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University Degree: 1920-1949

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  1. Can any single factor explain the emergence of Fascism?

    Whilst the argument that Fascism can be explained by a single factor is usually exemplified with reference to World War I, such a view doesnt do justice to a series of interrelating and often contingent factors that contribute greatly to the rise of Fascism. Although World War I is undoubtedly a crucial short term factor, there are a number of long term factors preceding World War I which are of significant importance. Consequently the emergence of fascism should be seen as a process that cannot be explained by any single factor.

    • Word count: 2537
  2. Why did the Wall Street Crash and subsequent Depression occur?

    to commit suicide.2 The Wall Street Crash of 1929 was an event that virtually crippled the American economy sending it into a state of panic and impoverishment. Before one can construct an answer to "the causes of the Depression and Crash," it is vital to acknowledge the relationship each has to one and other. The common interpretation that the stock market crash led to the Great Depression is in need of modification. Harold Evans (1998), states that "The crash did have a bearing on events in America, but it was certainly not the single trigger so often described."3 Therefore, although

    • Word count: 2218
  3. History of Post WWII Cleveland Indians

    In general, fans believed the owners were more concerned about generating money for themselves rather than actually attempting to appeal to their consumers. Franklin Lewis, a writer for the Cleveland Press, explained that this attitude created widespread resentment of Cleveland's ownership and "... it annoyed most fans like a perpetual stone in their shoe."5 For example, by 1946 the owners still had yet to allow any Tribe6 games to be broadcast on the radio. They feared that fans would rather listen to a game for free on the radio rather than buy a ticket and watch it for themselves, and

    • Word count: 2208
  4. In considering the process of change in the German Government 1890-1991, how far can the defeat in WWI be seen as a turning point?

    Weltpolitik actually damaged German interests rather than bolster them by causing offence and the destruction of Bismarckian Europe, a sentiment reinforced by Schmidt that "To pursue all courses was the worst possible policy, for it kept alive the distrust of entente powers", however this fails to take into account the social issues which plagued Germany and forced this expansion. When coupled with European events and a web of alliances, WWI was inevitable. Thus the ascension was the key turning point as the desire for power put Germany on a crash course, ending in WWI.

    • Word count: 2783
  5. Do Historical Films help or hinder our understanding of the past? Discuss with reference to one or more films.

    of the past as although the use of black-and-white cinematography reminds us of commemoration and memory, this also distorts public memory as the film tries to be too realistic4 as a feature film. The critic Bratu Hansen furthermore supports this as he suggests that "by posing as the 'real thing' the film usurps the place of the actual event."5 Furthermore Schindler's List hinders understanding of past events as there is a scene in the film illustrating Oskar Schindler's preference for Jewish workers to work for his company rather than polish workers.6 It must be remembered that the Holocaust was universal and that other ethnic minorities such as gypsies, poles, homosexuals and Slavs had suffered due to n**i policies.

    • Word count: 2398
  6. The Rejections to Bombing Auschwitz-Birkenau: A Genuine Concern of Military Sacrifice or Simply the Diffusion of Responsibility?

    The president of the organization, Jacob Rosenheim, immediately directed these telegrams to the War Refugee Board in Washington on June 18th. The telegram requested "prompt disturbance of all transport, military and deportation by the Royal Air Force and recommended bombing the deportation railway between Kosice and Presov". (Gilbert, pp. 66) While Rosenheim acted urgently in deploying the message to the War Refugee Board, John W. Pehle, the head of the WRB, sat on the issue for six days until he set forth any action on the matter.

    • Word count: 2318
  7. Why was Eire neutral during the Second World War?

    It can therefore by ascertained that although Ireland officially held a policy of neutrality, it was in practise, Ireland's own revision of neutrality - one created out of diplomacy and caution, but predominantly pro-Allies in its implementation. --- 'An independent Ireland would see it's own independence in jeopardy the moment it saw the independence of Britain seriously threatened' 1 De Valera had rejected offers from Neville Chamberlain and Winston Churchill to reunite Ireland in return for entering the war. He argued that a neutral Irish Free State would better serve Britain's interests than an allied one.

    • Word count: 2284
  8. What were the social and economic effects of the Allied Occupation of Japan immediately following the Pacific War, and what effect did the Occupation of Japan have on the attitudes of the Japanese people towards the western world.

