YR 9 ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES
ST. Edward’s College, Malta
Teacher: Mr Simon Vincenti
Book Two February March 2012
TOPICS - 8. Society, 9. Socialisation – Norms and Values,
10. Institutions 11. Education for National and Global Citizenship
12. Politics and Economics
Parent/Teacher/student – Comment Box
NAME: HOUSE: SET:
Homework, Test, Credits Social Studies Monitoring Grid
Homework Comment Date Mark Parent’s
8.1 What is society?
8.2 Characteristics of societies.
8.3 Ingredients of society.
9. SOCIALISATION – VALUES & NORMS.
9.2 Norms & behaviour.
9.4 Sanctions – positive & negative.
9.5 Primary & secondary socialisation.
10.1 What are Institutions?
10.2 The Family in Traditional & Contemporary Society.
10.4 The Government as an Institution.
10.6 The Media as an Institution.
10.8 The Church as an Institution.
10.10 Education as an Institution.
11. EDUCATION FOR NATIONAL AND GLOCAL CITIZENSHIP.
11.1 Education and citizenship.
11.3 Citizenship and Democracy.
12. POLITICS & ECONOMICS.
12.1 Malta’s contribution to peace in Europe & the Mediterranean and
Malta’s political & economic relations with other countries.
Geography & Social Studies Components of SEC Environmental Studies YR 9
1 Weather & climate
2 Rocks & soil
3 Water Supply
6 Earthquakes & volcanoes
7 Energy resources
9 Socialisation - Values & norms
11 Education for National & Global Citizenship
12 Politics & economics
YEAR 10 ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES SCHEME OF WORK
13 Agricultural landuse
14 Fishing, Aquaculture & Quarrying
17 Conservation & Protecting flora & fauna
18 Waste management
19 Population and Settlement
20 Quality of Life
21 Fortress Economy
YEAR 11 ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES SCHEME OF WORK
22 Manufacturing Industries
26 Politics and Democracy – Managing the Nation
27 REVISION PROGRAMME
ACADEMIC GRADE AND EFFORT EXAMPLES
ACADEMIC GRADE & EFFORT EXPLANATION
B+3 Working hard & achieving good marks
C-3 Working hard, achieving marks 35%
D0 No effort, marks around 25%
Social Studies: Lesson 1
1. To look at different people’s views on society.
2. To identify different models of society.
3. To understand what is meant by the consensus and conflict models.
TOPIC 8. SOCIETY
8.1. What is Society?
What do you think the word ‘society’ means. In pairs, with your neighbour
ask each other what you think it means. Write down a sentence or two
below with your answer.
Is your answer similar to this – “A society is a group of people with
common aims and goals”?
Draw a sketch in the space below of what you think is society, using any
or all of the following: boxes, triangles, arrows, circles, squares,
rectangles, lines, models, objects, machines, networks etc., etc.
There are different societies, in different parts of the world, and these
societies differ over time. Just think how Maltese society has changed
from the time of the Knights to today?
Different people may belong to the same society, but have different
values, beliefs and ideas from your own.
The same person living in the same society may see society differently as
he grows older and has different experiences (e.g. birth of a child, death
of parents, promotion, dismissal from a job etc.).
Society can be seen in different ways, for example:
o As circles
o As networks or systems
o As machines or as a living being
o As a hierarchy
1. Circular uniform society
This represents unity, harmony and consensus, i.e. one big happy family,
with members working together for one common interest.
2. Circular sub-group society
Here there may be various different groups within society, with values
and with some disagreement, though within this society certain
fundamental and basic features are accepted by one and all.
3. Circular deviant society
Here the majority may accept the ‘normal’ way to behave, but other,
usually smaller groups, known as sub-groups, strongly disagree with the
larger groups norms of behaviour and are therefore seen as different
and therefore deviant, as they are not fully integrated into society.
AS NETWORKS OR SYSTEMS
The basic idea here is that society has many parts, which all work
together towards a common goal, with each part responsible for a set of
aims, which are linked together through communication and interacting
with each other.
FILL IN THE BOXES FOR A NETWORK SOCIETY
THE MACHINE OR ORGANIC MODEL
Here society is seen as a motor, or a human body, with all these parts
working together to achieve a common objective.
THE BRAIN MODEL
Another variation. Here there is in existence a central brain which co-
ordinates and directs the system to carry out essential tasks that are
required if a society is to exist. This brain can be seen as central
All these models above suggest that these societies are in harmony.
BUT CONFLICT IS PRESENT IN SOCIETY.
Here society is made up different groups of people struggling for power
and control over each other and over wealth and resources. Society is not
in harmony; there is little consensus between sub-groups. Society is seen
as lacking consensus and consisting of sub-groups in a huge struggle.
People living in a conflict society may believe there is a hierarchy with
the ‘haves’ on top and the ‘have nots’ at the bottom.
Social Studies; Lesson 2
1. To identify the different characteristics of society.
2. To understand the different characteristics of society – namely:
8.2. Characteristics of societies.
What are the characteristics of the above societies? Some societies may
o Consensus and harmony
BUT DO ALL SOCIETIES HAVE TO BE LIKE THIS?
Imagine that we can create our own society from the beginning, from
scratch. Can we come up with something new or not?
Imagine we are on a rugby tour to New Zealand as part of an under 18
and senior Maltese rugby tour, with both male and female rugby teams.
We have different ages, some young, others older. The occupations vary
from students to professionals and also some industrial workers. Among
us are some Protestants, as well as Muslims, Catholics and atheists. Also
many of us don’t know more that a few of the other people. In total we
are around 200 people.
Somewhere over the Pacific Ocean disaster strikes! The plane is hit by
lightening, we loose all our navigational equipment and the plane crashes
onto a deserted island in the middle of no-where.
You are now a new society. What decisions, if any are you (collectively,
individually or on a sub-group basis) to make.
Think of some of the decisions that you will have to make.
See the list below, did you include some of these headings and what
do they mean?:
o Politics – Who will lead? Who will follow? Who will be given
o Economics – How will we provide for ourselves?
o Education – _________________________________________
o Order and justice – ___________________________________
o Health – ___________________________________________
o Environmental issues – _________________________________
What would happen if we did not organise everyone & everybody did
whatever they liked and went their own ways?
Perhaps the young & old would die first; next people or groups would
argue about the control of key resources, such as fresh water, wood and
food. Soon disputes would involve the use of violence and force. Gangs
would become the dominant force on the island and this society would
soon tear itself apart.
Without a society based upon the common interests of its members we
cannot live in harmony.
‘Without society, men and women become beasts and the ‘Law of the
Jungle’ – the survival of the fittest will occur’.
