Undergraduate Module Descriptor

POL3247: Politics of Biology

This module descriptor refers to the 2019/0 academic year.

Module Content

Syllabus Plan

Whilst the module’s precise content may vary from year to year, it is envisaged that the syllabus will cover some or all of the following topics:

  • 19th C appropriations of Darwinian theory by both laissez-faire capitalist and socialist/anarchist ideology;
  • The role of biological ideas in 20th C eugenics movements and other forms of ‘dehumanisation’;
  • The notions of ‘nature’ and ‘human nature’ in debates around issues such as gender, sexuality, disability, and the use of bio-technologies;
  • The implications of contemporary understandings of development and evolution for our ideas of the human individual;
  • The role of ideas of nature and biology in humanism and posthumanism;
  • The relation to nature needed for a sustainable human future.

Learning and Teaching

This table provides an overview of how your hours of study for this module are allocated:

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

...and this table provides a more detailed breakdown of the hours allocated to various study activities:

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning & Teaching Activity2211 x two-hour seminars
Guided Independent Study50Private study – reading and preparing for weekly seminars
Guided Independent Study78Preparation and completion of assessments: independent research and writing

Online Resources

This module has online resources available via ELE (the Exeter Learning Environment).