Modern European History

Academic year: 2023-24
Course: Foundation Course Humanities
Credits: 6
Period: first semester

Number of hours: 48

Teacher(s): Francesco Fusi (

Language of instruction: English

Course Description

This course aims to introduce students to Modern European History, with an emphasis on the social, political and cultural history of 20th Century Europe.  Particular attention will be given, between the 1920s and 1940s, to the crisis of Western democracies and the advent of European mass totalitarian regimes, the emergence of cultures of hate and practices of violence, and the experience of total wars and their impact on civilian populations. The course will also shed light on the processes of collective memorialization and amnesia that overtook European governments and peoples after World War II respect to their own responsibility for war crimes and crimes against humanity, and the way in which these processes influenced the formation of different European national identities.

Course Goals

The aims of the course are to provide students with understanding of Europe’s recent history and its relationship to the present. By the end of the course students will be able to define, explain, analyze and evaluate the political and cultural consequences of the 20th Century totalitarian regimes and the postwar transition to democracy on the memory and identity of European countries.


Students will be provided with academic texts, readings, and documentaries/films. An intermediate quiz may be held throughout the course depending on the class progress.

Required Text(s)

Readings (papers, articles, book chapters, sources) provided by the Teacher.

Grade components

Attendance and participation (30%)

Final exam (70%).

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