Taking Early Modern History enables you to investigate some of the most dramatic events, issues and personalities from European and British history. The course focuses on the 16th and 17th centuries – a period of great change and conflict.
In Year 1 we will develop a detailed understanding of the 17th Century revolution in Britain by focusing on Charles 1st and the origins and course of the Civil Wars, as well as perhaps the most controversial period in our history – our period as a republic under Oliver Cromwell and the restoration of the monarchy under Charles 2nd. You will also trace the theme of revolution through to 18th Century France.
In the second year you will investigate the phenomenon of the witch hunts in Europe and North America. To what extent was this the result of religious changes during the Reformation and why were the majority of victims women, and why did the hunts come to an end?
- The causes of the Civil Wars and the character of Charles 1st
- The growth of political and social radicalism e.g. the levellers
- From Cromwell and the Republic to the Restoration
- How transformative was the French revolution?
- Why did a new French constitution emerge?
- The theological causes of the witch craze – why did people believe in witches?
- The variation in witch persecution between different countries
- How historians interpret the causes of the witch craze
- Coursework: You choose either a question derived from one of the exam topics (Modern or Early Modern) or choose a completely new topic on the Renaissance or causes of the American Civil War. The choice is yours.
Studied at Varndean College: Psychology, English Language, History (2012-2014)
Progression: History, Sheffield University
Holly went on to study BA History at Sheffield University and graduated in 2018 with a 1st. She is currently working at the University undertaking administration and working with the public engagement team and hopes to continue this role but move into more direct support for students.
Holly says: "My advice for any student choosing their A Levels would be to pick what subjects you enjoy, not what subjects you feel you should be doing. There's always support and advice available when you need it and never be afraid to ask for help!"