SOAS University of London

Department of Politics and International Studies

The Politics of State Violence: An Interdisciplinary Perspective

Module Code:
Taught in:
Term 2

This half-unit module  running in Term 2 seeks to critically engage with the relationship between law and state violence. How do states (ab)use law and violence? What do these often taken-for-granted terms – ‘law’ and ‘violence’ – even mean? What is the importance of (in)visibility and representation for tackling these questions? Are certain manifestations of state violence exceptional, or do they represent the political and legal norm? These and other questions will be examined contextually, through case studies ranging from U.S. involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq to the Israeli rule in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.


  • Two-hour lecture per week

Method of assessment

Assessment is made up of 70% coursework, 20% seminar participation, and 10% oral presentation.


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules