SubjectsSubjects(version: 916)
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
Virtual mobility / capacity: no
State of the course: taught
Language: English
Teaching methods: full-time
Note: course can be enrolled in outside the study plan
enabled for web enrollment
Guarantor: PhDr. Mgr. Kryštof 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 Kozák, Ph.D. (19.09.2022)
The course introduces Area Studies and focuses on theoretical as well as methodological approaches to the subject. Practical implications of area studies research will be covered throughout the class as well.
Aim of the course
Last update: PhDr. Mgr. Kryštof Kozák, Ph.D. (19.09.2022)

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 current issues as well as to their own research projects.

Last update: PhDr. Mgr. Kryštof Kozák, Ph.D. (19.09.2022)

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. 

Teaching methods
Last update: PhDr. Mgr. Kryštof Kozák, Ph.D. (19.09.2022)

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

Requirements to the exam
Last update: PhDr. Mgr. Kryštof Kozák, Ph.D. (10.01.2023)

Each student shall have a 10-15 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 36143662 Enrollment key: abc123

    Due date for the papers is January 20, 2023

    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

The final exam will be held on 11.1., 12.1. and 13.1. Please sign up for your exam date here:

The final exam will cover the readings and lecture subjects from the course. Students will be emailed the exam questions at noon the exam and must submit them by midnight. Please follow the exam directions as given. Final exams should be submitted to the same Turnitin class as is used for the final papers. 


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 Kozák, Ph.D. (28.11.2022)

Week 1— Course introduction, syllabus KK/ZL


Week 2 — What is Area Studies? KK

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

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

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


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

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


Week 6 — Physical geography and Area Studies KK

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


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

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

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 - 28.11.2022

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. - 6.12.2022

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 - 13.12.2022


Week 12 – Student Presentations KK/ZL - 20.12.2022


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