8.3. The characteristics of society.
This example also shows us that and identifies four main ingredients of
all societies. Whilst all societies are different from one another, they all
have some common basic characteristics. These are:
o And diversity
A unified and stable society is a successful society. People may be
different; yet they have a number of common aims and unifying features
that allow them to live together in relative harmony. Individuals and/or
groups may hold different views, religion, culture and customs, however
they all conform to some or many deep-seated set of rules and customs
that characterises their particular society. Shared characteristics may
language – history – traditions – values – money – institutions – citizenship –
peoples general aims in life.
Every society needs to have organisation in order to exist. Individuals
and groups must operate within some sort of framework. This framework
often takes the form of a structure (i.e. St Edwards). This structure co-
ordinates the actions of people (teachers and students at SEC) and
guarantees certain minimum standards.
Governments ensure that these organisations operate within the
interests of society as a whole and usually assume the responsibility for
providing those facilities that make social life possible (education, law
Governments make laws and regulations, on behalf of their citizens, which
define and points out the rights and duties of the members of their
From government right down to the smallest of organisations (a rugby
club perhaps), there are similarities in their set-up. For example:
o There is the appointment or election of organisers to run the
o There is the running (administration) of the club (or societies)
property, equipment and assets (all that they own which has value).
o There are people responsible for raising money and also
expenditure (how money is spent).
o There are regulations about how decisions can be made and what
should be done (i.e. the purpose of the organisation).
A well organised and united team is not enough if the team never gets
together and does not communicate (talk) to each other.
Without effective (good) communication, unity and organisation are
useless. Meeting different people, sharing ideas, exchanging news and
opinions are all about social interaction (communication between people).
Social interactions are vital in order for society to run smoothly.
To help communication happen we have:
o A common culture and language(s) amongst the members of society.
o An effective network of newspapers, television and radio stations
as a means for mass communication.
o Numerous forms of private communication such as the phone,
email, meetings, conversations, circulars, books, music, drama and
In a society there must be space for people to express (voice) their
disagreement, safely and honourably. It is important for society to evolve
(change or mature) and to reflect the needs and wants of its members.
An example of this was the whole question of Malta’s membership of the
EU. Maltese society has had to adapt and change to accommodate the
new rules and regulations of the EU.*
*[the EU does has safeguards to guarantee diversity within the EU e.g.
Maltese is recognised as one of the official EU languages.]
There are many examples of a society which punishes people for being
different, such societies are repressive society (a society which curbs or
quashes individual views). Such a society will only last for a limited time
because this society will resist all change and turn against its own
members. This can be seen in many ex-communist Eastern European
countries when the people as a whole rose up against the government.
A well-balanced society is one which tolerates a fair amount of
disagreement amongst its members. This allows for a certain amount of
change over time to occur within a society and thus safeguards stability
Therefore societies all have some common basic characteristics. These
Unity Communication Organisation And diversity
1. Which of the following is the best explanation of a Society?
a) a crowd of people b) a community
c) passengers on an aircraft d) shoppers in a queue
2. Which of the following is the first and smallest social unit that humans
a) the country b) the band club
c) the family d) a group of friends
3. Which subject involves the use and exercise of power?
a) economics b) history
c) geography d) politics
4. People, who are members of the same society often, have different
opinions on important issues. In your opinion which statement is likely to
be the most likely option?
a) This normally happens and is often healthy in society.
b) The few people with the different opinion must leave that
c) The few people with the different opinion must be prepared to
change & accept the majority’s opinion.
d) The strongest group’s opinion should be adopted by all.
5. Which are the four general characteristics, which one should find in any
6. Is it dangerous when members of the same Society do not share the
YOU MUST EXPLAIN YOUR ANSWER & GIVE AN EXAMPLE
7. Remember there are no right or wrong models.
For the three models (harmony, systems, conflict) can you give ONE more
examples of how:
Maltese Society supports each of these three basic models below:
Harmony Respect for law and order
Systems Different government departments
8. ‘All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts ……’
From As You Like It by William Shakespeare
(i) To what extent is living in Society like taking part in a play? Explain
(ii) To what extent are we all actors in a play? Explain your answer.
(iii) Has the play been written for us OR BY US? What are your views?
Support your opinion with reasons.
9. From 1 Letter of St Paul to the Corinthians
‘The body is whole & has many parts, & the different parts of the body,
in spite of their differences, make up one unified body.
Where the foot to declare, “Since I am not an arm, I am not part of the
body”, would that mean that the foot is outcast? And were the ear to
state, “Since I am not an eye, I am not part of the body”, would that
mean the ear is expelled from the body?
If the body consisted of an eye, how would it enjoy the sense of hearing?
And if the whole body consisted of an ear, how would it enjoy the sense
of smell? The eye cannot scold the arm, saying: “Begone! I don’t need
you”. Therefore, there shall not be any conflict between the different
parts of the same body, but all parts shall be concerned with each other’s
welfare; if one of the parts suffers, all will suffer; if a part is praised, all
will share that praise’.
(i) Is the above extract a fair interpretation of how Society works and
hangs together? Give reasons for your answer.
(ii) Does it correspond to the harmony, systems or conflict models? Why?
10. Play ‘The Logical Song’ by Supertramp – look at the lyrics below:
Supertramp - The Logical Song
When I was young, it seemed that life was so wonderful,
A miracle, oh it was beautiful, magical.
And all the birds in the trees, well they’d be singing so happily,
Joyfully, playfully watching me.
But then they send me away to teach me how to be sensible,
Logical, responsible, practical.
And they showed me a world where I could be so dependable,
Clinical, intellectual, cynical.
There are times when all the worlds asleep,
The questions run too deep
For such a simple man.
Won’t you please, please tell me what we’ve learned
I know it sounds absurd
But please tell me who I am.
Now watch what you say or they’ll be calling you a radical,
Liberal, fanatical, criminal.
Won’t you sign up your name, wed like to feel you’re
Acceptable, respectable, presentable, a vegetable!
At night, when all the worlds asleep,
The questions run so deep
For such a simple man.
Won’t you please, please tell me what we’ve learned
I know it sounds absurd
But please tell me who I am.
Do you think the lyrics are a valid criticism of the socialisation process?
Why – give reasons?
Social Studies: Lesson 3
1. To understand what the term socialisation means.
2. To identify different situations and places where socialisation takes place.
3. To learn what is meant by the terms “Norms” and “Values”
TOPIC 9. SOCIALIZATION –VALUES & NORMS
Being alone for long periods of time in most societies is a form of human
punishment. Put simply human beings are social beings. For most of us it
is only through others that we feel fulfilled – a mother, friend, brother.
Learning our way in Society – learning the general rules of behaviour, the
code of conduct within society – is one important aspect of socialisation.
Modern society makes us interdependent – we depend on each other for
practically all our needs and requirements.
