Caucasus Studies II

Summary

On the basis of the course Caucasus Studies I, which gives the student a broad knowledge of the Caucasus region with its ethnic groups and languages, history and recent political developments, the course Caucasus Studies II focuses on central issues in Post-Soviet Caucasus, including nation- and statebuilding, intrastate conflicts and migration processes.

Admission requirements

Prerequisite courses for this course are: Passed courses: IM112E-Caucasus Studies I.

Selection:

credits 100%

About

What is Caucasus Studies?

Caucasus Studies at Malmö University is an ‘area study’. It is based on the assumption that the history of the Caucasus matters for the understanding of contemporary political, social and economic developments and that the region’s unique geographical location is crucial for understanding the conflict dynamics in the region. 

Map of Caucasus region

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The Caucasus region is located at the crossroads of Europe, Central Asia and the Middle East. Historically the region has been dominated by different empires, including the Ottoman Empire, Persia, the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War the Caucasus region has obtained a new strategic significance. Regional great powers – Turkey, Iran, Russia – again compete for political influence in the region, which is also rich in energy resources and constitutes an important transit corridor for oil and gas from the Caspian basin to Western markets. New external actors, notably USA and the EU, compete with the ‘traditional’ regional powers for political influence in the Caucasus region and for control over its strategically important energy resources and pipeline routes.

The Caucasus is one of the most complex regions of the world in terms of ethnic and linguistic diversity. Contested borders divide similar ethnic groups and nationalities.  Feelings of national 'we' are weak, while sub-national identities (clan, ethnic groups, region) are strong. The Caucasus is also a meeting place for different Islamic, Christian and pre-Christian religious traditions. Our courses provide students with an understanding of the role of ethnicity, language and religion in the post-Soviet state- and nation-building processes.

What makes Caucasus Studies unique?

Caucasus Studies at Malmö University is the only center in Western Europe providing distance learning courses on this topic. The flexible online design makes it easy for students to follow the courses in their home country and even to combine them with orther studies or work.

The multidisciplinary staff consists of researchers with solid knowledge of the particularities of the Caucasus region, combined with extensive experience from doing  field work in the region.

Caucasus Studies at Malmö Universiy has tight links with academic institutions and scholars in the Caucasus Region, as well as other international institutions with Caucasus research. The center often hosts academics from the region who stay at Malmö University campus and actively involve in Caucasus Studies courses and research.

Course modules

State and Nation Building in the Caucasus
Peoples and Languages of the Caucasus
Conflict and Conflict Resolution in the Caucasus
The Caucasus Region: Causes and Consequences of Migration

Read more about Caucasus Studies

 

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Syllabus

Syllabus for students autumn 2020

Course Code:
IM113L revision 3
Level of specialisation
G1N
Main fields of study:
No main fields
Language:
English
Date of ratification:
20 May 2020
Decision-making body:
Faculty of Culture and Society
Enforcement date:
31 August 2020
Replaces Syllabus ratified:
13 June 2019

Entry requirements

Prerequisite courses for this course are: Passed courses: IM112E-Caucasus Studies I.

Specialisation and progression relative to the degree regulations

The course can normally be included as a part of a general degree.

Purpose

The aim of the course is to provide the students with in-depth knowledge and understanding of central issues pertaining to the Caucasus region as a field of study. The course will enable students to analyse processes related to state- and nation-building, ethnic and linguistic identities, intrastate conflicts, and patterns of migration in a complex and diverse region, and to take an independent critical stance in relation to ongoing academic debates in the field of Caucasus Studies.

Contents

The course consists of four modules:

State- and Nation-building in the Caucasus (7,5 credits)
The module introduces and discusses theoretical and analytical approaches State- and Nation-building and applies these perspectives to empirical cases from post-Soviet Caucasus.

Peoples and Languages of the Caucasus (7,5 credits)
The module gives an overview of the linguistic diversity and multitude of ethnic groups in the Caucasus region and relates this to language policy and state and nation building processes.

Conflicts and Conflict Resolution in the Caucasus (7,5 credits)
The module focuses on the region’s ethnic conflicts and relates them to existing theories and tools for conflict management.

Causes and Consequences of Migration in the Caucasus (7,5 credits)
The module focuses on the extensive migration flows that have reshaped the demographic map of the region.

Learning outcomes

State- and Nation Building in the Caucasus
After completing the module the student will:

  1. demonstrate knowledge and understanding of key theoretical approaches to state- and nation building;
  2. be able to apply central concepts in analyses of empirical cases from post-Soviet Caucasus
  3. be able to discuss general as well as specific problems related to state- and nation building processes in the Caucasus;
  4. be able to recognize and critically evaluate academic and public debates related to state- and nation building in the Caucasus;
  5. demonstrate an ability to master academic language and formalities, including referencing sources in an accurate and coherent manner;
  6. demonstrate ability to complete assignments and exams within given timeframes and restrictions;

Peoples and Languages of the Caucasus
After completing the module the student will:
  1. demonstrate knowledge of languages and religions of major ethnic groups and subgroups in the Caucasus region;
  2. demonstrate knowledge of earlier and Post-Soviet language policies and minority rights;
  3. demonstrate understanding of the role in society of the ethnic, linguistic and religious diversity of the Caucasus region;
  4. critically reflect over societal and individual perspectives on the ethnic, linguistic and religious diversity in the Caucasus region;
  5. demonstrate ability to master academic language and formalities, including referencing sources in an accurate and coherent manner;
  6. demonstrate ability to complete assignments and exams within given timeframes and restrictions.