    Furthermore, it is evident that the attitudes of the Japanese towards the Occupation, whilst critical towards short-term conditions, can be seen as mostly favourable towards the eventual outcomes of the Occupation, especially when discussed in retrospect. In arguing these points, I will break this essay into three parts, each with a focus on the attitudes of the Japanese at the time; a brief overview of Japanese society in the decades preceding the Pacific War and the events leading to Occupation; the social and political restructuring of Japanese society that emerged as a result of Occupation; and the rise of economic nationalism as an after effect of Occupation.

    • Word count: 2389
  9. Did the Charter of the United Nations Reflect and Correct the failings of the League of Nations?

    The League of Nations only succeeded in maintaining International Peace and Security when dealing with crises that concerned relatively weak states; if the League was confronted with a serious challenge, it was ineffective. Indeed, if one considers the Greco-Bulgarian crisis of 1925, it can be seen how the League's success in preventing conflict serves to illuminate this fundamental shortcoming. Firstly, when the League Council issued its verdict on the 7th December that Greece should pay compensation of 30 million Leva to the Bulgarians, the Greeks were forced to accept due to their relative weakness.

    • Word count: 2144
  10. Compare and contrast the persecution of the Jews, Gypsies, Jehovah(TM)s Witnesses and Homosexuals in n**i Germany

    a clear marker as to when the notion of the Jews as an underclass truly began.2 In 1933 there were approximately 499,682 Jews living in Germany, with 80.2% of these Jews being German.3Although they only made up 1% of the German population, many historians have argued that the Jews were used as a scapegoat for the economic failures that Germany faced during the 1930s. The Nazis blamed the Jews for Germany's weak economic position and used this as a platform to gain political support for their policies and to legitimise their regime.

    • Word count: 2924
  11. How did the Irgun and Lehi differ from each other Ideologically?

    Short for 'Irgun Zvai Leumi' (National Military Organisation), The Irgun's members claimed it was an armed expression of Jabotinsky's revisionist Zionism, however it is seen by many historians that some members became out of control, and the Irgun ended up spawning terrorists as a result of these members misinterpreting Jabotinsky's ideas. As its full name suggests, the Irgun was a very militarist group, supposedly with its own training regime and even drills, just like an army. The members of the Irgun became determined to destroy the morale of the British army in Palestine (Cohen, 1987: 101), in an attempt to force them to leave by making it seem like they were fighting a losing battle.

    • Word count: 2176
  12. Book Review - The New Deal by Paul K. Conkin

    Such an ambitious and politicised attempt at revisionism could, quite easily have gone wrong, as politics can overtake the history, but, in Conkin's case, he has succeeded in, not only rectifying the balance of critical appraisals of the New Deal, but also in providing students new to the area with a balanced if occasionally obtuse introduction to the period. At 106 pages long, 'The New Deal' is a short book and as such, can neither hope, nor attempt to approach a full analysis of the economic and political intricacies of the period.

    • Word count: 2967
  13. To what extent was the breakdown of the Soviet-American "Grand Alliance" 1946-1948 the inevitable result of a fundamental clash of interests over the future of Europe?

    In 1945 numerous states suffered defeat and there was an obvious shift in the balance of power in favour of the US and the Soviet Union. In understanding international relations it is important to understand the domestic situation of these two superpowers following the defeat of Fascism. The US emerged from the war economically and militarily superior to any other power and moreover held a monopoly over atomic weapons. The US wanted to retain the Grand Alliance and avoid spheres of influence in Europe but at the same time achieve a beneficial peace settlement which would in the long-term improve the US economy.

    • Word count: 2427
  14. The victorious Allies believed that Germany was responsible for the outbreak of WWI. How far did their victory and the resulting settlement solve the German Problem that they believed had caused the war?

    Germany had much will of its own to fulfill her goals, thus hindering the settlement process and the enforcement of the Allies. Due to the nature of the sudden end of the war, neither winner nor loser was prepared. Germany was still in the aggressive mindset from the war and the Allies were suddenly overwhelmed with the victory that they may not have taken the most effective actions in order to solve what they believed had caused the war. The Allies' victory had influenced their capacity for settlement, and heightened their will for revenge against the Germans.

