Twentieth-Century Europe

Course Outline

I. Introduction and Course Overview.

II. The Paris World's Fair of 1900: A Portrait of Europe on the Eve of the First World War.

III. The First Global Crisis: World War I, 1914-1918.

A. The Origins of World War I, 1871-1914.
    [Merriman, Chapter 22]

B. World War I, 1914-1918.
    [Merriman, Chapter 22]

C. Literature, Art, and the War.
    [Handout: World War I in the Arts]

IV. Peace-making, Revolution, and Recovery, 1917-1929.
A. Communist Revolution in Russia, 1917-24.
    [Merriman, Chapter 23]

B. Revolutionary Outbreaks in Eastern and Western Europe, 1918-1921.

C. The Peace Conference of 1919 and the Versailles System, 1919-1929.
    [Merriman, Chapter 24]

D. The Western Democracies, 1919-1929.
    [Merriman, Chapter 24]

E. Eastern and Southern Europe and Russia, 1919-1929.

V. European Culture and Society Between the Wars, 1919-1939.
A. Background: The Crisis of European Thought, 1871-1914.

B. Intellectuals and Artists Respond to the Post-war World.
    [Merriman, Chapter 24]

C. The Search for New Belief Systems or the Reaffirmation of Traditional Beliefs.

D. Existentialism.

VI. Economic and Political Challenges, 1929-1939.
A. The Great Depression of 1929.
    [Merriman, Chapter 25]

B. Great Britain and France Respond to the Depression.

C. Totalitarianism Triumphant -- Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany.
    [Merriman, Chapter 24]

D. Totalitarianism Triumphant -- Soviet Russia.
    [Merriman, Chapter 23]

E. The First Challenges to the European Empires.

VII. The Second Global Crisis: World War II, 1939-1945.
A. The Origins of World War II in Europe (1937-1939) and Asia (1931-1939).
    [Merriman, Chapter 25]

B. World War II: The Axis Powers Triumphant, 1939-1943.
    [Merriman, Chapter 26]

C. World War II: The Defeat of the Axis Powers, 1943-1945.
    [Merriman, Chapter 26]

VIII. The Cold War Begins, 1945-1949.
        [Merriman, Chapter 27]
A. The Grand Alliance and the War-time Conferences, 1941-1945.

B. The Origins of Containment, 1945-1949.

IX. The European Continent Since 1945.
      [Merriman, Chapter 27]
A. General Trends: Recovery from the War, 1945-mid-1950s.

B. General Trends: Affluence and Social Conflicts, mid-1950s-mid-1970s.

C. Case Studies of European Nations, 1945-1990.

    1. The Germanies: From Defeat and Division to Unification.

    2. Great Britain and France.

    3. Poland: From Soviet Occupation to Independent Nation.

    4. The Soviet Union: The Failure of Communism.

    5. Ethnic and Nationalistic Violence: The Tragic Case of Yugoslavia, 1990-2005.

D. Post-war Intellectual and Cultural Trends in Europe.
X. From the 1950s to the End of the Cold War in 1990.
A. The 1950s and the Crises of 1953-1957.

B. Decolonization Movements in the Non-western World.
    [Merriman, Chapter 28]

C. The 1960s: the Berlin Wall, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the Vietnam War.
    [Merriman, Chapter 28]

D. The Middle East in the Context of the Cold War, 1948-19--.

E. The Collapse of Communism and the End of the Cold War, 1970s-1990.
    [Merriman, Chapter 29]

XI. Conclusion: Prospects for the New Millennium.
       [Merriman, Chapter 30]

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Approximate Test Dates

Test I: 22 September 2005

Test II: 01 November 2005

Final: 08 December 2005@11:00am


This Page is Maintained by Robert W. Brown

Last Update: 17.VIII.2005

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