Conflicts and Conflict Resolution in the Caucasus
After completing the module the student will:
  1. demonstrate empirical knowledge of ethnic conflicts and contested borders in the Caucasus;
  2. demonstrate understanding of similarities and differences between ethnic conflicts in the Caucasus;
  3. be able to account for different theoretical explanations to ethnic conflicts as well as different tools for managing them;
  4. be able to assess the causes behind and potential solutions to ethnic conflicts in the Caucasus using established concepts and theoretical models;
  5. demonstrate ability to master academic language and formalities, including referencing sources in an accurate and coherent manner;
  6. demonstrate ability to complete assignments and exams within given timeframes and restrictions.

Causes and Consequences of Migration in the Caucasus
After completing the module the student will:
  1. demonstrate empirical knowledge of population movements in the Caucasus;
  2. demonstrate understanding of different categories of migration that have reshaped the demographic map of the region;
  3. be able to account for and utilize fundamental concepts in the field of migration studies;
  4. be able to assess the causes behind and consequences of population movements in the Caucasus;
  5. demonstrate ability to master academic language and formalities, including referencing sources in an accurate and coherent manner;
  6. demonstrate ability to complete assignments and exams within given timeframes and restrictions.

Learning activities

The course is designed as a full-time flexible distance study. Learning activities include online lectures; mandatory quizzes and assignments; interactive exercises; online forum discussions; and web seminars. The majority of the student’s workload consists of independent reading and study.

Assessments

State- and Nation Building in the Caucasus
The student’s performance in the module is assessed by individual written assignments.

  • Learning outcomes 1-6 are assessed by a portfolio of mandatory assignments (2,5 credits)
  • Learning outcomes 1-6 are assessed by an individual take-home exam (5 credits)

Peoples and Languages of the Caucasus
The student’s performance in the module is assessed by individual written assignments.
  • Learning outcomes 1-6 are assessed by a portfolio of mandatory assignments (2,5 credits)
  • Learning outcomes 1-6 are assessed by an individual take-home exam (5 credits)

Conflicts and Conflict Resolution in the Caucasus
The student’s performance in the module is assessed by individual written assignments.
  • Learning outcomes 1-6 are assessed by a portfolio of mandatory assignments (2,5 credits)
  • Learning outcomes 1-6 are assessed by an individual take-home exam (5 credits)

Causes and Consequences of Migration in the Caucasus
The student’s performance in the module is assessed by individual written assignments.
  • Learning outcomes 1-6 are assessed by a portfolio of mandatory assignments (2,5 credits)
  • Learning outcomes 1-6 are assessed by an individual take-home exam (5 credits)

Grading system
Portfolios are graded with Pass (G) or Fail (U)
Take-home exams are graded with Excellent (A), Very Good (B), Good (C), Satisfactory (D), Pass (E) or Fail (U).
The course grade is calculated as the amalgamate of the grades obtained in the individual modules.

Grading system

Excellent (A), Very Good (B), Good (C), Satisfactory (D), Pass (E) or Fail (U).

