The Struggle for the Persian Gulf, 1945-2003
This information is for the 2013/14 session.
Mr Roham Alvandi E310
This course is available on the BA in History and BSc in International Relations and History. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit and to General Course students.
This course is capped at 30 students.
This course examines the international history of the Persian Gulf as an ongoing struggle among external powers and local actors for regional supremacy. Through the use of documentary primary sources, the course covers the history of this struggle for mastery in the Gulf in three stages. It begins with the decline of the British Empire and the rise of American power in the Gulf after the Second World War, in the face of Arab and Iranian nationalism. It then examines the long era of intense regional competition for primacy between Iran and Iraq, with particular reference to the Cold War and the 1979 Iranian Revolution. Finally, the course turns to the renewed Anglo-American military intervention in the Gulf since 1991 that continues until today. As a List B paper, the course makes extensive use of primary sources as part of the weekly reading assignments. These will include government documents, public statements, diaries, and memoirs. These primary sources will all be in English and will all be available on Moodle for students to access. Key topics covered in the course include: nationalism in Mussadiq's Iran and Qasim's Iraq; the Arab Cold War and the civil war in Yemen; the Cold War politics of reform in Mohammad Reza Shah's Iran and King Faisal's Saudi Arabia; the British withdrawal from the Persian Gulf between 1968 and 1971; Nixon and Kissinger in the Persian Gulf; the secret war between Iran and Iraq in Kurdistan from 1972 to 1975; the rise of OPEC and the 1973/74 energy crisis; the 1979 Iranian Revolution; the Iran-Iraq War of 1980 to 1988; the Persian Gulf War of 1991; the rise and fall of Iranian-American détente under Khatami; Saudi Arabia and the United States before and after 9/11; and the 2003 Anglo-American invasion of Iraq
20 hours of seminars in the MT. 20 hours of seminars in the LT. 4 hours of seminars in the ST.
Students will be required to write two conventional essays of 2000 words and one set of gobbet answers during MT and LT; and one timed mock exam in ST.
Ervand Abrahamian, A History of Modern Iran (Cambridge University Press, 2008); Glen Balfour-Paul, The End of Empire in the Middle East: Britain's Relinquishment of Power in Her Last Three Dependencies (Cambridge University Press, 1991); Shahram Chubin and Charles Tripp, Iran and Iraq at War (I.B. Tauris, 1988); W. Taylor Fain, American Ascendance and British Retreat in the Persian Gulf Region (Palgrave Macmillllan, 2008); F. Gregory Gause III, The International Relations of the Persian Gulf (Cambridge University Press, 2010); Madawi Al-Rasheed, A History of Saudi Arabia (Cambridge University Press, 2002); Charles Tripp, A History of Iraq, Third Edition (Cambridge University Press, 2007); Daniel Yergin, The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money, and Power (Simon & Schuster, 1993).
Exam (100%, duration: 3 hours) in the main exam period.
Department: International History
Total students 2012/13: 38
Average class size 2012/13: 13
Value: One Unit
- Team working
- Problem solving
- Application of information skills
- Specialist skills