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Describe the causes of World War I.
A combination of imperialism, arms races, industrial might, and nationalism
pushed the Great Powers of Europe into a regional conflict that quickly exploded
into a global war of unprecedented devastation. Adding in diplomatic tensions,
colonial rivalries, and arms races among the Great Powers of Europe all led to
the creation of two opposing groups, each dedicated to out-maneuvering the
Describe the effect of World War I on European colonies.
The four years of war caused a disruption in how the European nations
administered their colonies. This disruption encouraged nationalist movements
that actually began before World War I. In return for assistance in the war, both
the British and French made promises of increased self-determination to local
elites but reneged on them after the war.
Trace how the Treaty of Versailles led to the rise of totalitarianism in Italy
and Germany.
The Treaty of Versailles left its signers dissatisfied. The English and French
pushed an agreement that punished the Germans. Germany was forced to pay
restitution and admit culpability for starting the war. Territories that Italy had
hoped to gain as a result of aiding the Allies were largely ignored and the Italians
were pushed out of the negotiations. Ultimately, the Treaty of Versailles failed to
bring a lasting peace, for it angered the people of a defeated and
humiliated Germany.
Identify the weapons and technology that led to massive casualties in the
Of the estimated 20 million combatants, one-half were either killed or injured.
This is because both sides developed weapons that led to mass casualties. Both
participated in trench warfare. Although the conditions of life in the trenches
brought about many casualties, this fighting style certainly aided in the casualty
count. Other weapons included submarines, air warfare, mustard gas, landmines,
automatic rifles, tanks, and long-range artillery pieces.
Summarize how the entry of the United States changed the war, both
militarily and politically.
The United States introduced hundreds of thousands of men into battle late in the
war. The Allies would have eventually won the war as the Germans had little with
which to counter. However, the American troops sped up that defeat. Politically,
the United States was brought out of its own isolationism and viewed and
granted victor’s status.
Appraise the unique techniques used by Gandhi in protesting British
First, British authorities consistently underestimated the abilities and broad
appeal of Mohandas Gandhi. He appealed to both the masses and the Westerneducated nationalist politicians in India. His emphasis on nonviolent but
persistent protest weakened British control of India.
Summarize the political, psychological, and economic results of World War
Three major patterns emerged: First, western Europe recovered from the war
only incompletely; second, the United States and Japan rose as giants in
industrial production; third, revolutions of lasting consequence shook Mexico,
Russia, and China.
Characterize the Roaring Twenties.
A brief period of stability, even optimism, emerged in the middle of the 1920s.
The Kellogg-Briand Pact, outlawing war, was signed by a number of nations. By
the latter half of the decade, general economic prosperity and the introduction of
consumer items like the radio and affordable automobiles buoyed consumer
hopes. Cultural creativity appeared in art, films, and literature.
Women, who lost their economic gains in the war’s factories, attained voting
rights and social freedoms in several countries. In science, important advances
continued in physics, biology, and astronomy.
Explain why Italy was the first country in western Europe to experience a
sweeping change of its governmental form.
Postwar conditions appealed to Italian people. The fascists appealed to the
strong sense of nationalism in the Italian people. There was also growing
dissension among and within the classes. On top of that, many of the booms of
the Roaring Twenties failed to reach Italy.
Discuss evidence of political and social change for women in the West in
the 1920s.
Women, who lost their economic gains in the war’s factories, attained voting
rights and social freedoms in several countries. Declining birth rates and overall
prosperity allowed women to engage in more leisure activities. Women openly
dated, smoked, and drank.
Describe how the United States was so successful in its rapid economic
advance after the war.
The U.S. economy boomed between World War I and the Great Depression and
established itself as an innovator in products, technology, and corporate
practices. The nation also exported its culture around the world through music
and movies. Primary to this was the fact that World War I left the United States
untouched by the war and the factory infrastructure was untouched.
Identify some political and social changes among the settler societies in
this era.
Settler societies, such as Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, became more
autonomous during this era. Canada saw an increasingly strong economy and
rapid immigration during the 1920s. Australia emphasized socialist programs like
nationalization of railways, banks, and power plants, and experienced rapid
immigration as well.
Describe the factors that led to Japan’s shift from a liberal democracy to a
military controlled government.
After World War I, Japan became Asia’s leading industrial power. The industrial
combines rapidly expanded in areas like shipbuilding. Like Western countries,
Japan saw its political institutions challenged by war and depression. In
response, the nation developed an aggressive foreign policy pushed by a
government controlled by the military.
Was the Great Depression inevitable? Why or why not?
Although depressions occur on a cyclical pattern, the depth and severity of the
“Great Depression” could have been lessened if certain factors could have been
attended to by the Western Powers. Among those factors are the Treaty of
Versailles, government controls for inflation, and knowledge of economic
principles within leadership groups in the Western Powers.
