70 Years that Transformed British Politics, 1637-1707

Ref: C3741351

in 70 years the British political world is turned upside down. One King is publicly executed and his second son flees into exile after the last successful foreign invasion of these isles. By the end of this period, Parliament is politically dominant, Protestantism is in the ascendancy, Ireland is a colony and a new political entity - Britain - has been created. None of this was inevitable. So whilst this course looks at what happened and why, it also examines movements that did not succeed. The political radicals - Levellers, Diggers- the messianic religious groups - the Ranters and Shakers - and try and see them in their own light. Whilst these 70 years are amongst the important decades in British history, dynamism is not limited to politics. With great literature - Paradise Lost, Pilgrim's Progress, Restoration comedies - pioneering science - Newton, Hooke, Royal Society - and fascinating insight into day to day life - Pepys Diaries,-this is history that resonates down the ages.

Additional information about this course


Course aim

Within 70 years (1637-1707) the politics of Britain is transformed and the consequences echo down succeeding centuries. This course explains how and why this happened. Time for discussion.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Understand how political power changed from the beginning to the end of this period
  • Recognise the alternative scenarios that might have come about.
  • Understand how the differing histories of Scotland, Ireland, England and Wales interact with each other in this period.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required
  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course

Download full Course information sheet

70 Years that Transformed British Politics, 1637-1707


You can if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2017
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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