SubjectsSubjects(version: 945)
Course, academic year 2022/2023
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Area Studies: Theory and Methodology - JTM047
Title: Area Studies: Theory and Methodology
Czech title: Teritoriální studia: teorie a metodologie
Guaranteed by: Department of Russian and East European Studies (23-KRVS)
Faculty: Faculty of Social Sciences
Actual: from 2022 to 2022
Semester: winter
E-Credits: 6
Examination process: winter s.:
Hours per week, examination: winter s.:0/2, Ex [HT]
Capacity: unknown / unknown (15)
Min. number of students: unlimited
4EU+: no
Virtual mobility / capacity: no
State of the course: taught
Language: English
Teaching methods: full-time
Teaching methods: full-time
Note: course can be enrolled in outside the study plan
enabled for web enrollment
Guarantor: PhDr. Mgr. Kryštof Přemysl Kozák, Ph.D.
Mgr. Zachary Colin Lavengood
Teacher(s): Mgr. Zachary Colin Lavengood
Class: Courses for incoming students
Is pre-requisite for: JTM079, JTM049
Last update: PhDr. Mgr. Kryštof Přemysl Kozák, Ph.D. (19.09.2023)
The course introduces Area Studies and focuses on theoretical as well as methodological approaches to the subject. The critical dichotomy between area specific knowledge and general theory will be highlighted. Practical implications of area studies research will be covered throughout the class as well.
Aim of the course
Last update: PhDr. Mgr. Kryštof Přemysl Kozák, Ph.D. (19.09.2023)

The goal of the course is for the students to comprehend basic approaches in Area Studies including relevant theories and methodologies. The students shall apply acquired knowledge to address current issues as well as to their own research projects.

Last update: PhDr. Mgr. Kryštof Přemysl Kozák, Ph.D. (19.09.2023)

Literature for this course is located in the 'files' section above and can be downloaded by the student. Reading the weekly literature is mandatory and will make up part of the final exam. List of required readings is in the syllabus section.

Teaching methods
Last update: PhDr. Mgr. Kryštof Přemysl Kozák, Ph.D. (19.09.2023)

The course method is based on close readings of mandatory texts and subsequent class discussion of key ideas and concepts. Students are also required to have an in-class presentation relevant to the theme of the course.

Requirements to the exam
Last update: Mgr. Zachary Colin Lavengood (22.01.2024)

Each student shall have a 10 minute presentation (20% of the grade), write a paper based on the presentation or the topic of the class (30% of the grade, minimum 12 600 characters with spaces) and shall write a final exam (50% of the grade). The exam shall cover the mandatory readings and lectures from the classes. 

 Please fill in this google sheet with your name and presentation/paper topic before week 8: 

Research paper guidelines


  1. The topic should be tied to a specific geographic location. Relevant background information connecting knowledge from course classes should lead to a theoretically grounded research question. This question shall be answered using proper methods of inquiry.  If you want to write about other topic relevant for Area studies, contact the instructor.

  2. Minimum length is 12 600 characters with spaces (approximately 7 pages double space), plus footnotes and bibliography of at least 10 titles (including relevant electronic sources).

  3. The paper should present a well-developed thesis, supported by evidence from primary and secondary sources.

  4. It should also demonstrate an understanding of the scholarship on the topic—that is, the paper itself must incorporate in the text and notes an adequate discussion of the scholarly works on the subject.

  5. For footnotes and references, follow this easy-to-use guide based on Chicago Manual of Style,

  6. Be sure to incorporate research from scholarly journals and books, not just accidental Google searches.

  7. Helpful general guidelines for writing research papers are for example at:

    Papers should be submitted to Turnitin, the class ID is 40605992 Enrollment key: abc123

    DUE DATE FOR FINAL PAPER: January 30th, 2024, via Turnitin

    What you need to do in order to succeed:


  • think critically about a topic and the sources necessary to study and limit that topic

  • combine information and ideas into a focused, organized, supported argument

  • write a grammatical, stylistic, mechanically correct essay

  • document and list sources accurately and usefully


 Final Exam Guidelines

Specific dates for final exams will be announced in early December. Students need to sign up for the exam in the SIS system.

The final exam will cover the readings and lecture subjects from the course.


The grading shall be as follows:

  • 91% and more   =>         A
  • 81-90%             =>            B
  • 71-80%             =>            C
  • 61-70%             =>            D
  • 51-60%             =>            E
  • 0-50%                =>           F

For instance, an overall result of 50.5% corresponds to the grade E (after rounding up to the full percentage).

  1. Basic interpretation of A-F grading scale:
  • A – excellent (outstanding performance with only minor mistakes)
  • B – very good (above average performance with some mistakes)
  • C – good (overall good performance with a number of notable mistakes)
  • D – satisfactory (acceptable performance with significant mistakes)
  • E – sufficient (performance fulfils only minimum criteria)
  • F – insufficient/failed (more effort needs to be made).


Based on the Dean's Measure 20/2019:

Last update: PhDr. Mgr. Kryštof Přemysl Kozák, Ph.D. (17.10.2023)

Week 1— Course introduction, syllabus KK/ZL 3.10.2023


Week 2 — What is Area Studies? KK 10.10.2023

Szanton, David L., The Politics of Knowledge: Area Studies and the Disciplines, University of California Press, 2004. Introduction.


Week 3 — World-systems analysis and area studies ZL 17.10.2023

World-systems analysis - Immanuel Wallerstein (2013)

The Modern World-System as a Capitalist World Economy - Immanuel Wallerstein 2004 (Chapter 2)


Week 4 – Conducting Area Studies Research 24.10.2023

Wayne C. Booth, Gregory G. Colomb, Joseph M. Williams: The Craft of Research. University of Chicago Press, 2005. (Part I, pp. 1-15, 35-72)

David E. McNabb: Research Methods for Political Science, M.E.Sharpe, New York, 2004 (pp. 13-33, 67-78).

Week 5— Week 5: Periphery, Semi-periphery, and Core in the Modern World-system ZL 31.10.2023

Rise And Demise: Comparing World Systems - Christopher Chase-dunn, Thomas D Hall 79-98 (1997)


Week 6 — Physical geography and Area Studies KK 7.11.2023

Ricardo Hausmann: Prisoners of Geography. Foreign Policy, January, 1999.


Week 7— Current issues through Area Studies: Poverty & Development ZL 14.11.2023

A framework for understanding poverty -Benjamin Curtis and Serena Cosgrove (p.1-23)


The Slum - Al Jazzera Pick at least one episode to watch


Week 8 — Identity and Area Studies KK 21.11.2023

Benedict Anderson: Fictional Communities, Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism, Verso, 1991, Introduction (pp.1-9)

Benedict Anderson: Fictional Communities, Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism, Verso, 1991, The Origins of National Consciousness (pp. 37-47)


Week 9: Current Issues through Area Studies: Climate Change and Migration ZL - 28.11.2023

Report on the Impact of Climate Change on Migration - 2021 (Sections I & II)


Week 10: Clash of Civilizations? KK

Samuel Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations, in: Gearóid Ó Tuathail, Simon Dalby and Paul Routledge: The Geopolitics Reader, 2nd Edition, Routledge, 2006. - 5.12.2023

Edward Said: Reply to Huntington, in: Gearóid Ó Tuathail, Simon Dalby and Paul Routledge: The Geopolitics Reader, 2nd Edition, Routledge, 2006.


Week 11 — Student Presentations KK/ZL - 12.12.2023


Week 12 – Student Presentations KK/ZL - 19.12.2023


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