Contemporary History (Culture and Mentalities)
Cod: 31034
Department: DCSG
Scientific area: History
Total working hours: 156
Total contact time: 15

This course unit analyses the most significant paradigms of social and cultural conscience as a result of the historical, political and institutional events from the 1800s to today. The course looks at the main ideas that were produced in the cultural, philosophical, artistic and scientific fields. In a transversal and diachronic manner, the course will attempt to recover the meaning of facts which lead to significant and conclusive trends in societies and cultures. Taking into consideration their complexity and ambivalence, it is important to understand the continuity and rupture, and the affirmation and negation in the construction of the human project and a common civilization, which grew out of, or was determined by, the deteriorations and divisions resulting from conflicts in today’s world.

In the end, students are expected to be able to
• understand the main paradigms of culture in the 20th century;
• understand the logical structure of mentality and culture of German romanticism and idealism, in the social function of renovation;
• integrate the combining powers of social expression in the are of cultural and scientific production, identifying also the scientific and technological revolutions as well as the challenges they pose;
• distinguish the socio-economic policies in their relations with cultural and ideological productions;
• understand the historical role of the temporal function of ideas and their repercussions in the social dynamics of the 20th century;
• assess critically the complexities of the ambivalences of cultural and social movements in relation to the construction of a common civilization.

1. Political facts and the culture of the elites
1.1 The presence of German romanticism and idealism
1.2 Journalism and literature. Impact of the Soviet revolution. Social repercussions
1.3 Art and literature. New arts emerging from new techniques. Main aesthetic trends
2. New Scientific Spirit. Positivism. Scientism. The crisis of science and the inefficacies of determinism. The discovery of the macrocosmos. New human challenges and new conceptions of time, the discovery of the unconscious
3. Europe and the traumatic effects of the First and Second World Wars. Concepts of resistance and survival
3.1 The ethical and axiological crisis. The world humanitarian organizations in Europe. Hedonistic vs. humanitarian conscience
3.2 Knowledge production of the common sense. Mass education and mass culture
3.3 Main trends of thought
3.4 Aesthetic trends
3.5 Social movements
4. Globalisation and the beginning of the Information Age. Networked society

Palmovski, Jan., Historia Universal del Siglo XX, ed. Complutense. Madrid, 1980.
Laffont, R., Histoire de l’ Humanité - Histoire du Developpement Culturel et Scientific de l`Humanité. UNESCO. Paris, 1969.
Rioux, J. P.; Sirinelli, J.F., Para uma História Cultural, ed. Estampa. Lisboa, 1998.
Rémond, René, Introdução à História do Nosso Tempo, ed.Gradiva. Lisboa, 1994.
Logos. Enciclopédia Luso-Brasileira de Filosofia. Editorial Verbo. Lisboa, 1992.

Online learning with continuous supervision favoring asynchronous communication (Moodle platform).
Students have to perform the tasks requested by the teacher: essays, critical recensions, reports, protocols, etc. All works will be evaluated and/or classified.

Continuous assessment is privileged: 2 or 3 digital written documents (e-folios) during the semester (40%) and a presence-based final exam (p-folio) in the end of the semester (60%).
In due time, students can alternatively choose to perform one final presence-based exam (100%).

Students are required to have access to a computer with Internet connection and an e-mail address as well as to have computer literacy from the user perspective.