Rebels and Revolutionaries

Subject HIST20065 (2012)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2012.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2012:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: A 1.5-hour lecture per week and a 1-hour tutorial for 11 weeks
Total Time Commitment:

8.5 hours per week: total time commitment 102 hours





Recommended Background Knowledge:


Non Allowed Subjects:


Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website:


Assoc Prof Sean Scalmer


Sean Scalmer

Subject Overview:

Rebels and revolutionaries make history. How do they do so? And with what consequences? This unit surveys the modern history of rebellion over more than 200 years. It is structured around the career of significant rebels, from Lenin to Gandhi, from the Suffragettes to Julian Assange. Attention is directed to three major issues: the historical context that incites rebellion; the political techniques rebels adopt and perfect; and the influence of rebels on later struggles. Because the course is organised chronologically, students engage not only with individual struggles, but also learn about the changing forms of political action over time.


On completion of the subject, students should

  • have a detailed knowledge of the history of modern political rebellion
  • have an understanding of the context that incites rebellion, of the changing techniques developed by rebels, and of the influence of earlier struggles on later movements
  • understand the views and actions of those who lived in earlier times
  • develop an aptitude in building historical explanations
  • develop the ability to use historical knowledge to illuminate the conflicts and possibilities of the present


Research Essay (2,500 words, due mid semester) (55%). Reflective Essay (1,500 words, due at end of semester) (35%). Tutorial Participation and Presentation (10%).

Hurdle requirement: students must attend a minimum of 75% of tutorials in order to pass this subject. Assessment submitted late without an approved extension will be penalised at 10% per day; after five days, no late assessment will be accepted. In-class tasks missed without approval will not be marked. All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject.

Prescribed Texts:

Subject readings will be available online

Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

Students who complete this subject will

  • research through competent use of the library and other information sources, and the definition of areas of inquiry and methods of research
  • critical thinking and analysis through recommended reading, essay writing and tutorial discussion, and by determining the strength of an argument
  • thinking in theoretical terms through lectures, tutorial discussion, essay writing and engagement in the methodologies of the humanities and social sciences
  • understanding of social, ethical and cultural context through the contextualisation of judgements
  • developing a critical self-awareness, being open to new ideas and possibilities and by constructing an argument
  • communicating knowledge intelligibly and economically through essay writing and tutorial discussion
  • written communication through essay preparation and writing
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: History
History Major
Related Breadth Track(s): Economics in History

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