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2010/2011  BA-IVK_SKI  Society, Culture and Identities

English Title
Society, Culture and Identities

Course Information

Language English
Point 10 ECTS (300 SAT)
Type Mandatory
Level Bachelor
Duration One Semester
Course Period Spring
6th semester
Time Table Please see course schedule at e-Campus
Study Board
Study Board for MA in International Business Communication
Course Coordinator
Fagansvarlig på amerikanske studier - Merete Borch
Main Category of the Course
  • Language and Intercultural Studies
Last updated on 29 maj 2012
Learning Objectives
The aim of this course is to give the students an applied introduction to theory and methods in cultural
studies and to a number of the most important national, ethnic and socio-cultural issues on the American
continents. Against this background, the aim is for the students to become capable of formulating and analyzing cultural issues on both an abstract and a concrete level. They will be able to mobilize this cultural and intercultural consciousness in relation to political and economic and commercial/trade tasks in companies, public organizations, NGOs etc.
Assessment Oral with Written Assignment
Marking Scale 7-step scale
Censorship External examiners
Exam Period May/June
Oral exam on the basis of a written paper, taking its point of departure in a topic from the course. Taking his or her starting point in the paper, the student opens the examination with an oral presentation followed by a discussion with the examiner and the external examiner. Other parts of the course syllabus can be included in the examination. Length of the paper: A maximum of 3 standard pages, excluding title page, table of contents, references and appendices. Deadline: See exam plan. The paper is handed in, in three copies, at the BA secretariat office. Oral exam: Duration: 20 minutes including assessment The student is given one grade for the written paper and oral exam
written paper:

• The student must be able to formulate a relevant issue of investigation within the framework of the course
• A theoretical and/or methodological basis for the analysis must be proposed
• The issue of investigation must be related to a wider field of a socio-cultural nature (for example national, racial or ethnic identity/culture)
• Possibly hypotheses for and results of the analysis must be suggested
• The student must be able to indicate how the issue in question can be mobilized in relation to a business context (for example a company, organization or NGO)

Oral exam:

• The student must be able to participate in a discussion about the chosen issue of investigation
• An analysis of the issue must be presented on the basis of the selected theoretical or methodological approach
• The theoretical/methodological approach must be discussed in relation to one or more alternative approaches
• The analysis must include the most important empirical aspects of the issue of investigation. They must be related to more general issues within the field (for example national, ethnic or other identity and/or cultural issues)
• The issue of investigation must be placed in a broader context, for example within a discussion of similar problems in another geographical area in the western hemisphere
• The business dimension – illustrating the relevance of the issue to a company, public organization, NGO, etc – must be discussed
Prerequisites for Attending the Exam
Course Content

The course includes an introduction to theoretical and methodological tools for the observation and analysis of cultural issues. Where possible and relevant, the theoretical dimension of the course will be related to and build upon the knowledge the students gained in the 2nd year general subject 'Science Theory' (Videnskabsteori). Among the concepts considered in the Societies, Cultures and Identities course are: culture and cultures, cultural and other forms of identity, identity and otherness, the boundary as an empirical and theoretical concept, difference, nation, region, ethnicity, race, gender, and religion.The theoretical approaches taken can include: social constructivism, discourse and discourse theory, semiotics and hermeneutics.

The theoretical dimension may be included in the form of special introductions, but will also be related directly to the specific cultural issues that are considered during the course, such as national and ethnic identity, race, religion, migration, multiculturalism, gender identities, etc. The course will focus on the western hemisphere as a whole and on individual nations and regions, with special focus on specific issues in English- and Spanish-speaking America.

Teaching Methods
The working methods will include class teaching and student presentations based on individual or group work.
Student Workload
Total student working hours: 300 hours
Further Information

Make-up exam

As the regular exam. The original paper is used as basis for the exam. The paper must be handed in again. If the paper was not handed in, it must be handed in in connection with the make-up exam.


As the regular exam.The original paper is used as basis for exam. The student may also choose to hand in a new paper. In either case, the paper must be handed in in connection with the re-exam.

The holding of the exam

The exam is held immediately after the ordinary exam period. After that, the exam cannot be taken until the next ordinary exam of this course.


Thomas Hylland Eriksen, Ethnicity and Nationalism. (London. Pluto Press, 2002 (2nd. ed.))

A compendium with other texts will be electronically available from the beginning of the semester.