POLS3334 The International Politics of Africa

6 points
Not available in 2020UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 3 option in the Political Science and International Relations major sequence
  • The area of knowledge for this unit is Society and Culture
  • Category B broadening unit for students
  • Level 3 elective
This unit explores and critically analyses the international politics of Africa, drawing on historical developments to examine contemporary dynamics. The first part of the unit examines key historical and conceptual contexts—including the slave trade, colonialism, the Cold War and the global political economy—that have shaped and help us to understand contemporary African states and their regional and international relationships. The second part explores key relationships between African states, the African Union, and major external actors like the US, EU, China and the UN, examining key themes including regional integration, economic development, natural resources, counter-terrorism and peacekeeping. The third part examines the positions of African actors, and their impacts, on key issues on the global agenda, including development, trade, climate change, and global governance reform.
Students are able to (1) critically understand and analyse how both African and non-African actors have shaped and continue to shape the international relations of contemporary Africa; (2) critically understand relevant theories and concepts that seek to explain relationships between Africa and broader international society; (3) critically understand and analyse the nature and outcomes of a range of key contemporary relationships between Africa and external actors; (4) critically evaluate the positions of African actors, and their influence, on key issues in contemporary international politics; (5) conduct individual research using Political Science and International Relations research methods on a topic pertaining to this unit; and (6) prepare for and participate in informed, critical discussion of Africa's international politics.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) a critical review essay; (2) a research essay; and (3) tutorial participation. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit except in the case of a bachelor's pass degree student who has obtained a mark of 45 to 49 overall and is currently enrolled in this unit, and it is the only remaining unit that the student must pass in order to complete their course.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr Muhammed Dan Suleiman
Unit rules
any Level 2 Political Science and International Relations unit
Contact hours
up to 3 hours per week
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Books and other material wherever listed may be subject to change. Book lists relating to 'Preliminary reading', 'Recommended reading' and 'Textbooks' are, in most cases, available via the Booktopia Textbook Finder, which has the functionality to search by course code, course, ISBN and title, and may also be posted or available at the appropriate school's administrative offices. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.