History of the Contemporary World

Academic year
Subject Area
Language of Instruction
Mode of Delivery
ECTS Credits
1st Cycle Studies

Recommended Prerequisites


Teaching Methods

Classes are taught in a theoretical and practical approach, with an aim to encourage research, discussion and student self-learning, particularly by providing information on selected literature topics to be covered in class.

In addition to the theoretical exposures done by the professor, practical classes act as reading workshops and discussion of texts previously selected, searching to consolidate the understanding and discussion of central issues of the Program.  

Learning Outcomes

Encourage the construction of a general knowledge sketch about the ideas, facts and historical systems of social organization that have emerged and clashed in the main space of the Contemporary World contexts.

Define and discuss basic concepts of modernity, especially the ones that expressed in socioeconomic and political systems that characterized the contemporary era.

Interpreting the historical relations that were established between social theories, ideologies and historical practices in key junctures of crisis and transformation of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. 

Work Placement(s)



I The "modern world":definitions

II The “long  XIXth century liberal revolutions and liberal states-liberalism as "the idea of the century";industrialized societies; socialisms

III The affirmation of the USA (1783-1900);the South American nationalisms

IV Transformations of capitalism between the XIXth and the XXth centuries

V The European balance in question: the rupture of imperialism and international relations (1871-1914).World War I and its effects

VI The crisis of liberal democracies and the rise of fascism in Europe between the wars; the 1929 crisis and its political effects

VII The Soviet Union and the effects of the communist revolution – Stalin's Russia, Soviet communism; Chinese communism; Japan conquering an empire, The India of Gandhi

VIII The Second World War and the collapse of European hegemony: the construction of the Cold War

IX The Western democracies, the societies of "welfare"-social revolution of the 50s and 60s; the path of neoliberal globalization 

Head Lecturer(s)

João Pedro Amaral Cabouco Rodrigues

Assessment Methods

Periodic or by final exam as given in the course information : 100.0%


BAYLY, C. A. - The birth of the modern world : 1780-1914 : global connections and comparisons. Malden : Blackwell Publishing, 2004. [BP 930.9 BAY]

HISTÓRIA do século XIX. Gisèle Berstein [et al.]. Coord. Serge Berstein . Lisboa : Publicações Europa-América, 1997. [BP 930.9 HIS]

HOBSBAWM, E. J. - A era do império : 1875-1914. Lisboa : Editorial Presença, 1990. [BP 930.9 HOB]

HOBSBAWM, E. J. - A era dos extremos : breve história do século XX : 1914-1991. 2ª ed.. Lisboa : Editorial Presença, 1998. [BP 930.9 HOB]

ROBERTS, J. M. - História do século XX. Lisboa : Editorial Presença, 2007. 2 vol. [BP 930.9 ROB]