No resit for the tutorials is possible.


Blackboard will be used. For tutorial groups: please enroll in blackboard after your enrolment in uSis
Students are requested to register on Blackboard for this course.

Reading list

The articles for this course will be put on blackboard.


Enrollement through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available in English and Dutch

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable.


Dr. K.M.J. Sanchez, email
Prof.dr. A. Visser, email