Define “totalitarianism” and provide examples.
Totalitarianism is a government that exercises massive and direct control over all
activities of its subjects. Totalitarian governments purge opposition, censor news,
control movement of citizens, and distribute commodities.
Compare totalitarianism in the U.S.S.R. and Germany.
Both the U.S.S.R. and Germany exercised massive and direct control over all the
activities of their subjects. Both governments purged opposition, censored news,
controlled movement of citizens, and distributed commodities. Whereas Germany
tried to expand its ideals by conquering neighbors, the U.S.S.R. remained highly
Trace the unique course of the United States in answering the dilemma of
the Great Depression.
The United States government offered direct aid to Americans in economic
trouble in the form of the New Deal. The Social Security system, government
economic intervention and agricultural planning, and banking regulations were all
attempts to recover from the depression. Most importantly for Americans, the
New Deal restored confidence in the economy and in the government.
Summarize the effects of the Great Depression on the politics in Latin
Its economic dependency and weak liberal regimes were made clear by the
world financial crisis of the 1930s. Reform movements gained momentum.
Corporatism, with its roots in Fascism, sought to create states acting as
mediators between different social groups. The most successful example of
political change came from Mexico, where land was redistributed and oil wells
were nationalized.
Give reasons that Japan embarked on a foreign policy of conquest.
Japan’s policies subdued the effects of the depression. The depression hit Japan
hard, but the expansionist policies provided a unifying force and stimulated
growth in war industries.
Relate Great Depression to political instability.
The depression weakened western Europe. Political institutions and ideals were
brought into question. The desperation that was seen by the average citizen was
used as political capital by radical and fringe groups seeking power through the
weak parliamentary systems.
Identify ways that the economic crisis affected patterns of social behavior.
Traditional habits were challenged, especially within colonial territories. Western
women gained the right to vote.
Was World War II inevitable? Why or why not?
The policies and ideals that spread from the Treaty of Versailles and the Great
Depression were the enabling factors that proved World War II was inevitable.
There were key points that could have slowed it down or possibly prevented it but
with the policies and people in offices around that time it was probably inevitable.
Compare the strategies and tactics of World War I to World War II.
The weaponry of World War I returned to be used in World War II; the only
difference was that the weapons were improved. The war basically divided into
the same two camps. They both started in Europe, then spread to other
continents as a result of colonial holdings. Differences included the tone of the
rhetoric that was involved and the callousness for noncombatants in
WWII. Finally, trench warfare was replaced with small unit combat.
Compare the Germans’ policy toward Jews and the Japanese policy toward
the Chinese.
Both displayed a callousness toward their subjugated societies. The difference
appears to be the planned depravity of the German Holocaust. The Japanese
forces took out their frustrations on retreating combatants and innocent civilians.
The German plan was a systematic process to purify its society.
Trace the early successes of the Germans and Japanese.
The fact that the Western and Soviet powers were reluctant to rearm or even
react to the aggression by Japan or Germany were the main reasons they were
so successful.
Why were the Germans and Japanese unable to sustain their level of
victories? What role did the U.S.S.R. play in allied victory?
The Soviet steppes were a natural brake for the advancing Axis powers; adding
the Soviet policy of slash and burn left little to use for the advancing powers. The
United States offered a huge momentum boost to the Allies. The addition of the
United States into the mix resulted in a powerful juggernaut that had a vast
amount of resources.
Describe how the war conferences contributed to the Cold War.
The split in the wartime allies was apparent by the 1944 Tehran Conference. The
Soviet Union clearly wanted compensation in the way of buffer states in eastern
Europe. The results of the Potsdam Conference in 1945 confirmed these
Can you think of any ways that would have kept India from dividing after
This again was inevitability; however, the violence may have been reduced had
the British not responded to civil disobedience with violence.
How did the United Nations’ plans for the Middle East differ from what
The United Nations wanted to divide the territory into two countries. However, allout warfare ensued. Israel proved to be a more formidable opponent than
Which side, East or West, was more responsible for the start of the cold
war? Why?
Both sides hold culpability for the start of the cold war. The West was the first to
enter into an alliance (NATO) to prevent Eastern aggression. However, the
U.S.S.R. did absorb buffer states at the end of WWII.
Summarize the purposes and outcomes of the Marshall Plan.
U.S. aid to western Europe after World War II helped it recover and concurrently
staved off Communist inroads made in the interim. The outcome was a roughly
divided Europe, where countries that received aid were quickly rebuilt.
Evaluate the implications of the cold war on western Europe.
It brought new influences from the United States on internal as well as foreign
policy. The rearmament of western Germany meant that the U.S. would pull aid
if its wishes were not fulfilled.
Generalize the positive and negative outcomes of the implementation of the
welfare state.
