The University of Southampton
Courses

HIST6106 Jewish History & Culture Research Skills

Module Overview

This module is designed to serve as a practical introduction to the skills required for taking the Masters and to complement your studies in Jewish History and Culture. Using case studies taken from modern Jewish history, it will focus on the use of primary sources and the engagement with secondary literature in order to prepare you for writing your dissertation.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

• major debates in the historiography of the Jews and central issues in the development of Jewish cultures • key issues and debates concerning modern Jewish history and culture • competing concepts of Jewishness • the role of the Jewish religion in the construction of Jewish cultures

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • major debates in the historiography of the Jews and central issues in the development of Jewish cultures
  • key issues and debates concerning modern Jewish history and culture
  • competing concepts of Jewishness
  • the role of the Jewish religion in the construction of Jewish cultures
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • demonstrate originality and confidence in the scholarly application of knowledge, and the ability to advance that knowledge through research informed by the work of others
  • work independently and effectively using library, archival and internet resources and demonstrate efficient time management
  • give an effective oral presentation that engages and informs its audience
  • contribute to original and intellectually challenging discussion in a group environment, listening and responding to the views of others
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • evaluate particular elements of Jewish history and culture and make connections across different historical, cultural and political contexts
  • recognise and apply methods by which Jewish history and culture can be analysed
  • integrate close textual analysis and contextual research
  • demonstrate confidence and independence of thought
  • synthesise and evaluate complex material

Syllabus

In the first session, we will discuss how to find primary sources in archives and published materials. You will also be introduced to a range of bibliographic databases and Internet resources that will allow you to extend your research beyond the materials physically available in London libraries. In the next sessions dedicated to specific case studies (the Dreyfus affair, Jewish emancipation in England or German-Jewish identity), you will be given guidance on ways to interrogate source materials and to make best use of secondary research by other scholars. We will explore how to read and analyse texts closely, and will work on developing analytical and critical skills. We will also provide guidance on how to prepare and write a dissertation. In addition to acquiring the skills essential to historical research, there will be seminars that focus specifically on knowledge and understanding of particular areas of Jewish history and culture that were not substantially covered during the first year.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Teaching methods include • a weekly 2-hour class • independent study and research • individual tutorials • a visit to Southampton archive and library Additionally, you will be required to give at least one class presentation. Feedback on these presentations will be provided, giving you constructive criticism on content and communication skills. An informal assessment of one presentation covering academic content, quality of management, and quality of communication will take place, providing the experience for the formal oral presentation in the second semester core module. Primary resources will be a prominent part of the seminars, with the aim of producing familiarity in handling and engaging with archive material and fostering the ability, through example and experience, of incorporating these texts into critical frameworks with original insight. Throughout the module you will be encouraged to pursue your own particular research interests and case studies. Learning activities include • You will be asked to prepare for each seminar by following the recommended reading and preparing individual presentations on the examination of specific sources.

TypeHours
Tutorial2
Seminar22
Preparation for scheduled sessions270
External visits4
Project supervision2
Total study time300

Assessment

Summative

MethodPercentage contribution
Dissertation proposal  (4000 words) 40%
Review  (2000 words) 30%
Text analysis  (2000 words) 30%

Referral

MethodPercentage contribution
Essay  (4000 words) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

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