International Relations of the Middle East POLITIC5093

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course introduces students to the international relations of the Middle East, and places these relations in the context of major political changes during the colonial, Cold War, and post-Cold War periods. The course allows students to explore key themes such as conflict, security, nationalism, and intervention.


One one-hour lecture and one one-hour seminar held weekly for 10 weeks

Requirements of Entry

Open to postgraduate students only.

Excluded Courses





Essay (2000 words), 40%

Essay (3000 words), 60%

Course Aims

This module aims to provide an introduction to the contemporary Middle East through a rigorous engagement with theories of international relations. The module places the Middle East in its international context, exploring histories of empire and decolonisation, hegemony and resistance, conflict and cooperation, as well as identity and foreign policy. Attention will also be paid to key themes in international relations, such as conflict, security, nationalism, and intervention. The debate on the features of a regional sub-system and foreign policy analysis will be examined through the process of Arab regional integration and the Arab-Israeli conflict. By taking this module, students will be able to engage in more specialised study of the region, either in whole or in part.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ Examine the individual history and politics of the Arab states of North Africa, the Levant, and the Gulf, as well as Turkey, Israel and Iran.

■ Explain and apply key concepts and perspectives relating to the development of the study of international relations in the Middle East.

■ Critically assess different forms of international relations between Middle Eastern states, within the context of colonialism, the Cold War and the post-Cold War periods.

■ Advance reasoned and factually supported arguments in writing.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.