Socialisation is the process whereby people learn the norms and
values of their society
The manner in which people come together and interact in social
circumstances – known as social interaction – is a complex process.
9.2. Norms & behaviour.
When individuals meet other people and speak to each other a
relationship occurs and they need to have a clear understanding about
how they are to behave and act to each other.
How you react to your father should be different to how you go react
with your girlfriend! Different societies have different norms or
patterns of behaviour, which people are expected to follow.
When tourists come to our country sometimes they don’t know how to
behave properly. This is because we have been socialised into the key
meanings and basic beliefs of the Islands – the social values – and
behavioural patterns of Maltese Society,
Socialisation therefore refers to a process whereby we begin to
understand of the rules of social interaction within our social group or
community or society.
Human beings are social beings. What does this mean?
Explain what is meant by socialisation.
Do we need others to feel happy or fulfilled or can we exist in isolation or
being alone? Give a few reasons for your answer.
List 3 situations or places where social interaction takes place.
Social Studies: Lesson 4
1. To learn what are meant by the terms positive and negative sanctions.
2. To understand what is meant by the phrases primary socialisation and
9.4. Sanctions – positive & negative.
Socialisation is strengthened by rewards and punishments.
o Positive sanctions involve praise, gifts, and certificates and are
given when individuals display the correct behaviour.
o Negative sanctions involve detention, fines, suspension, and
expulsion and are given when individuals show incorrect or
undesirable displays of behaviour.
9.5. Primary & secondary socialisation.
Early socialisation occurs in the family unit (when we are babies) and is
known as primary socialisation.
Secondary socialisation includes teachers, relatives and neighbours, as
well as friends. Friends form a social group known as a peer group and
during teenage years this peer-group can become very important as a
socialising agent and greatly affects how we treat each other.
We therefore are taught from cradle to grave how to behave. We are
taught basic social skills (how to read and write), language and traditions
in the hope that we will become a valid part of out the society that we
Socialisation therefore refers to an understanding of the rules of social
interaction within your social group or community or society. In order to
socialize in an acceptable way we must learn:
o The ability to understand & communicate in a particular language.
o The learning & training in a set of key social skills.
What are norms?
Explain how norms can be different depending on the situation or
company that you are in.
Use the example when you meet different people.
Name the two different people that you often meet and describe the
different ways you treat them when you meet.
A. How you meet person ‘A’ …..
B. How you meet person ‘B’ …..
What therefore is Socialisation? Give an example.
Socialisation is …
Within the society of St Edward’s College give two examples of positive
sanctions and two examples of negative sanctions.
Positive: (i) (ii)
Negative: (i) (ii)
What do you think are the purpose of the sanctions that you listed?
What are peer groups? What peer groups are you in?
Which of the following is very important to enable social interaction to
a) a motor car b) a nice dress
c) a common language d) a DVD
Which social agents are usually responsible for primary socialisation?
a) the parents b) the postman
c) The Headmaster d) your friends
Which of the following patterns of behaviour are learnt through
a) how to breathe b) how to sleep
c) how to shake hands and greet someone d) how to blink
The story of Robinson Crusoe, by Daniel Defoe and based on the true
story of Alexander Selkirk, a shipwrecked sailor who spent many years
living alone on a desert island. Imagine at the early age of ten you had the
same experience and that you were only rescued after a further ten
years when you were twenty.
Imagine the social problems, concerning your behaviour, that you
would have say going to dinner with 15 long lost school friends. List
some of these problems that you would face during the dinner:
Social Studies: Lesson 5
1. To understand the main purposes of institutions.
2. To know various examples of institutions.
3. To chart the development of the family and link the changes in the family
structure to changes in economic development and social changes.
TOPIC 10. INSTITUTIONS.
10.1. What are Institutions?
Well-known institutions of society are:
The Government in the form of the police; the law courts: the
welfare services: hospitals: the civil service and administrators.
The media; the radio: T.V.: newspapers: Internet: the telephone,
The school system.
Institutions basically reinforce the values of ‘their’ society.
What is right or wrong, our duties and responsibilities, our rights &
entitlements are all transmitted by one or all of the above Institutions.
What are Institutions?
10.2. The Family in Traditional & Contemporary (means Modern) Society
There are different types of families; but hardly any society is without
some kind of Family. The family is the basic social unit. It is the smallest
cell in any society. The family is a special group of people who feel good
and relaxed together and from this union a house becomes a home.
What makes up a family?
What may come to mind is a typical nuclear family: A married couple - a
father and a mother - with one or more children born in wedlock who
together share by themselves the same place of residence. Dad usually
works and mum stays at home looking after the kids and house.
But there are so many other types of families:
spouses without children;
parents with adopted children;
homeless families who live on the street
divorced or separated parents... these are a few examples.
The family is a social institution & as such is likely to reflect the type of
Society is which it exists.
Before industrialisation (1750), the family generally included two, three
or more generations of blood and kin relations. Grandparents, parents and
children would typically form part of the same household, along with many
other relatives. This was called the extended family. The family
generally lived in the country and were farmers.
Industrialisation changed all that. Education became the responsibility of
a separate social institution, the school. Jobs were to be found in the
newly growing industrial cities and so workers had to migrate or travel to
where jobs were and not fixed to the ‘farm’. Once the family moved off
the Land, a large family size was no longer needed.
Consequently, family size fell, family ties were scaled down and separate
social institutions particularly the welfare state - were introduced to
take over the provision of care for the aged. Hence the emergence of the
nuclear family in the industrialised nations: a small non-productive unit,
basically composed of husband, wife and typically two children, all ready
to leave their home on a daily basis - the former to go to work, the latter
to go to school.
The nuclear family lost the functions of education, production and health
care, which the extended family held before. These are now organised in
specialised units - schools, factories, polyclinics, and hospitals under
private or state control. The extended family today persists in many
developing (poor, agricultural based countries), particularly in rural areas,
but also in towns and cities as a form of social security and mutual aid
Today, the family in modern society is again undergoing further change.
Demand for female labour by industry, along with widened educational
achievements, higher expectations by women, divorce and separation, has
led to a large number of women leaving their traditional workplace - the
home - and seeking paid employment.
Two-income households are also encouraged by the provision of
institutionalised parental leave and the provision of child-care day
centres and nurseries.
This may mean a new pattern of child raising and housekeeping - children
being raised at child-care centres and attending pre-school
kindergartens; husbands learning how to share in keeping house; or else it
may mean that a woman takes up a double shift - one paid at work and
another unpaid at home.
The overall effect is that the nuclear family is giving up another function
– that of primary socialisation of new citizens and, at times, that of
A new, basic, family type may also be in the offing: this is the
symmetrical family - a family where the adult members share all the
work, paid & unpaid, inside & outside the home, including domestic chores.
