Chapter 15 BY: Stephen bell

Section 1 Postwar Uncertainty

Setting the Stage: The horrors of World War I shattered the Enlightenment belief that progress would continue and reason would prevail.

A New Revolution in Science: The ideas of Albert Einstein and Sigmund Freud had an enormous impact on the 20th century. These thinkers were part of a scientific revolution as important as that brought about centuries earlier by Copernicus and Galileo. German-born physicist Albert Einstein offered startling new ideas on space, time, energy, and matter. Since relative motion is the key to Einstein’s idea, it is called the theory of relativity.

The ideas of Austrian physician Sigmund Freud were as revolutionary as Einstein’s. Freud treated patients with psychological problems.

Literature in the 1920s: The brutality of World War I caused philosophers and writers to question accepted ideas about reason and progress. In 1922, T. S. Eliot, an American poet living in England, wrote that Western society had lost its spiritual values.

Writers Reflect Society’s Concerns- The horror of war made a deep impression on many writers. His books feature people caught in threatening situations they can neither understand nor escape. Many novels showed the influence of Freud’s theories on the unconscious.

Thinkers React to Uncertainties- In their search for meaning in an uncertain world,some thinkers turned to the philosophy known as existentialism. A major leader of this movement was the philosopher Jean Paul Sartre of France. Existentialists believed that there is no universal meaning to life. The existentialists were influenced by the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche.

Revolution in the Arts: Although many of the new directions in painting and music began in the prewar period, they evolved after the war.

Artists Rebel Against Tradition- Artists rebelled against earlier realistic styles of painting. Inspired by traditional African art, Georges Braque of France and Pablo Picasso of Spain founded Cubism in 1907. Surrealism, an art movement that sought to link the world of dreams with real life, was inspired by Freuds ideas.

Composers Try New Styles- In both classical and popular music, composers moved away from traditional styles.A new popular musical style called jazz emerged in the United States. It was developed by musicians, mainly African Americans, in New Orleans, Memphis, and Chicago.

Society Challenges Convention: World War I had disrupted traditional social patterns. New ideas and ways of life led to a new kind of individual freedom during the 1920s.

Women’s Roles Change- The independent spirit of the times showed clearly in the changes women were making in their lives. Women abandoned restrictive clothing and hairstyles. They wore shorter, looser garments and had their hair “bobbed,” or cut short.

Technological Advances Improve Life: During World War I, scientists developed new drugs and medical treatments that helped millions of people in the postwar years.

The Automobile Alters Society- The automobile benefited from a host of wartime innovations and improvements. In prewar Britain, autos were owned exclusively by the rich. British factories produced 34,000 autos in 1913. Increased auto use by the average family led to lifestyle changes.

Airplanes Transform Travel- International air travel became an objective after the war. In 1919, two British pilots made the first successful flight across the Atlantic, from Newfoundland to Ireland. In 1927, an American pilot named Charles Lindbergh captured world attention with a 33-hour solo flight from New York to Paris.

Radio and Movies Dominate Popular Entertainment- Guglielmo Marconi conducted his first successful experiments with radio in 1895.In 1920, the world’s first commercial radio station—KDKA in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania—began broadcasting. Motion pictures were also a major industry in the 1920s. Many countries, from Cuba to Japan, produced movies.

Section 2 A Worldwide Depression

SETTING THE STAGE- By the late 1920s, European nations were rebuilding war torn economies. They were aided by loans from the more prosperous United States. Only the United States and Japan came out of the war in better financial shape than before.

Postwar Europe: In both human suffering and economic terms, the cost of World War I was immense.

Unstable New Democracies- War’s end saw the sudden rise of new democracies. From 1914 to 1918, Europe’s last absolute rulers had been overthrown. The first of the new governments was formed in Russia in 1917. Many citizens of the new democracies had little experience with representative government.When no single party won a majority, a coalition government, or temporary alliance of several parties, was needed to form a parliamentary majority. Frequent changes in government made it hard for democratic countries to develop strong leadership and move toward long-term goals.

The Weimar Republic: Germany’s new democratic government was set up in 1919. Known as the Weimar Republic, it was named after the city where the national assembly met. The Weimar Republic had serious weaknesses from the start. First, Germany lacked a strong democratic tradition. Inflation Causes Crisis in Germany.

Inflation Causes Crisis in Germany- Germany also faced enormous economic problems that had begun during the war. Unlike Britain and France, Germany had not greatly increased its wartime taxes. Burdened with heavy reparations payments to the Allies and with other economic problems, Germany printed even more money.

Attempts at Economic Stability- Germany recovered from the 1923 inflation thanks largely to the work of an international committee. Put into effect in 1924, the Dawes Plan helped slow inflation. Efforts at a Lasting Peace- As prosperity returned, Germany’s foreign minister, Gustav Stresemann and France’s foreign minister, Aristide Briand tried to improve relations between their countries. They signed a treaty promising that France and Germany would never again make war against each other. Germany also agreed to respect the existing borders of France and Belgium. It then was admitted to the League of Nations.

