Studying online

There are now 2 possible online modes for units:

Units with modes Online timetabled and Online flexible are available for any student to self-enrol and study online.

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Unit Overview


Between the seventeenth and the twentieth centuries, societies emerged in many parts of the world which deliberately gave 'white' people power over other 'races'. This unit begins by considering the material and intellectual origins of white supremacy. Emerging doctrines of racial differentiation and evolution are viewed against the background of colonisation, plantation slavery and inter-European warfare. The remainder of the unit is devoted to case studies of racial domination in a number of societies including South Africa, the United States of America, Kenya, Zimbabwe, New Zealand and Australia.

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face
Semester 1AlbanyFace to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 2 option in the History; Gender Studies; Human Rights major sequences
  • Level 2 elective

Students are able to (1) describe and assess the basic historiographical issues characteristic of the discipline of History through the example of historical writing on white supremacy; (2) identify and evaluate the historiographical problems posed by historical analyses that connect class, race and white supremacy in the United States, South Africa and Australia, and gender and white supremacy in the United States and South Africa; (3) demonstrate a detailed understanding of the history of South Africa (1870–1994), the American South (1863–1963), Kenya (1900–1963), Zimbabwe (1890–1980), Australia (1880–1970) and New Zealand (1880–1970); (4) locate appropriate sources for research essays; and (5) present arguments in both written and oral assessments using the conventions of the historical discipline.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) tutorial participation; (2) research essay; and (3) a reflective essay. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr Jeremy Martens
Unit rules
a Level 1 History unit
or EURO1101 Europe Now: Cultures and Identities
or GEND1901 Gender in Australia
HIST2249 White Supremacy.
HIST3349 White Supremacy
Contact hours
lectures: 18 (2 hours per week in weeks 1–9)
tutorials: 11 (1 hour per week in weeks 2–12)
  • 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.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.