Course literature and other teaching materials

1. State and Nation-building in the Caucasus
  • Cornell, Svante E. 2015. Azerbaijan Since Independence. Armonk, UK: Taylor and Francis. [Selected chapters]
  • Hille, Charlotte. 2010. State Building and Conflict Resolution in the Caucasus. Leiden: Brill. [Selected chapters]
  • Holsti, Kalevi J. 1996. The State, War, and the State of War. Cambridge University Press. Pp. 82-122
  • Kolstø, Pål & Helge Blakkisrud. 2008. “Living with Non-recognition: State and Nationbuilding in South Caucasian Quasi-states”, Europe Asia Studies, 60(3): 484-509.
  • Kolstø, Pål. 1996. “Nation-building in the former USSR”, Journal of Democracy, 7(1): 118-132
  • Kuzio, Taras. 2001. “Transition in Post-Communist States: Triple or Quadruple?” Politics, 21(3): 168–177.
  • Mitchell, Lincoln A. 2009. “Compromising democracy: State building in Saakashvili’s Georgia”. Central Asian Survey, 28(2):171-183
  • Panossian, Ramzik. 2006. “Post Soviet Armenia: Nationalism & its (Dis)Contents”, in: Barrington Lowell, After Independence. Making and Protecting the Nation in Postcolonial and Post Communist States. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. Pp. 225-247.
  • Polese, Abel & Rekhviashvili, Lela (Eds.). 2017. “Informality and power in the South Caucasus.” Caucasus Survey, 5(1).
  • Reddaway et. al. 2004. “The War in Chechnya as a Paradigm of Russian State-building under Putin”, Post-Soviet Affairs 20, 1. Pp. 10-19.
2. Peoples and Languages of the Caucasus
  • Bedford, Sofie and Emil Aslan Souleimanov. 2016. Under construction and highly contested: Islam in the post-Soviet Caucasus. Third World Quarterly, 2016, Vol. 37, No. 9, 1559–1580.
  • Catford, J.C. 1977. Mountain of Tongues: The Languages of the Caucasus. Annual Review of Anthropology, Vol. 6, (1977), pp. 283-314.
  • Charles, Robia. 2010. Religiosity in Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan. Caucasus Analytical Digest. No 20: Religion in the South Caucasus, 2010. pp. 2-6.
  • Comrie, Bernard. 2008. Linguistic Diversity in the Caucasus. Annual Review of Anthropology; 2008, Vol. 37, Issue 1, pp. 131-143.
  • Grenoble, Lenore A. 2003. Language Policy in the Soviet Union. Kluwer Academic Publishers.
  • Pavlenko, Aneta. 2008. Multilingualism in Post-Soviet Countries: Language Revival, Language Removal, and Sociolinguistic Theory. International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism. Volume 11, Issue 3-4, pp. 275-314.
3. Conflicts and Conflict Resolution in the Caucasus
  • Broers, Laurence. 2009. David and Goliath and Georgians in the Kremlin: a post-colonial perspective on conflict in post-Soviet Georgia in Central Asian Survey 28 (2): 99-118.
  • Gerrits, André & Max Bader. 2015. Russian patronage over Abkhazia and South Ossetia: implications for conflict resolution in East European Politics 32 (3): 297-313.
  • Kaufman, Stuart. 2001. Modern Hatreds: The Symbolic Politics of Ethnic War. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press
  • Kaufmann, Chaim. 1996. Possible and Impossible Solutions to Ethnic Civil Wars in International Security 20 (4): 136-175.
  • Posen, Barry. 1993. The Security Dilemma and Ethnic Conflict in Survival 35 (1): 27-47.
  • Siroky, David. 2011. Explaining Secession (pp. 45-80) in Aleksandar Pavkovic & Peter Radan (eds.) The Ashgate Research Companion to Secession. Burlington: Ashgate.
  • Souleimanov, Emil. 2015. An ethnography of counterinsurgency: kadyrovtsy and Russia's policy of Chechenization in Post-Soviet Affairs 31 (2): 91-114.
  • Varshney, Ashutosh. 2007. Ethnicity and Ethnic Conflict (pp. 274-294) in Carles Boix & Susan Carol Stokes (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Politics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
4. The Caucasus Region: Causes and Consequences of Migration
  • Dermendzhieva, Zvezda. 2011. Emigration from the South Caucasus: who goes abroad and what are the economic implications? in Post-Communist Economies 23 (3): 377-398.
  • Holland, Edward. 2016. Economic Development and Subsidies in the North Caucasus in Problems of Post-Communism 63 (1): 50-61.
  • Judah, Ben. 2013. Russia’s Migration Crisis in Survival 55 (6): 123-131.
  • Kreiten, Irma. 2009. A colonial experiment in cleansing: the Russian conquest of Western Caucasus, 1856-65 in Journal of Genocide Research 11 (2/3): 213-241.
  • Lewis, Robert & Richard Rowland. 1977. East is West and West is East: Population Redistribution in the USSR and Its Impact on Society in The International Migration Review 11 (1): 3-29.
  • Martin, Terry. 1998. The Origins of Soviet Ethnic Cleansing in Journal of Modern History 70 (4): 813-861.
  • Polian, Pavel. 2004. Against Their Will: The History and Geography of Forced Migrations in the USSR. Budapest: Central European University Press.
  • Sammut, Dennis. 2001. Population Displacement in the Caucasus: An Overview in Central Asian Survey 20 (1): 55-62.

Course evaluation

All students are given the opportunity to comment the course at the end of the term in an online survey. A compilation of the results will be available on the university computer net. Students are also given the opportunity to offer oral feedback at various points earlier in the term.

Contact

The education is provided by the Faculty of Culture and Society at the Department of Global Political Studies.

Further information

GPSstudent - Malmö universitet,
Christofer Berglund, Course Coordinator
Phone: 040-6657812

Application

31 August 2020 - 17 January 2021 100% Distance (Malmö) Application code: mau-01151

National application round

Tuition fees

for non-EU students only

First instalment: 39000 SEK
Full tuition Fee: 39000 SEK

Open for late application

Apply

20 January 2020 - 07 June 2020 100% Distance (Malmö)

Tuition fees

for non-EU students only

First instalment: 38000 SEK
Full tuition Fee: 38000 SEK