At the same time, the one-parent family - a single working mother with
young children - is becoming increasingly common. Already in the United
States, a quarter of working mothers with young children are single -
widowed, separated or never married.
The Maltese family is basically a nuclear one but with still considerable
inter-generational contact. It is not so rare to find parents still living
with their children after these get married and have their own children.
It is also common to find grand parents
With the small geographical size of the Maltese islands, and the ease of
internal transportation, the Maltese family is actually a modified nuclear
family, having components of both the nuclear and extended family
versions, as well as the symmetrical family too - two-income household.
Many women are in paid employment, most until they get married (to earn
their dowry and/or to buy and furnish their new home) or until they
become mothers, usually soon after marriage.
How do these changes in the family affect the socialisation
If both parents or a single parent are tired after work will they be
Is the breakdown of the family partly responsible for today’s
breakdown of society???
1. Which one of the following examples is not a family?
a) a childless couple
b) a separated father who lives with his daughter
c) a grandfather who lives with his son and his wife
d) a group of friends at a weekend camp
2. What do we call a family where the two adult spouses share all the
work, inside and outside their home, in fairly equal ways?
a) a nuclear family
b) a symmetrical family
c) an extended family
d) a strong family
3. Which one of the following is not a function of the family?
a) emotional support
b) an informal environment for social interaction
c) the administration of government
d) the care of the sick and infirm
4. Explain at least 3 functions/purposes of the extended family.
5. Which services, provided by private agencies or by the State, has
made it easier for women to work for money?
THINK – WHAT ORGANISATIONS LOOK AFTER KIDS AND
THEREFORE ALLOW MUMS TO WORK.
6. Compile a list of at least 4 examples, possibly from your own
experience, of how your own family has socialised you physically,
culturally and socially.
Read the text and answer the question.
“The future of the family depends on an adequate response to the
inevitable natural process of social change. The various changes that are
happening to the Maltese family have both strength and weakness. Some
changes add to fundamental family values; others seem to go against
traditional family values. The young are the makers of the future family.
Naturally they are the most affected by, and prone to, social change.
Nevertheless, they have turned out to be promising, and they do cherish
fundamental family values, though in an ever-increasing secular way”.
Adapted from: Maltese Families in Transition by Carmel Tabone 1995
7. With reference to the above paragraph, what changes in the modern
Maltese family can be considered to be;
(c) What is secularisation and how might it weaken the ability of families
to act as effective institutions?
8. Who does what in your house? Compile a list of household chores and
determine whether one person in the household does any chore only, or
mainly, or whether it is a shared activity between family members.
Mum Dad Brother/Sister Me
10. a) Should women look for paid employment outside their home? Or
should they stay at home? Give reasons for your answers.
b) Apart from financial gains, how does a women benefit by increased
social participation through her job?
c) What kinds of jobs are most suitable to married mothers? Give
examples of jobs and explain why women are suited to these types of
d) Should men contribute to household work? Why/ why not? Give
e) Should young kids be trained and encouraged to involve themselves in
household work? Why/ why not? Give reasons
f) Should their involvement be gendered: (that is, say, boys trained to
help their dads to whitewash the walls and change the fuses; while girls
are trained to help their mum to lay the table and wash the dishes?)
Why/ why not? Give reasons
11. What is the effect of changes in the family today on the husband, the
wife and on the children? Try and bring out both positive and negative
considerations. (It is recommended to gather the required information by
asking these questions to actual husbands, wives and children.)
a) How do husbands feel when their wives go out to work?
b) How do wives feel about the world of paid employment?
c) How do children feel about having both working fathers and mothers?
12. Spend a particular week when you observe the behaviour of your
parents with closer attention. Try not to let them know or find out that
they are being investigated by a social scientist! Every day for seven
consecutive days, keep a detailed diary of how they are spending their
time. How much time have they spent together? How much family time is
spent in each other’s company? After a week, surprise them with I your
results. What has been their reaction? Did they expect to find out that t
they have spent so much, or so little, time together?
Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Day 4 Day 5 Day 6 Day 7
MON TUES WED THUR FRI SAT SUN
Around SCHOOL SCHOOL SCHOOL SCHOOL SCHOOL
Make a separate copy if necessary.
Social Studies: Lesson 6
1. To understand what is meant by the term institution.
2. What is meant by the government?
3. To understand how the government can be seen as an institution.
4. What kind of government services can be looked upon as institutions?
10.4. The Government as an Institution.
A male worker loses his job. He registers as being unemployed and
receives an UNEMPLOYMENT benefit.
A family has two children and receives an allowance for raising each child.
A woman attends for free medication at a state polyclinic.
A worker qualifies for a pension on reaching retiring age.
These are all services which the government provides
What WELFARE services does the Government provide?
All these are services provided by the welfare state, that is the
government. The Welfare State means that the State takes an active
involvement in providing social services, economic security and
redistribution of resources among some or all of its citizens. The State,
though it’s Institutions assumes the responsibility for the basic well
being of the population.
The services offered by the welfare state include sickness, maternity
and unemployment benefits, children’s and widows’ allowances, pensions,
free access to medical and educational services, marriage gratuities,
guardian’s allowances, housing allocation disablement and injury benefits.
All these social services are available in Malta.
Why does the State provide these ‘supporting’ Institutions?
The main reasons behind the setting up of the welfare state is to
guarantee of the basic well-being of its citizens mainly due to 2 factors
1. The democratic desire to give citizens (not only legal and political
rights but also) social justice. This deals with the recognition of the basic
rights of individual citizens and of the state’s obligation to provide for
the enjoyment of such rights. Thus, the welfare state would be an agent
of redistribution of wealth from the rich to the poor. The welfare state
can therefore be seen as a making social fairness a right rather than as a
2. The need for a safety-net for the poor to ensure that the poor and
underprivileged don’t feel exploited & so these people are made to feel
that the existing system that is fair & therefore such people will not
challenge the status-quo and threaten the existence of society – changing
society from a consensus model to a conflict model.
The principle of welfare is intimately tied up with the idea that society is
sensitive & feels responsible for the needs of other members of Society.
What are the 2 main reasons for setting up the welfare state?
Today the welfare state is under attack in many countries.
An argument suggested by the political right is that welfare provision
reduces the incentive towards work and effort because it creates
dependence on state ‘hand-out’ and benefits. Basically it makes people
lazy. Their suggested solution is to dismantle the welfare state
The political left criticises the welfare state for failing to create a
sufficiently equal and socially just society. The rich have remained rich &
the poor generally poor. The provision of welfare has also dampened the
pressure for more democratic social change & maintained the unfair
status quo. Their solution is therefore is to build a welfare state, which
discriminates more effectively in favour of the poor and underprivileged
– i.e. the poor should get larger benefits and the rich should have fewer
benefits and be taxed more.
