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Programme & Unit Catalogues

PL50884: International relations of South and Central Asia

[Page last updated: 02 August 2022]

Academic Year: 2022/23
Owning Department/School: Department of Politics, Languages and International Studies
Credits: 6 [equivalent to 12 CATS credits]
Notional Study Hours: 120
Level: Masters UG & PG (FHEQ level 7)
Semester 2
Assessment Summary: CW 100%
Assessment Detail:
  • Coursework (CW 100%)
Supplementary Assessment:
Like-for-like reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Learning Outcomes: By the end of the unit, students will:
* Demonstrate the ability to highlight the key features of South and Central Asian politics;
* Show an appreciation of the importance of these regions in order to study Asian politics and security;
* Display an awareness of how these regions are relevant for various global security concerns;
* Develop an understanding of the international relations between states within the two regions;
* Demonstrate an ability to apply International Relations theory to the cases of Central and South Asian politics.

Aims: This unit aims to introduce students to the politics and security of two key sub-regions of Asia: South and Central Asia. Wherever relevant, it will employ major International Relations theories (including Realism, Liberalism and Constructivism) to study different aspects of the politics of the two regions.
Concerning Central Asia, the unit will conduct an examination of the recent interest in the region displayed by various great powers (US, Russia and China) and how this relates to the issues of energy security and human rights. When studying South Asia politics, students will examine a number of ethno-nationalist movements within the area. They will also study major security challenges within South Asia including religious militancy and inter-state disputes, such as the (nuclear) rivalry between India and Pakistan. The unit will pay particular attention to studying how the two sub-regions of Asia are relevant when examining contemporary global terrorism.

Skills: By the end of the unit, students will:
* Demonstrate the ability to conduct comparative analyses of South and Central Asian politics;
* Demonstrate an understanding of how to apply International Relations theories to different aspects and cases of two Asian sub-regions;
* Display an ability to conduct critical analyses and evaluation of the topics included on the unit;
* Develop research and writing skills in line with the requirements of postgraduate-standard learning;
* Demonstrate the ability to communicate effectively in small and large group settings.

Content: States and politics of Central Asia
Central Asian states and great power politics
International terrorism and regional security concerns
Human rights in Central Asia
States and politics of South Asia
The AfPak region and the global 'war on terrorism'
Territorial disputes and inter-state rivalries in South Asia
Ethno-nationalism in South Asia.

Programme availability:

PL50884 is Optional on the following programmes:

Department of Politics, Languages and International Studies


  • This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2022/23 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2023/24 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2022/23.
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