ATS2110 - Slavery: A history - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit



Professor David Garrioch

Not offered in 2017


Slavery has existed since ancient times and has been used in societies as diverse as Ancient Rome and modern India, medieval Europe and nineteenth-century America. It still exists, in various forms, today. The unit investigates the meaning and experience of enslavement in a range of historical contexts. How and why have people been enslaved and what did it mean to live in slavery? How might slaves understand and achieve their freedom? Why have so many societies used slave labour? In recent times, attitudes to enslavement have changed, leading to campaigns against slavery in modern times: why did this happen, and to what extent have these campaigns been successful?


On successful completion of this unit, students will:

  1. have acquired appropriate bibliographical skills, including critical use and analysis of digital and online material
  2. Be able to identify the historical problems and issues addressed in secondary sources, both written and online
  3. Demonstrate a capacity for independent thought and reflection and for constructing evidence-based arguments in their writing and verbal participation
  4. Demonstrate oral and written skills in using a variety of primary and secondary sources
  5. Show that they can use visual sources for historical analysis
  6. Have gained a broad understanding of the long history of slavery
  7. Be aware of several different approaches to the interpretation of history
  8. Have reflected on the different ways in which experience is historically constructed


Within semester assessment: 70% + Exam: 30%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


Twelve credit points of first-year Arts units.