Mao to Mandela: Twentieth-Century Leaders of the non-Western World
Value: one unit
Taught through weekly lectures and weekly follow-up seminars
Oral Presentation (10%); Best Essay of 2 (30%), Take Home Exam (20%) and Exam (40%)
The course establishes a framework for the discussion of the politics of extra-European societies as represented by their leaders in the twentieth century. The leaders are studied both in terms of what their lives represent, and as individuals. The leaders represent political ideas on leadership and varying notions of what constitutes authority, as well as examples of the phenomenon of charisma. One of our tasks is to understand how these societies are different. The course then looks at a variety of case studies which might include (amongst others): Nelson Mandela in South Africa; Gandhi and Indira Gandhi in India, Mao in China; Peron and Che Guevara in Latin America; the Zionist, Ben Gurion; Ayatollah Khomeini and militant Islamism in Iran. It assesses their role in the development of nationalism, and of the wars and revolutions which arose from resistance to the West, especially imperialism. It discusses their ideological vision, interpreting its origins and aims. Finally, it looks at the seeming clash between Islam and the West, and relates it to resources, particularly oil.