Financial Collapse: In the late 1920s, American economic prosperity largely sustained the world economy. If the U.S. economy weakened, the whole world’s economic system might collapse. In 1929, it did.

A Flawed U.S. Economy- Despite prosperity, several weaknesses in the U.S. economy caused serious problems. By 1929, American factories were turning out nearly half of the world’s industrial goods. The richest 5 percent of the population received 33 percent of all personal income in 1929. During the 1920s, overproduction affected American farmers as well. Unable to sell their crops at a profit, many farmers could not pay off the bank loans that kept them in business. Their unpaid debts weakened banks and forced some to close.

The Stock Market Crashes- In 1929, New York City’s Wall Street was the financial capital of the world. At Wall Street’s New York Stock Exchange, optimism about the booming U.S. economy showed in soaring prices for stocks. In September 1929, some investors began to think that stock prices were unnaturally high.

The Great Depression: People could not pay the money they owed on margin purchases. Stocks they had bought at high prices were now worthless. A long business slump, which would come to be called the Great Depression. By 1933, one-fourth of all American workers had no jobs.

A Global Depression- The collapse of the American economy sent shock waves around the world. The American market for European goods dropped sharply as the U.S. Congress placed high tariffs on imported goods so that American dollars would stay in the United States and pay for American goods. Many countries that depended on exporting goods to the United States also suffered.

Effects Throughout the World- Because of war debts and dependence on American loans and investments, Germany and Austria were particularly hard hit. The crash was felt heavily in Latin America as well.

The World Confronts the Crisis: The Depression confronted democracies with a serious challenge to their economic and political systems. Each country met the crisis in its own way.

Britain Takes Steps to Improve Its Economy- The Depression hit Britain severely. To meet the emergency, British voters elected a multiparty coalition known as the National Government. It also lowered interest rates to encourage industrial growth. These measures brought about a slow but steady recovery.

France Responds to Economic Crisis- Unlike Britain, France had a more self-sufficient economy. Unlike Britain, France had a more self-sufficient economy. The economic crisis contributed to political instability. In 1933, five coalition governments formed and fell.

Socialist Governments Find Solutions- The Socialist governments in the Scandinavian countries of Denmark, Sweden, and Norway also met the challenge of economic crisis successfully. To pay for these benefits, the governments taxed all citizens.

Recovery in the United States- In 1932, in the first presidential election after the Depression had begun, U.S. voters elected Franklin D. Roosevelt. Roosevelt immediately began a program of government reform that he called the New Deal. The New Deal did eventually reform the American economic system.

Section 3 Fascism Rises in Europe

SETTING THE STAGE- Many democracies, including the United States, Britain, and France, remained strong despite the economic crisis caused by the Great Depression. However, millions of people lost faith in democratic government.

Fascism’s Rise in Italy: Fascism was a new, militant political movement that emphasized loyalty to the state and obedience to its leader. Unlike communism, fascism had no clearly defined theory or program. In some ways, fascism was similar to communism. Both systems were ruled by dictators who allowed only their own political party.

Mussolini Takes Control- Fascism’s rise in Italy was fueled by bitter disappointment over the failure to win large territorial gains at the 1919 Paris Peace Conference. A newspaper editor and politician named Benito Mussolini boldly promised to rescue Italy by reviving its economy and rebuilding its armed forces. In October 1922, about 30,000 Fascists marched on Rome. They demanded that King Victor Emmanuel III put Mussolini in charge of the government.

Il Duce’s Leadership- Mussolini was now Il Duce, or the leader. Government censors forced radio stations and publications to broadcast or publish only Fascist doctrines. However, Mussolini never had the total control achieved by Joseph Stalin in the Soviet Union or Adolf Hitler in Germany.

Hitler Rises to Power in Germany: When Mussolini became dictator of Italy in the mid-1920s, Adolf Hitler was a little-known political leader whose early life had been marked by disappointment. When World War I broke out, Hitler found a new beginning.

The Rise of the Nazis- At the end of the war, Hitler settled in Munich. In 1919, he joined a tiny right-wing political group. Its policies formed the German brand of fascism known as Nazism. Within a short time, Hitler’s success as an organizer and speaker led him to be chosen der Führer, or the leader, of the Nazi party. While in jail, Hitler wrote Mein Kampf. Hitler also declared that Germany was overcrowded and needed more lebensraum, or living space. After leaving prison in 1924, Hitler revived the Nazi Party.

Hitler Becomes Chancellor: The Nazis had become the largest political party by 1932. Conservative leaders mistakenly believed they could control Hitler and use him for their purposes. Once in office, Hitler called for new elections, hoping to win a parliamentary majority. Hitler used his new power to turn Germany into a totalitarian state. He banned all other political parties and had opponents arrested. The Nazis quickly took command of the economy. New laws banned strikes, dissolved independent labor unions, and gave the government authority over business and labor.

The Führer Is Supreme- Hitler wanted more than just economic and political power—he wanted control over every aspect of German life. Churches were forbidden to criticize the Nazis or the government. Schoolchildren had to join the Hitler Youth (for boys) or the League of German Girls.