The major argument, from both left and right, against the welfare state
is about cost. The welfare bill has increased tremendously, because
firstly, the quantities of allowances and benefits has increased in real
terms over the years and, secondly, so have the number of recipients. For
example, the number of persons aged 60 or over - and therefore eligible
for pensions - is increasing in many industrialised countries. Meanwhile,
the number of contributors - that is mainly workers - has fallen because
of high levels of unemployment in many countries & the lower level of
workers due to falls in birth rates in Developed Countries.
What arguments do the a) right and b) left have against the present
structure of the welfare state?
Why is the welfare state costing more & more to countries?
Another attempt at reducing the cost of the welfare state is the private
sector. Private companies are encouraged to come up with services, some
of which are offered against private payment - such as private insurance
schemes, old people’s homes, clinics, nursing services, & private hospitals.
In this way, part of the provision of welfare is privatised & the burden is
shared more amongst private individuals, rather than solely by the state.
Basically if private organisations run private schools and private hospitals
this will save the government much more money – so governments today
are increasingly welcoming private businesses getting involved in areas
that the government used to solely provide.
What other ways (give two) can we reduce the cost of the welfare
In Malta the welfare state was established after the end of the
Second World War. Acts of Parliament included the (i) Education
Ordinance (1946); (ii) the Old Age Pension Act (1948); (iii) the Housing
Act (1949); (iv) the National Assistance Act (1956) and the (v) National
Insurance Act (1956), (vi) children allowances (1974) were created to
support the Welfare State. Benefits paid to females were eventually
raised up to equal those received by men. The pensionable age threshold
was also reduced over the years from 65 (in 1956) to 61 (in 1971). The
pensionable age for women remains 60. The welfare state provides two
kinds of services:
Name two acts and explain how they benefit ordinary citizens.
1. Which of the following is an example of the welfare state?
a) The payment of private pensions by the individual.
b) The payment of children’s allowance.
c) The payment of taxes by individuals.
d) The payment of Value Added Tax (VAT) by consumers.
2. Where does the bulk of the money come from involving the running of
the welfare services?
a) Public corporations.
b) Private sector sponsorships.
c) Income from taxation.
d) The European Community.
3. Explain why many people believe it necessary to reform the present
4. (a) Do you think unemployment benefit is a disincentive for some
people to seek work?
(b) How else could unemployment benefit be managed or allocated?
5. Should welfare benefits only be given to those who cannot afford to
pay directly for them? In other words, if you can afford to pay for
benefits, should you be made to pay for those benefits privately?
Social Studies: Lesson 7
1. What is meant by the term ‘an Institution’?
2. What is the media and why can it be considered as an ‘Institution’?
3. To be able to identify different types of media.
10.6. The Media as an Institution.
Mass media may be said to come in two main varieties.
1. Interactive - It only provides a service to individual citizens, enabling
them to transmit their own message to a particular destination with little
expense and effort e.g. the ‘walkie-talkie’, short-wave radio, the
telephone, electronic mail & the postal system. It is interactive because
it allows people to answer & respond to messages more or less
2. Non-interactive - The second variety, and a much more powerful one,
is that which involves the transfer of communication from one central
agency to a large number of receivers, e.g. television, newspapers and
radio are members of this category. They are non-interactive because
they only allow a one-way flow of communication from sender to receiver,
with little feedback.
Such non-interactive mass media are powerful and influential because
people can select news items for transmission with their own value
judgements, which can in turn influence public opinion.
If we look at our local newspapers, we see that they are owned by
different interest groups, including political parties, church agencies,
private business and trade unions, issue our dailies and weeklies. It should
therefore not be surprising that their choice of headlines, their choice
of news and the positions & comments that they take and make on the
same issue are diverse.
There are many types of mass communication or mass media and include:
1. The oldest form of mass communication is the newspaper. In 1450, the
German Johannes Gutenberg built the first printing press which allowed
fast reproduction of newspapers. Malta’s first newspaper was the Journal
de Malte, which was issued during the days of the French occupation, 200
2. The term ‘it-tokis’, often used in Maltese to refer to the cinema, is a
corruption of the English word talkies: this refers to how films in the
1930s suddenly did not remain silent, but started being accompanied by
3. The telephone is another very effective and cheap way to
communicate and was invented by the American Alexander Graham Bell in
1876. An adaptation of the telephone is the fax machine, which allows
printed information to be transferred.
4. Radio transmission is another cheap & effective medium of
information. In 1901 the Italian Marconi sent a radio message across the
Atlantic Ocean. Locally, about a dozen radio stations, owned by private
firms and public agencies, provide a large variety of programmes, over
most of the day and night. These include news bulletins, musical and hit
parade programmes, sport news, cultural and educational features and
5. TV is still more powerful than radio. Baird transmitted the first
images in 1925. The influence of TV on young children is likely to be huge.
People may spend more time watching TV than at school or at work.
Children learn foreign languages simply by watching television. Are kids
learning how to be violent, how to perform crimes, and how to take up
other actions and value positions similar to those that they see and hear
repeatedly on television?
The Maltese could tune in to Italian television as from 1957. Malta
Television Services started broadcasting in September 1962. Today,
most countries have their own television stations.
Talk shows allow both radio and television to become somewhat
Home-entertainment has grown hugely due to the DVD industry. It is also
becoming a common experience to meet people armed with camcorders to
record special moments such as carnival celebrations, village feasts and
marriage ceremonies. The cinema is again a popular pastime for teenagers
Video and DVDs, plus downloads, like television, can influence society
and people can act in similar ways to those characters seen on the screen.
6. Finally, the latest, and possibly the most dramatic, revolution of all in
mass communication has been the arrival of the internet. These machines
have the opportunity of serving as windows to a huge library and market
of information, of products, of data, frankly of anything you can imagine.
The whole world is now suddenly available at one’s fingertips. You can buy
books, book airline tickets, carry out your school research, and chat with
other internet users, put up your own personal information on what is
called a home page or a web site... It only requires a modem, a telephone
line and access provided by an internet service provider to set anyone
Surfing the web, chat rooms, face book – have all become popular, even
addictive, pastime for increasing numbers today.
There is also email today, which allows individuals to send and receive
messages fast through their personal computers. Email is increasingly
being used for social and political action. Electronic lobbying, electronic
picketing and mass petitions by millions of people in favour of some
initiative have already been successfully organised.
What is the difference between an interactive medium of mass
communication and a non-interactive one? Give examples.
Which one of the following is an interactive medium of mass
A) the TV B) newspapers C) the phone D) movies
What are the 6 means of mass communication or mass media?
Which of the following is an example of mass communication?
