RHI-20306 Globalization in Historical Perspective


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Independent study
Course coordinator(s)dr P de Zwart
Lecturer(s)dr. FD Huijzendveld
dr. AJAM Schuurman
prof. dr. EHP Frankema
dr P de Zwart
Examiner(s)dr. AJAM Schuurman

Language of instruction:



This course pays attention to the process of globalization in a historical perspective. It criticizes the view of globalization as a linear, western, homogenizing process. It pays therefore attention to different periods of globalization in the past, different dimensions of globalization (political, military, economic, demographic, cultural and environmental) and different parts of the world. Special attention is given to the development of an international order and the changing position and power of nation-states; and to the divergent economic and technological development since the Industrial Revolution. Students will get an overview of the most important long term processes of the last five hundred years with an emphasis on changes in the recent period. They will be trained in how to use historical knowledge in order to better interpret contemporary developments and how to find themselves relevant historical literature.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- explain the development of globalization over time and describe its main characteristics in different time periods;
- compare the differences between the economic, political, cultural, environmental and social dimensions of the globalization process in time;
- assess the changing position of the nation-state in a globalizing world;
- apply a historical perspective and social science framework to contemporary societal developments;
- apply the appropriate methods to search for academic historical literature;
- evaluate historical literature, sources and data on the basis of their reliability, representativeness and persuasiveness.


- lectures;
- tutorials and independent study;
- students will have to read the relevant literature for the lectures and tutorials;
- they are expected to actively participate in class discussions;
- students will do library research;
- students have to write a paper.


- written exam (80%);
- individual paper based on a scientific historical article (20%).
A bonus arrangement applies. To pass the course both components require a minimum mark of 5.50.


David Held, Anthony McGrew, David, (1999). Goldblatt and Jonathan Perraton, Global transformations. Politics, economics and culture (Stanford/Cambridge 1999) and new editions.
A course guide will be distributed at the first lecture, and can be found on the internet site of the Rural History.

Compulsory for: BINInternational Development StudiesBSc2MO
Compulsory for: WUDPGBSc Minor Development and Policies in a Globalizing World2MO