cod. 01003

Academic year 2019/20
3° year of course - Second semester
Academic discipline
Storia moderna (M-STO/02)
Attività formative affini o integrative
Type of training activity
30 hours
of face-to-face activities
6 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Learning objectives

The course is designed to:
• provide a structured introduction to the study of modern European history
• develop awareness and understanding of historical processes, such as:
a) continuity and change,
b) comparative perspectives
c) the investigation of historical problems putting them in context
• provide the methodology required to analyse historical evidence
• equip students to evaluate and interpret historical evidence critically
• enable students to develop ability to summarize and orally communicate an historical issue,


Students must possess linguistic skills in order to conceptualise problems and issues in the appropriate manner by setting up in their expositions hierarchy of values and priorities.

Course unit content

This course offers a broad survey of modern European history from the Renaissance to the Napoleonic wars. It is designed to introduce students to key issues and scholarly debates in the political, religious, social and cultural history as they played out on a local and on a global scale: the Renaissance, the epochal expansion of Europe into the new world, the break-up of Latin Christianity into the competing religious communities, the construction of the modern state, the formation of overseas empires and the coming of capitalism, the Scientific Revolution, the French Revolution.

Full programme

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1) Aurelio Musi, Le vie della modernità, Milano, Sansoni. Optionally: Renata Ago, Vittorio Vidotto, Storia moderna, Roma-Bari, Laterza, to be used with an Historical Atlas or downloaded maps.

2) One choice between:
a) Maria Fusaro, Reti commerciali e traffici globali in età moderna, Roma-Bari, Laterza
b) Patrizia Delpiano, La schiavitù in età moderna, Roma-Bari, Laterza
c) Elena Bonora, La Controriforma, Roma-Bari, Laterza
d) Lodovica Braida, Stampa e cultura in Europa, Roma-Bari, Laterza

Teaching methods

Introductory lectures, classes and practical classes.
During the classes the teacher will introduce – either in chronological order either on a subject basis - the main issues of early modern history. During the practical classes historiographical texts and documentary sources will be examined to enable students to use the sources themselves and to stimulate discussion on the topics covered. Historical maps will also be shown, to help students to frame the events in space.
Students are required to study the reference book on their own. To deepen their understanding, students will also be required to choose a book between those suggested in the programme.

Assessment methods and criteria

Oral by examination.
The knowledge and skills acquired during the course will be assessed through an oral examination in Italian. The examination will start with a few questions to assess the student’s ability to put people and events in the correct space and chronological order.
The knowledge and skills verified by the examination are:
a) The ability to place key events, char.acters and the social and cultural development in correct chronological order.
b) The lexical precision in describing specific phenomena of the early modern period and, more generally, the use of the specific language of the historical disciplines.
c) Adequate ability to critically revise the contents learned during the course and through the study of the texts, as well as the aptitude to link structures and dynamics, and to identify causal relationships.
d) The ability to establish connections between early modern period and the contemporary world.
In order to verify the achievement of such knowledge and skills, oral test questions are designed to assess (aside from the knowledge itself) the ability to apply the skills developed independently and originally, the ability to expand textual analysis through connections, comparisons and contrasts, lexical precision, and the ability to deal with complex issues by building complex arguments. Failure is determined by the inability to understand the basic elements of the course, particularly with regard to the placement of events and characters in the correct temporal and spatial context; by the inability to express himself/herself in correct Italian; by the inability to explain specific concepts and phenomena related to the early modern period with adequate lexical precision; by the lack of preparation and knowledge of the texts in the program.
Specifically, a fail is determined by the lack of an understanding of the minimum
content of the course, the inability to express oneself adequately, by a
lack of autonomous preparation, the inability to solve problems related to
information retrieval and the decoding of complex texts, as well as an
inability to make independent judgments. A pass (18-23/30) is
determined by the student’s possession of the minimum, fundamental
contents of the course, an adequate level of autonomous preparation
and ability to solve problems related to information retrieval and the
decoding of complex texts, as well as an acceptable level of ability in
making independent judgments. Middle-range scores (24-27/30) are
assigned to the student who produces evidence of a more than sufficient
level (24-25/30) or good level (26-27/30) in the evaluation indicators
listed above. Higher scores (from 28/30 to 30/30 cum laude) are awarded
on the basis of the student’s demonstration of a very good or excellent
level in the evaluation indicators listed above.

Other information

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