    • Word count: 2557
  15. The story of the six million Jews who perished during the Second World War has been retold through film, literature and art

    Many historians thought that an attempt to understand the Holocaust would fail because the Holocaust was too unique and horrible compared to anything else. There was also a feeling that to try any type of comparison would devalue the experience of the victims. However, it is the historian's job to try to understand history. The Holocaust is an important historical event that needs to be understood especially to ensure that a similar event is never repeated. Unfortunately, until recently the Holocaust was largely ignored by American and British historians.

    • Word count: 2417
  16. The Significance of Stalinism

    As a result of the offensive of socialism, an egalitarian society within the Soviet Union could be achieved. Thus, the Five-Year Plan was a practical implementation of Marxist theories of socialism to Russian circumstances, and it was effective in mobilizing the Russian masses to work toward industrialization and collectivization. Although the Communist party's appeal to pursue the Five-Year Plan was effective in the attempt to mobilize the Russian citizens to work toward industrialization and collectivization in the U.S.S.R., the controversy lies in the sincerity of the appeal.

    • Word count: 2575
  17. Why and with what consequences did SCAP decide to retain the Emperor as a 'symbol' of Japan?

    The Japanese military, therefore, was given the bulk of the blame for Japan's expansionist policies during the 1930s that had led the nation into war. However, Japan had a traditional tendency dating as far back as the Samari era to be united as a nation under a centralised military power. For SCAP to disgrace and ultimately remove the last thread holding the nation together at such a delicate and crucial time in Japan, could potentially result in complete social upheaval and disarray.

    • Word count: 2540
  18. How important a factor was the weakness of British defences in influencing the British Government to adopt a policy of appeasement in the years 1935-38?

    When this came to be known by the public, British, French and Italian representatives met at Stresa and issued the 'Stresa Front.' This did not propose any action against Germany for breaching the Treaty, but it involved negotiation and the peaceful unity of the Allies is a key example of the policy of appeasement. Furthermore, in response to the reaction of France and the USSR to German rearmament, the British government 'decided to adopt a conciliatory attitude to the German desire to rearm.' (McDonough.F.Hitler, Chamberlain and Appeasement) and they recognised Germany's right to rearm by signing the Anglo-German Naval Agreement.

    • Word count: 2679
  19. In what senses and to what extent are the Holocaust and Israel central to contemporary Jewish Identity?

    From Swastikas on train station walls to Arab Israeli conflicts to the commemoration of Yom-Hashoa (Holocaust remembrance day) to the celebration of Yom-Ha atsma'ut (Israel's birthday), all affect contemporary Jews around the world and continue to shape our modern, Jewish identities. Jews do not need to compete in a morbid contest as to who has suffered the most in history. It is important, however, to explain why the Holocaust is a unique part of human history why it has so strongly affected the identity of the modern Jew. While bearing their unique witness to the Holy One of Israel and to the Torah, the Jewish people have suffered much at different times and in many places.

    • Word count: 2357
  20. To what extent was Stalin's foreign policy after 1945 aimed at the expansion of the communist system.

    McCauley, 1983:9). In contrast the United States foreign policy is generally described as being initially passive, only later changing as a result of expansionist policies undertaken by the Soviet Union. Arguing that although Eastern Europe itself was not of particular strategic importance to the United States, the fear that the expansion would continue and eventually affect Western Europe was of great concern. Hence the use of communist coercion and support of communist uprisings in both neighboring states and the rest of the world gave rise to the United States and their allies' suspicions of Stalin's foreign policy.

    • Word count: 2094
  21. Account for the failure of Japan's attempt to challenge the West from 1931-45.

    Calling their ideology "pan-Asianism"1 they assumed superiority over the other nations adjacent to it and tried to impose its policies on these nations economically. When the majority of countries did not voluntarily comply, Japanese frustration, particularly from the army, meant that they were simply taken over by force instead. Nationalism had come from the development of anti-western feelings and a sense that all the modernisation that was happening was a mistake. There were criticisms of western influences which the Japanese claimed was causing "moral decline"2 and many wished to return to the traditional values of the Meji period.

    • Word count: 2061
  22. Adolf Hitler and WWII.

    For example; the six killing factories were located in #1. Treblinka, #2. Chelmno, #3. Majdanen, #4. Sobibor, #5. Belzec, and #6. Auschwitz Birkenau. The questions of where (places, eastern fronts, western fronts, buildings), what (ex. the killing factories, camps, bases, aims, targets), how (ex. set ups of events, strategies, power,) who (ex. Military, S.S., Nazis, Jews, Hitler), why (ex. reasons for events; power, hatred, religion, nationality), and when (dates; camps, deaths, invasions, attacks, elections) will be detailed throughout each historical event.

