Great Britain: The State We're In

Module code: HS1013

Module co-ordinator: Roey Sweet 

Module Outline

This module will introduce students to the key debates surrounding Britain’s ‘rise and fall’ from its development as the ‘first industrial nation’ and leading world power to its relative industrial decline and post-imperial role: the 'state we're in' today. We will explore the key changes that have taken place in British life, including social, cultural, economic and political trends and the different ways these have been interpreted by historians. We will also focus upon what impact Britain’s changing role as a world power has had on the domestic life of the British people. Topics may vary from year to year, but will focus on five core themes which have shaped modern Britain: democratisation; industrialisation and de-industrialisation; hard and soft imperialism; social and cultural change; religion, science and modernity. The chronological span will be from c. 1688 to the present, but this may vary according to the topic and the precise focus of different lecturers.


  • 21 hours of lectures
  • 9 hours of tutorials
  • 170 hours of guided independent study


  • Essay, 2,000 words (50%)
  • Exam, 2 hours (50%)