A) Typewriter B) Digital camera C) Video game D) The radio
a) How much TV do you and your family watch per day? b) Does TV affect
what happens in the evening e.g. suppertime, play-time, chat time
Do you think frequently seeing violence on TV emotionally desensitises
you? Explain your feelings on this issue.
Mention some other affects of TV on children (concentration span, rapid
shifts of attention). Is reading a dying activity?
Assume a bakery in Sliema was broken into and 250 Euros were stolen
and the owner was also slightly injured in the burglary. Later, the thief
was caught and claimed he had a family, was out of work and had three
You are a local newspaper reporter and you have to report this event.
Write two different reports:
a) one sympathising with the owner of the bakery
b) one sympathising with the thief 
c) One sympathising with the owner of the bakery
d) One sympathising with the thief
Social Studies: Lesson 8
1. Once again to reinforce our understanding of the term ‘Institution’.
2. What do we mean by seeing the Church as an Institution?
3. Evidence that the church influences many people’s everyday lives.
10.8. The Church as an Institution.
The church acts as an organisation, with its own rules and functions,
carried out by its own staff; it acts as a community, bringing together
different members as brothers; it also acts as a political unit, an
influence in decision making processes and a driving force behind certain
In Malta, the Roman Catholic faith has been a powerful symbol of
Maltese national identity and culture, particularly during the period of
British (that is non-catholic) colonial rule (McSweeney’s Grave).
Even before that, during the short French occupation (1798-1800),
disrespect to Church property sparked off a national rebellion, inspired &
coordinated by priests (e.g. Dun Mikiel Xerri & Canon Caruana of Zebbug).
The Church’s influence over Maltese culture cannot be underestimated.
It is intimately involved in the main events of the human life cycle -
birth, marriage, and death. Around two-thirds of the population attend
Sunday mass regularly and listen to weekly homilies from the pulpit. A
considerable percentage of cultural productions- music, drama, poetry,
prose, sculpture, and paintings - carry a religious theme. The solid
presence of the Church at the heart of the Maltese life is everywhere
and is dominated by the central, overpowering presence of the parish
church, which is found in the central square of most local towns and
Historically, the Maltese parish priest has also been the representative
of village and community interests. Malta’s system of government has
always been a rather centralised one. But, as parishes, local communities
have taken and still continue to take many initiatives, which preserve the
settlement’s identity. The parish priest thus has been performing these
services for several years, tasks that may elsewhere be fulfilled by
mayors, city councillors and other local government officers.
One development, which seems to be reducing the influence of the
Church and religion in Society today, is secularisation.
Secularisation is the process where the church has less and less
influence on our everyday lives.
The world today remains dominated by 4 great religions, which share a
common belief in one Supreme Being:
Christianity (strongest in Europe and South America) is a religion
with a mission of salvation; it is a collection of different churches -
such as Catholics, Anglicans, Presbyterians and Lutherans - all
tracing their faith to that established by the son of God, Jesus
Christ, some 2000 years ago. Christians practise their faith in
Churches and look upon the Bible as their main sacred text.
Islam (strongest in North Africa and the Middle East) is based on
a strict code of conduct and behaviour for believers. It was set up
by its main prophet Mohammed (570-632 A.D.). Muslims practise
their faith in mosques and honour the Qoran as their sacred book.
Other religions, like Hinduism and Buddhism are strongest in India &
o Buddhism emphasises the psychological well-being and peace, which
result from a cleansing and purification of the soul and a state of
harmony with the Creator and creation. The name comes from its
main prophet who chose the name Buddha for himself - the name
meaning ‘He who knows the truth’.
o Hinduism includes a belief in reincarnation (a belief that the soul
can return to life by occupying a different body, human or animal)
and a strict hierarchical ordering of human beings into castes.
Note how all the four main religions of the world are monotheistic:
meaning that they acknowledge the existence of only one, Supreme Being.
Religious Country Secular
How does the church transmit or
promote its values onto Maltese
Power of the Church in the Past Power of the Church Today
1. Why is the Catholic Church so important in Maltese culture?
a) because it obliges people to attend mass on Sunday
b) because the parish priest is more powerful than the mayor
c) because it has served as a powerful symbol of identity, especially at
the local level of the town or village
d) because of the beauty and majesty of church buildings
2. Where is the Islamic religion most popular?
in Western Europe b) in South America c) in India & China d) in the
3. What unites all major world religions?
a) the fear of the devil
b) the belief in reincarnation
c) the belief in one God
d) the understanding that you should not eat meat on Fridays
4. Give examples of the possible tension between religious and secular
authorities (such as between a bishop and a prime minister).
5. a)What is secularisation?
b) Do you prefer giving religious or secular and scientific explanations
to what is going on around you? WHY – GIVE REASONS.
6. In some societies, the role of the church and state are not separate
but united together. In fundamentalist societies, usually associated
with the Islamic faith, the religious leader may be also the political
leader; and the religious code of practice becomes enforced as law.
This situation prevailed in many Catholic countries during the time of
the Inquisition. Should religion be more active in the politics and
running of government in a country (like in Fundamental countries) or be
completely separate (like in the UK) or in between? Give reasons for
7. Religion has been a key variable in the outbreak of a number of
armed conflicts. Provide some examples from history. Otherwise, look
up the role of the Crusades, the 30-Years War in Europe (from 1618 to
1648); the Jihad or Holy War of Islam against Christendom and, of
course, Malta’s own Great Siege of 1565. Find out how, today, conflicts
are still taking place on the basis of religious differences.
8. The Catholic Church in Malta operates as a powerful cultural force by
virtue of a multitude of church-inspired organisations. In some villages,
these bodies remain the only ones that organise social events locally,
apart from the activities held in and by the church proper.
Can you compile a list of these church-inspired societies (including
schools) and the activities, which they organise in your town or village?
9. Compile an inventory of churches, chapels, niches, statues, church
schools, places for religious instruction, convents, monasteries and all
buildings and structures with a religious function in your town or village.
How many persons, homes and streets are given the name of a Catholic
saint, or of the village patron saint? Is the influence of the Catholic faith
Social Studies: Lesson 9
1. What is an institution?
2. Why is education an institution?
3. Identify the main three functions of education –
(i) Economic function.
(ii) Socialisation function.
(iii) Self awareness and liberal free thought function.
10.10. Education as an Institution.
Does human development stop when we become adults? If this is so we
can argue that once we leave school we no longer learn things.
In Malta we have to go to school until we are 16. Does this mean we
longer get educated? It is important not to relate education just to
We should look at UNESCO’s definition of education:
“Education refers to the entire process of social life, where we develop
our personal capabilities, attitudes, skills and knowledge, for the benefit
of ourselves and the community as a whole”.
The specialised social institution dedicated to education is the school.