    • Word count: 2805
  23. Assess the impact of external factors on Japanese expansion between 1937 and 1941.

    America only issued verbal warnings like the "quarantine aggressor" speech of October 5, 1937 where Roosevelt called for 'positive endeavours to perverse peace'. Public outcry for isolationism in the United States forced the President to retreat even from economic sanctions. Inaction at this stage proved a decisive factor as it allowed Japan to consolidate its position in China, and allowed the military to secure its hold over Japanese policy. Britain attempted to defend its financial interests in China by encouraging Chinese currency reforms and by insisting on dominating the Chinese Maritime Customs Service1.

    • Word count: 2641
  24. Why did fascist parties emerge in so many European countries in the inter-war years?

    The fascist movements had much in common in their ideology, so much that they were indeed able to borrow from each other. Behind the stereotypical fascism defined by brutality and violence there lay a coherent body of thought, which had developed from intellectual movements from the late 19th century onwards. It resulted in a fascist ideology that was elusive, drawing from the right and from the left, which was neither capitalist nor communist, yet sought to create a radical 'Third way.'

    • Word count: 2481
  25. It must be admitted that the Republican Government of Spain has waged war very ineffectually (Liston Oak, May 1937). Comment.

    Prime Minister Casares Quiroga prevaricated, confident proclamations issued forth as important time slipped by, but no arms were issued.2 Quiroga undoubtedly overwhelmed resigned on the 19th of July and was quickly followed twelve hours later by his replacement Martinez Barrio. It was the next new Prime Minister Jose? Giral that issued a decree dissolving the army and ordering that arms be distributed.3 As arms had to be issued anyway the delay proved a costly mistake for two reasons. Firstly it could be argued that in areas where the military hesitated and the workers were prepared the uprising generally failed, were as conversely when the military acted quickly and the workers remained inactive the rising was a success4.

    • Word count: 2087

Conclusion analysis

Good conclusions usually refer back to the question or title and address it directly - for example by using key words from the title.
How well do you think these conclusions address the title or question? Answering these questions should help you find out.

  1. Do they use key words from the title or question?
  2. Do they answer the question directly?
  3. Can you work out the question or title just by reading the conclusion?
  • By the end of the Potsdam Conference any hopes of a post-war alliance between the allies had disappeared. To what extent do you agree with this statement?

    "So in conclusion I wouldn't completely agree with the statement above because if they were able to form an alliance before the conference and were able to defeat Germany as I team, I think that if they had time to sort out their differences then they would have been able to form a strong post-war alliance. But I also believe that if they didn't trust each other from the beginning then they would have to work at it, because without trust they wouldn't be able to help one anther, and even when they were allies before the Potsdam conference they still didn't trust each other 100% that is why Britain was willing to go behind each others back and was willing to form an alliance with Russia if they had the chance. So I agree to a certain extent that after the conference hopes of a post-war alliance had disappeared, but I think if they started from scratch and gave each other a chance then they would have been able to form a good alliance, that could have taken control over countries in the East like the Russians did."

  • To what extent was Stalin's foreign policy after 1945 aimed at the expansion of the communist system.

    "In conclusion there is much disagreement and contradiction in relation to Stalin's Soviet foreign policy after 1945 particularly between traditionalist and revisionist theorists. Traditionalists argued that Stalin's policies were predominantly motivated by communist expansionism and although particular documents tended to prove this, there is also great evidence that much of his foreign policy was actually grounded on security interests and fears. When discussing particular events in history it is difficult to obtain a completely unbiased view and although some arguments may offer more substantial evidence it is difficult to disregard all other factors which may have also been present. 1"

  • The Soviet Union claimed to have made women equal to men. To what extent did it really succeed in doing so?

    "In conclusion, I believe the Soviet Union did not make women equal to men to a great extent, and that women had an unsteady role within society, sometimes being workers, sometimes mothers and sometimes even fighters, whilst men merely provided practical labour. Women still had to deal with family and domestic duties whilst working, and often large families which would have been hard to look after were promoted. The Soviet Union portrayed itself as a gender-equal, but I feel that for the reasons outlined above, it still had an awful lot to do before this ideal would actually have been realised."

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