The welfare state was state-run “cradle-to-the-grave” care that developed in
western Europe and spread in varying forms to the U.S., Canada, Australia, and
New Zealand. The consolidation of democracy also included a general
movement of war decades. Conservatives did not dismantle the welfare state
and socialist parties moderated their tone. Power passed from one side to the
other without major disruption. Student protests, especially in the United States
and France in the 1960s, had impact on governmental policies. By the late
1970s, politics began to swing back toward the right as economic growth slowed.
Compare the opposing sides in the cold war.
Competition between the West and the Soviet alliance dominated many aspects
of world history from 1945 to 1992, playing a key role in decolonization and
nationalism. Both governmental forms emphasized science, both sold weapons
on the world market, and both promoted new roles for women.
Describe how the changing roles of women affected Western society.
A key facet of postwar change involved women and the family. From the early
1950s onward, the number of married working women rose steadily in the West.
Where women had lacked the vote, they now got it. Gains in higher education
were dramatic. Access to divorce and birth control, the latter coming through
legal abortion and the Pill, were other major developments. Marriage and
children came at later ages. Maternal care was widely replaced by day-care
centers, as both parents worked. A new wave of feminist political agitation
occurred in the 1960s and 1970s. Overall, the family goals established in the
Industrial Revolution were less important.
Describe the ways that the U.S.S.R. took advantage of its eastern European
neighbors. Opposition to Soviet rule was crushed, except in Greece, Albania,
and Yugoslavia. Mass education and propaganda outlets were established.
Industrialization was pushed. A counter to NATO, the Warsaw Pact, was set up.
The new system generated obvious tensions. The Berlin Wall was built to keep
East Germans from escaping to the West. Attempts to rebel against Soviet
oppression were crushed in East Germany, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and
Identify the ways in which the Communist system was unable to compete
with its capitalist
The Soviet Union lagged in consumer goods because governmental policy
favored heavy industry. Living standards improved compared to pre-war
conditions but complaints about poor consumer products and long lines remained
throughout the Communist era. A great deal of environmental damage occurred
because of the drive to produce at all costs. Problems in agricultural production
went unsolved as well.
Outline the successes of the Communist system.
The Soviet leadership continued to build a steady and consistent military, the
Soviets led the way in space exploration, and they sustained a prosperous
economy and an active sports program.
Describe the political and economic reasons for the United States’
interventions in Latin America.
After World War I, the U.S. was clearly the dominant power in the Western
Hemisphere. In South America, private investments by U.S. companies and
loans from the government were the chief means of influence. Military
intervention became a common means of protecting U.S. interests. The grounds
for these interventions were economic, political, strategic, and ideological.
The U.S. Good Neighbor Policy of the 1930s and the Alliance for Progress of the
1960s sought to ameliorate tensions.
Evaluate the reasons why the Cuban Revolution did not spread to other
areas of Latin America.
Cuba has become one of the last bastions of that system, but the model of
revolution and successful resistance to U.S. pressure was attractive to rebels in
other Latin American nations. However, the United States has either used
intervention or containment to deal with the insurrections.
Describe the political, economic, and social factors that placed this region
between the developed and third worlds.
United States programs such as the Good Neighbor Program and Alliance for
Progress aimed to develop the region and foster a cozy relationship between the
countries and the United States. The first world has tried to send aid while
neglecting to deal with social issues, or being concerned with how the
relationship affected first-world social issues.
Trace the status of women in this region during the 20th century.
Latin American women’s status was closer to those of western Europe than
Africa. There were many changes, but discrimination continues. Women were
denied the vote until 1929 in Ecuador. By the 1950s, most of the region allowed
female franchise. Feminist movements pushed for inclusion into elected offices.
Industrial jobs expanded to include women. Shifts in attitudes about women’s
roles developed more slowly. Overall, as in many other areas, by the beginning
of the 21st century, Latin America was in the intermediate position between
industrialized and developing nations where the status of women was concerned.
Appraise the social factors that slowed the advancement of women.
Inequalities in the workplace and politics are commonplace in Latin America.
There are still lingering social prejudices that are cultural and transcend time and
Identify the problems that faced Latin America as the 20th century ended.
As Latin America entered the 21st century, it continued to seek economic, social,
and political growth and stability. New forms of politics were tried, but many longstanding problems remained. There are no easy solutions in this region.
Nevertheless, Latin America was the most advanced region of the “developing”
world and in the 1990s its economies grew considerably. Cultural issues
remained unresolved and Latin America’s global position became increasingly
Trace the factors that led to the spread of democracy throughout the
Several factors have led to the spread of democracy throughout the region,
including the following: movement of people within the region, the end of the cold
war, United States aid and trade, and the internationalization of the labor markets
and trade markets.