IR5012 - Representing Political Violence

What will I learn on this module?

This module looks at the ways in which political violence is represented in the media, specifically the ways political violence is racialised and gendered. You will look at race and gender as analytical categories in international relations, along with the methodologies that scholars use to research these, and you will apply these understandings to the study of political violence via case studies such as the FARC, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, the War in Iraq, Daesh and Black Lives Matter.

How will I learn on this module?

This module is student-led and research focused. You will attend lectures each week which will develop your theoretical knowledge of gendered and racialised media constructions and your methodological skills, and you will apply these to case studies in the seminars.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

Developing your ability to critically think about media representations is central to this module and your academic development will be facilitated through weekly lectures and seminars, where you will receive support from your academic community in the form of your peers and the module tutor. The second half of this module looks at particular case studies and how political violence has been gendered and/or racialised. Seminars will guide you through the process of undertaking a case study and doing media analysis.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at:
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team –

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
1. Critically engage with academic debates of gender and race in the representation of political violence
2. Critically analyse the contribution of the analytical categories of gender and race to the study of international politics and how social constructions of politically violent actors impact upon their representation

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
3. Critically apply methods of textual analysis to case studies to critique representations of political violence
4. Synthesise complex information and present a coherent argument based on evidence and engagement with academic and non-academic sources

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
5. Critically reflect on your own positionality within a gendered and racialised world

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed by:

1x 3500-word case study (100%) – you will undertake a case study of gendered and/or racialised representations of political violence (MLOs: 1, 2, 3, 4)





Module abstract

Much of what we learn about political violence is accessed through the media, but the representation of political violence is rarely neutral. This module looks at how gender, race and religion intersect in the representation of political violence to construct the ‘other’ for public consumption, and the implications of these framings. This is a research-centred module based on student enquiry. You will study theoretical and methodological approaches to media representations and apply these insights to case studies of political violence, such as the FARC, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, the Iraqi insurgency, Daesh and Black Lives Matter.

Course info

UCAS Code L2L2

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years full-time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Social Sciences

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024 or September 2025

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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