Learn about the complex and controversial legacy of Captain James Cook.
2018 marked the 250th anniversary of the departure of the Endeavour for Tahiti under the command of Captain James Cook. But, as the defacing of his statues in Australia suggests, not everyone sees the explorer’s legacy in a positive light.
In this course you’ll learn about the scientific ambition and historical context of the journeys undertaken by Cook, uncovering the complex relationships between Europeans and Pacific Islanders. You’ll also consider the impact of these voyages on our modern world and how various communities and societies relate differently to this legacy.
What topics will you cover?
Week 1 - Introduction to the voyages and the problematic legacies of Captain James Cook and how these are viewed in the Pacific and beyond.
Week 2 - How do we use critical and historical enquiry skills to examine and question the historical record of Captain Cook and the impacts of these voyages?
Week 3 - How Cook’s death lead to a turning point in Britain’s policy and an examination of colonialisation in the Pacific and Australia.
Week 4 - The complexities around memorialisation in the 21st century through the legacy of Captain James Cook.
Week 5 - The broader discussions around memorialisation in public spaces.
When would you like to start?
Most FutureLearn courses run multiple times. Every run of a course has a set start date but you can join it and work through it after it starts. Find out more
Who is the course for?
This course is suitable for historians and students looking to broaden their knowledge. It would also appeal to anyone with an interest in museum studies, or those interested in investigating colonialism and its legacies.
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