Hitler Makes War on the Jews- Hatred of Jews, or anti-Semitism, was a key part of Nazi ideology. Although Jews were less than one percent of the population, the Nazis used them as scapegoats for all Germany’s troubles since the war. On this night of November 9, 1938, Nazi mobs attacked Jews in their homes and on the streets and destroyed thousands of Jewish-owned buildings. This rampage called Kristallnacht.

Other Countries Fall to Dictators: While Fascists took power in Italy and Germany, the nations formed in eastern Europe after World War I also were falling to dictators. Only in European nations with strong democratic traditions—Britain, France, and the Scandinavian countries—did democracy survive. By the mid-1930s, the powerful nations of the world were split into two antagonistic camps—democratic and totalitarian.

Section 4 Aggressors Invade Nations

SETTING THE STAGE- By the mid-1930s, Germany and Italy seemed bent on military conquest.

Japan Seeks an Empire: During the 1920s, the Japanese government became more democratic. In 1922, Japan signed an international treaty agreeing to respect China’s borders. Japan’s parliamentary system had several weaknesses, however.

Militarists Take Control of Japan- As long as Japan remained prosperous, the civilian government kept power. But when the Great Depression struck in 1929, many Japanese blamed the government. Keeping Emperor Hirohito as head of state won popular support for the army leaders who ruled in his name. They planned a Pacific empire that included a conquered China.

Japan Invades Manchuria- Japanese businesses had invested heavily in China’s northeast province, Manchuria. It was an area rich in iron and coal. The Japanese attack on Manchuria was the first direct challenge to the League of Nations.The League also included the three countries that posed the greatest threat to peace—Germany, Japan, and Italy.

Japan Invades China- Four years later, a border incident touched off a full-scale war between Japan and China. Japanese forces swept into northern China. Despite having a million soldiers, China’s army led by Jiang Jieshi was no match for the better equipped and trained Japanese. Beijing and other northern cities as well as the capital, Nanjing, fell to the Japanese in 1937.

European Aggressors on the March: The League’s failure to stop the Japanese encouraged European Fascists to plan aggression of their own. The Italian leader Mussolini dreamed of building a colonial empire in Africa like those of Britain and France.

Mussolini Attacks Ethiopia- Ethiopia was one of Africa’s three independent nations. The Ethiopians had successfully resisted an Italian attempt at conquest during the 1890s. The Ethiopian emperor, Haile Selassie, urgently appealed to the League for help. By giving in to Mussolini in Africa, Britain and France hoped to keep peace in Europe.

Hitler Defies Versailles Treaty- Hitler had long pledged to undo the Versailles Treaty. Among its provisions, the treaty limited the size of Germany’s army. The League’s failure to stop Germany from rearming convinced Hitler to take even greater risks. The British urged appeasement, giving in to an aggressor to keep peace. Hitler later admitted that he would have backed down if the French and British had challenged him. Hitler’s growing strength convinced Mussolini that he should seek an alliance with Germany. Germany, Italy, and Japan came to be called the Axis Powers.

Civil War Erupts in Spain- Hitler and Mussolini again tested the will of the democracies of Europe in the Spanish Civil War. In July 1936, army leaders, favoring a Fascist-style government, joined General Francisco Franco in a revolt. Thus began a civil war that dragged on for three years.Hitler and Mussolini sent troops, tanks, and airplanes to help Franco’s forces, which were called the Nationalists.

Democratic Nations Try to Preserve Peace: Instead of taking a stand against Fascist aggression in the 1930s, Britain and France repeatedly made concessions, hoping to keep peace.

United States Follows an Isolationist Policy- Many Americans supported isolationism, the belief that political ties to other countries should be avoided. Beginning in 1935, Congress passed three Neutrality Acts.

The German Reich Expands- On November 5, 1937, Hitler announced to his advisers his plans to absorb Austria and Czechoslovakia into the Third Reich or German Empire. The Treaty of Versailles prohibited Anschluss or a union between Austria and Germany. Hitler next turned to Czechoslovakia. About three million German-speaking people lived in the western border regions of Czechoslovakia called the Sudetenland.

Britain and France Again Choose Appeasement- France and Britain were preparing for war when Mussolini proposed a meeting of Germany, France, Britain, and Italy in Munich, Germany. The Munich Conference was held on September 29, 1938. When Chamberlain returned to London, he told cheering crowds, “I believe it is peace for our time.” Winston Churchill, then a member of the British Parliament, strongly disagreed. Less than six months after the Munich meeting, Hitler took Czechoslovakia. Soon after, Mussolini seized Albania. The Poles refused and turned to Britain and France for aid. But appeasement had convinced Hitler that neither nation would risk war.

Nazis and Soviets Sign Nonaggression Pact- Britain and France asked the Soviet Union to join them in stopping Hitler’s aggression. As Stalin talked with Britain and France, he also bargained with Hitler. Once bitter enemies, Fascist Germany and Communist Russia now publicly pledged never to attack one another. On August 23, 1939, their leaders signed a nonaggression pact. As the Axis Powers moved unchecked at the end of the decade, war appeared inevitable.

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