The politics of austerity

Course Dates: 01/11/19 - 06/12/19
Time: 15:00 - 16:30
Location: KS - Keeley Street

Nine years of austerity has changed Britain. We ask questions such as why are 21% of UK citizens living poverty? We will discuss the need for austerity: political choice or economic necessity?


What is the course about?

14 million people (1 in 5 of the population) in the UK now live in poverty. 1.5 million are destitute - unable to afford even basic essentials for everyday life. Child poverty is predicted to be 40% by 2022 if the current programme of austerity is not drastically altered. The UN described the UK government as being in a 'state of denial' over the extent of the UK's current situation. The UN described austerity as inflicting 'great misery' on UK citizens.

In this course we will investigate why austerity was embarked upon, the policies that have been implemented, and the effects these have had to people at large. We will look at the economic, social and political implications of austerity.

What will we cover?

- The 2008 crash and its aftermath
- The economics and ideas of austerity
- The coalition and the implementation of austerity
- 'Living within our means': how austerity policies have progressed through the coalition, Conservative majority, and DUP-supported governments
- The impact of austerity on contemporary Britain: society, politics, crime and inequality
- 'Austerity is over', long live austerity: austerity in 2019.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Explain the economic ideas behind austerity programmes
- Analyse whether austerity programmes are effective in achieving their aims
- Recognise the impact of austerity programmes on different sectors of society.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

This is an introductory course. There is no previous knowledge required or expected. A good level of English will be required to keep up with the course. As with all of our courses curiosity, an open mind, and willingness to engage is more important than any particular skills.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

The class will be taught through a combination of tutor presentations and class discussion. There may be some in-class reading, and engagement with statistics and metrics.

There will be no work outside of class, although reading can be recommended for those who wish to look at the subject in further detail.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

There are no other costs.

A pen and paper, or laptop, to write notes may be useful.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

Check out our range of politics, economics and history courses on our website or in our prospectus.

Tutor Biographies
Benjamin Chwistek

Ben is the Coordinator for World History, Politics, Economics, Anthropology and Current Affairs. He studied Modern History at the University of London, obtaining a First Class Honours degree with a specialisation in Victorian Intellectual History. He then studied a Masters Degree in Political Philosophy at the University of York, where he graduated top of his class and obtained an award for his dissertation on the philosophies of history of Michel Foucault and Walter Benjamin. Ben went on to complete his PhD at the University of York, where he researched the subject of myth and violence in the work of Georges Sorel, Walter Benjamin and Carl Schmitt. For his PhD research, Ben received a scholarship from the WWI centenary ‘Legacies of War’ project. Ben has taught Philosophy, Politics and History from 1st year undergraduates to MA students at the universities of York, Leeds and Antwerp. He has also taught A Level History and Politics to sixth form students at a school in West London, and has taught English at a school in Thailand. Alongside this, he has spoken at conferences and events around the UK and Europe, primarily on topics relating to myth, violence, and democracy.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.

Book your place

Course Code: HPC01

Fri, day, 01 Nov - 06 Dec '19

Duration: 6 sessions (over 6 weeks)

Full fee: £89.00
Senior fee: £71.00
Concession: £39.00

Or call to enrol: 020 7831 7831

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Any questions?
or call 020 7492 2652

Please note: we offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. For more information visit our online Help Center. You can also visit the Information, Advice and Guidance drop-in service, open from 12 – 6.45, Monday to Friday.