This course is discontinued

ENG2576 – USA and the World: Contemporary American Foreign Policy

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

Since 1945 the United States has been a powerful shaping force in the world - both political and economic. It has been both a participant in the construction of an international society and arguably the world's most powerful nation- state-commanding substantial military and political resources on its own.

This course examines the recent history of American foreign policy and the debate among foreign policy experts in the USA over how to understand and shape the post-Cold War world. Is the ideal of a peaceful and cooperative international order envisioned in the founding of the UN in 1945 and the exercise of great power politics by the United States simply incompatible?

Learning outcome

To think critically about the role of the USA in world affairs. To develop the skill of critically assessing ideas in the light of events.


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Formal prerequisite knowledge

Admission to the course is required.

Recommended previous knowledge

The course assumes a good proficiency in written and oral English

Overlapping courses

This course overlaps with ENG2574(cancelled course) and NORAM4574 – USA and the World: Contemporary American Foreign Policy (discontinued).


The course is taught throughout the semester with 2 hours per week, 28 hours in all. There is a mid-term break (one week in autumn term, two weeks in spring term) during which the students are expected to prepare obligatory assignments (see below) and otherwise study on their own. The students are supposed to attend the course regularly.


At the end of the course there will be a two-hour written in-class exam (50%). In addition, the students must write an essay (5 standard pages) (50%). Marks are given on a scale from A to E for pass and F for fail. To pass the course you must pass both written assignments.

Facts about this course



Teaching language