“Institutions” are generally organisational structures that promote
and ensure that a society’s values are followed.
Schools take over from the primary socialisation performed by parents
and enables society’s young generation to acquire the knowledge, skills
and attitudes required to enable society to function. These include skills
for industry and values that our society holds dear. Schools not only
need to equip students with the ability to become economic and
productive, but also to be free thinking, able to criticize effectively
and to pass valid judgements concerning the world around us = (liberal
Schools help young people to gain many skills needed to function in
today’s society. List two skills and explain their importance.
Education is seen by many as a ladder by which one can undergo social
mobility, achieving higher status and obtaining better-paid jobs and
better work conditions.
Social mobility means moving up the social ladder, perhaps from a manual
farm-worker to an administrative post in local government to a
professional architect or teacher.
Give an example of social mobility. How does education help social
Schooling in Malta is compulsory from the ages of six to sixteen. Before
reaching six, pupils may attend kindergartens or pre-school.
Primary school is from the ages of five until eleven and Secondary school
from 11 to 16. These may be state, private or church schools. Students
may also enrol in State Trade Schools and Junior Craft Centres. At
around 16, students may sit for their Matriculation “Secondary Education
Post-Secondary education refers to post-compulsory secondary education
below University level e.g. Sixth Form, Junior College and often leads to
‘A’ level examinations.
Tertiary education is mainly at the University of Malta, though in recent
years MCAST has developed a considerable range of post secondary
educational courses. Another tertiary education institution is the
Institution of Tourism Studies (ITS).
Social Studies: Lesson 10
1. What does it mean to be a citizen of a country – Rights, obligations and
2. What is democracy?
3. What is pluralism?
4. What are interest and pressure groups?
5. What is lobbying?
6. What is the rule of law?
TOPIC 11. EDUCATION FOR NATIONAL AND GLOBAL
11.1. Education & Citizenship
Education also aims at giving members of its society the ability to become
good citizens. Members of a society need to become part of their society
and take on the rights and duties of citizenship. The act of being a
citizen of a particular society or country gives you both obligations and
We may be aware of our responsibilities – to observer the laws of the
land, pay taxes, go to school, respect private property, keep the country
clean. But we also have certain powers to enable, what we feel as right
and as fair, to become reality. We are also able to influence what is
around us and what happens in the world. For example giving money to
charities can change other people’s lives in a huge way. We can join
pressure groups, unite with others who share the same views and try to
change things for the better.
1. What is the meaning of life-long education?
2. Write down and explain the experiences you have had that correspond to
the idea that education at SEC is:
a) the key to personal growth and development.
b) more like a prison and is an obstacle to your personal freedom
and personality formation.
3. Do you agree that education is only about facts? You’ll need to support
your opinion by writing a sentence or two explaining your opinions
4. “We don’t need no education
We don’t need no thought control
No dark sarcasm in the classroom
Teachers: leave those kids alone.
Hey, teacher, leave those kids alone.
All in all, it’s just another brick in the wall.
All in all, your just another brick in the wall”.
What is the message behind this popular song called Another Brick in the
Wall (Part III) by Pink Floyd?
5) Which one of the following is the best explanation for citizenship?
a) the freedom to do anything you please?
b) a set of constraints, taxes and regulations?
c) a passport?
d) a set of rights and duties?
11.3 Citizenship and Democracy.
The word citizenship means belonging to, being a member of, being a citizen of
a particular society and in this case a citizen of a country.
What does citizenship mean? …………………………………………………………….
In democratic countries, the principle of one-person one vote (for adults) and
the right to vote is the basis of the idea of democracy. The basis of this is
that idea that all individuals are equal, whoever they are and that elections
are the fairest way of forming government and that legitimizes (makes it
What is the basis of democracy? …………………………………………………….
Citizens accept election results, accept the politicians elected, and accept the
laws that are created. Citizens agree to the results, the politicians and their
laws. We accept their authority and rule because they have been
democratically elected. In a democratic society, some measure of
disagreement is normal and healthy.
Pluralism is another characteristic of democratic societies. Pluralism is the
idea that many people within society have different beliefs and opinions and
these beliefs and opinions can affect the governments decisions and policies.
Interests groups are citizens that share a particular set of values or aims.
Examples of interest groups are Trade Unions, Pressure Groups and Cultural
and/or Environmental Organisations.
In your own words what is pluralism? ……………………………………………………………….
Give two examples of interest groups other than the ones mentioned above.
Groups can range from small units to very large organisations. Larger groups
with a wider appeal tend to be termed as interest groups, whilst smaller
groups with more specific demands or interests are known as pressure
groups. Trying to get Society to adopt a group’s interest is a process called
What is lobbying?
Give an example of lobbying (the organisation’s name & what is it ‘promoting’?)
Lobbying can be done by means of press releases, information campaigns,
public meetings, publications, paid advertisements, speaking to government
officials and even demonstrations.
If you wanted something done how would you go about it?
Once organised into interest or pressure groups citizens can use the group to
promoting change in society, by attempting to influence decision makers as a
larger group. This is one way in which Society is forced to change and reform
– via the mounting pressure of mass demands from ‘involved’ citizens.
Participation in an association or another group is a model of how to behave in
Involvement is part of the rights and duties of citizenship. Being a citizen
grants you both obligations & rights. Our responsibilities include observing the
laws of the land, paying taxes, going to school respecting private property &
keeping the country clean. We also have rights to express our views.
The Rule of Law is designed to guarantee the freedom and rights of citizens in
a Society. A democratic system is based on the acceptance that every citizen
has basic rights and duties, including the right of ‘one person one vote’ The
Rule of Law and basic human rights allow each and every person the right to
express oneself in public, whilst at the same time ensuring that other citizens
are not damaged by the exercise of such rights of self-expression.
Explain how the Rule of Law guarantees personal rights and freedom.
1. Which of the following is a basic principle of democracy?
a) that everyone can do what they please
b) that the Rule of Law will favour the rich and the powerful
c) that every adult person has the right to vote
d) that people can do and say what ever they want irrespective of
whom they might harm.
2. Which is the main guarantor of an individual’s freedom and rights in
a) the exercise of violence
b) the police
c) fear of being caught
d) rule of law.
3. Which is an advantage of being a member of a pressure or interest group?
a) you may disregard the rule of law
b) you may let someone else fight your battles
c) you may get together with others who share your views
d) you may exercise violence against those whoever don’t agree
4. Which of the following is the best example of citizenship?
a) the freedom to do anything you please
b) a set of constraints, taxes and regulations
c) a passport
d) a set of duties and rights
5. Which of the following is the most acceptable form of political rule?
d) military rule
6. Which one of the following is an interest group?
a) the Malta Employers’ Association
b) Alternativa Demokratika
c) The Nationalist Party
d) The Malta Tennis Association
7. Why does the Figure of Justice (a) hold a sword, (b) a pair of scales
and (c) why is she blindfolded?
Social Studies: Lesson 11
1. To identify some examples that show us how Malta has contributed to
‘World Peace and Development’.
2. To understand the reasons behind the creation of the European Union.
3. To identify the benefits and disadvantages of being a member of the
TOPIC 12. POLITICS & ECONOMICS.
12.1. Malta’s contribution to and Malta’s political & economic relations
with other countries.
The Malta Summit December 1989
The Malta Summit consisted of a meeting between U.S. President George H. W.
Bush and U.S.S.R. leader Mikhail Gorbachev, taking place between December 2-3
1989, just a few weeks after the fall of the Berlin Wall. It was their second
meeting following a meeting that included then President Ronald Reagan, in New
York in December 1988. News reports of the time referred to the Malta
Summit as the most important since 1945, when British Prime Minister Winston
Churchill, Soviet premier Joseph Stalin and U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt
agreed on a post-war plan for Europe at Yalta.
The summit is viewed by some observers as the official end of the Cold War. At
a minimum, it marked the lessening of tensions that were the hallmark of that
era, and signalled a major turning point in east-west relations. During the
summit, President Bush expressed his support for Gorbachev's perestroika
initiative, and other reforms in the Eastern bloc.
Commonwealth Meeting of Heads of Government in Malta Autumn 2005.
Malta hosted the Commonwealth Heads of Government Conference, which
is held every two years.
Members of the Commonwealth, which consist of over 20 Heads of State,
representing a quarter of the world’s population, met in Malta to discuss
various issues such as Third World Debt, the continuing plight of poverty
stricken Africa, Challenges of Globalisation, as well as many other topics.
This was an opportunity for Malta to demonstrate to nations, such as the
UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, India and Canada that Malta
can contribute to world dialogue and promote the notions of international
co-operation and world peace.
EU Asylum Support Office December 2008
Malta will host the EU's asylum support office, which will provide assistance to
countries facing pressure from large numbers of asylum-seekers.
Cyprus and Bulgaria also wanted to host the office, which is expected to have an
annual budget of around €50 million and to employ 100 staff.
The decision will have to be formalised before the end of the year.
According to the Times of Malta, the office will be housed in a new government
building in Valletta, near the Maltese maritime authority.
Malta and the EU
Members of the EU have learnt from the past how to proceed to the
future. Two disastrous World Wars that originated in Europe has taught
us that stability and peace can only come from co-operation not
confrontation. The EU was founded by countries that had a vision of
peace born out of their past nightmares of war.
Europeans realised the need to move from conflict to competition and
from confrontation to co-operation. Economic factors, such as the
contest to control resources and the scramble for new markets had been
the main cause of war.
In 1951, six European nations signed the European Coal and Steel Treaty
in Paris. Since coal and steel are the main ingredients for weapons these
countries would in the future share their resources. In 1957 the Treaty
of Rome formally established the European Economic Community (EEC)
the original name for today’s EU.
One of the first agreements the EEC concluded was the Common
Agricultural Policy (CAP) regulations sharing & joining food production
making Europe’s food supply interdependent … another area of potential
disagreement & strife was again eliminated.
More recently the Euro has been introduced to most EU members,
removing the possibility of currency crises and economic collapse.
EU Structural Funds (which Malta receives considerable net benefit)
was designed to strengthen the economies of poorer member states is
removing another source of tension; inequality and poverty.
Some of the major points made were:
Is the Nation-State a dinosaur?
Are we heading for a Federal Europe with the EU?
How will equality of member states, whether small or large, be
balanced with the need for representation to be based upon size of
Enlargement to 25 States on 1st May 2004 – 10 New Members
The 10 new states joining the EU were: Malta, Cyprus, Poland, Estonia,
Latvia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Hungary, Lithuania, Czech Republic,
These joined the 15 existing members: France, Belgium, Germany, the
Netherlands, Luxemburg, Italy, Denmark, The United Kingdom, Spain,
Portugal, Sweden, Greece, Austria, Ireland & Norway.
Particularly interesting is reconciliation with Germany of Germany’s
Eastern European neighbours, namely Poland and the Czech Republic.
Constitution of the EU
At the present time member states are in discussion concerning the
drafting (preparation of) a Constitution of the European Communion. This
document enshrines (makes ‘holy’) the idea of democracy – one-person one
vote, freedom of action and association, providing these actions do not
endanger the existence of democracy within the EU.
Benefits of the EU
1. If we stand together we can achieve much more than if we stand
separately, e.g. successful trade negotiations with the USA.
2. Peace, economic growth and stability have been achieved and war is
unthinkable between EU member states.
3. A ‘Charter of Fundamental Rights’ is being integrated into an EU
Constitution guaranteeing individual rights for 400 million
individual members of the EU.
4. No country, not even a superpower, will now be able to ignore the
5. Some decisions are best taken at a supranational (above the Nation
State’s control, for example decisions taken in Brussels) level. Two
good examples are these are the Erika and Prestige disasters and
the recent BSE (Mad Cow) outbreaks throughout Europe. Decisions
taken about standards of seaworthiness and food transportation
may have reduced these damages caused by these crises.
6. Allowing individuals the opportunity to be National citizens (e.g.
Maltese, French, etc) AND being European Citizens too.
7. Outside the EU we would have no rights, no representation and no
voice in a continent that mostly is part of the EU.
8. Freedom to move overseas, claim benefits and services and work.
9. Previously countries tried to create unity by suppressing diversity,
smaller language and cultural groupings. Then that country tried to
fuse them and melt them into one larger identity. On the contrary
the EU strives to preserve separate identities, e.g. the recognition
of Malta as an official language and that all EU documents need to
be translated into Maltese.
Disadvantages of the EU
1. Loss of sovereignty by the Nation State. The EU might make some
decisions, which may not be directly in Malta’s interests.
2. Possibility of mass immigration to Malta, overwhelming our country.
3. Culture and traditions being diluted. The EU’s constitution
specifically makes no mention of Christianity and the other EU
members are far less religious and less Catholic than we are.
1. What were the main reasons for setting up the European Coal & Steel
2. What is the main aim of the ‘Structural Fund’?
3. Name 4 ‘new’ and 4 ‘old’ members of the EU.
4. Do you think joining the EU was a good or bad idea? Why? Give
There are many more examples of Malta’s contribution to Regional and
World Peace. For example the Bush – Gorbechev Summit, which some
people see as the beginning of end of the ‘Cold War’, the recent
Commonwealth Heads of Government Conference.
In your own words explain how some of the above examples or other
examples that you may know of (ask your parents), or even our
membership of the EU will or has helped us to contribute to peace.