It seeks to disentangle effects that were clearly directly due to the war from those which can be seen as the result of changes already affecting pre-war Europe, and those due to post-war developments, such as the Cold War and the European Union. It examines the relationship between long term social, economic and cultural developments and the impact of the war and political turning points. The Impact of the War That great events have great effects seems a truism and it would follow that the Second World War, a conflict which caused a colossal loss of life, saw a continent divided as mighty armies strove for supremacy, and ended with much of Europe in ruins and the rest impoverished, must have had a transforming effect. Few would deny that the great context for the development of Europe, politically, socially and economically, in the immediate post-war years was the war, but did it really transform Europe and, if so, for how long?
The Age of Anxiety The World after the Great War World War One had brought unprecedented destruction to the world and the Treaty of Versailles, which Woodrow Wilson had envisioned as the instrument of permanent peace, created more problems than it solved.
The harsh treatment of Germany, the failure to resolve colonial claims of the Allied powers, and the political upheaval which had begun in Russia but soon spread to other nations together with a massive worldwide economic depression led waste to established values and caused cultural transformations and abandonment of traditional ideas on a scale never before seen.
Belief in the superiority of European social and political institutions crumbled while bold new cultural paths emerged. Even the belief in Newtonian physics, considered immutable, was soon challenged. Uncertainty and Change in the Postwar World: The Great War had been enthusiastically supported by European and American intellectuals, who saw it as a great adventure.
The harsh realities of the war left them disillusioned about war and human nature itself. The result was a feeling of despair and fatalism. A number of American writers, such as T.
Eliot and Ernest Hemingway, left America for Europe where they expressed their revulsion with the war in their work. Their disillusionment was so great that Gertrude Stein, also an American author once remarked to Ernest Hemingway, "All you young people who fought in the war; you are a lost generation.
Among the casualties of the Great War was the idea of human progress. Thinkers of the previous generation, particularly in the United States and Europe had believed that human society was gradually improving.
The destruction of the war had destroyed this belief and left many disillusioned and convinced of the meaninglessness of the entire concept of progress. Western society, so long believed by Europeans and Americans to be superior to others, was seen by many writers as in a state of permanent decline.
Spengler wrote that all societies pass through a cycle of growth and decay, similar to the life cycle of organisms. He concluded from his study of European history that European society had entered the final stage of its existence; nothing remained except inevitable decline, which would be marked by imperialism and warfare.
His argument was strangely comforting to those who tried to rationalize their postwar despair.
Arnold Toynbee, a British historian, began work at this time on his classic twelve volume work, A Study of History in which he attempted to analyze the development of societies through time.
Among the casualties of the war: The idea that science would lead humanity to a beneficial conquest of nature. This idea died as scientists spent the war creating poisonous gas and high impact explosives.
Democracy, the idea that people should have a voice in choosing their leaders had led to universal male suffrage in most societies and the extension of the right to vote to women.
The result was an unprecedented degree of participation by individuals in elections and referendums. This noble concept was sadly seen by many intellectuals as a weak system that championed the tyranny of the average person.
Democracy was to them a product of decay; the ideal should be "elite rule.The state of relations between the United States and its allies and the Soviet Union and its allies between the end of World War II to ; based on creation of political spheres of influence and a nuclear arms race rather than actual warfare.
With Europe’s infrastructure, military and economy in shambles, many European colonies saw an opportunity to gain freedom with their colonizers weakened state. Many movements for independence such as the Indochina war and decolonization of India, all would have been impossible if Europe wasn’t destroyed by world war 2.
World History Chapter STUDY. What impact did World War I have on Europe's colonial empires? The word you in laborers and soldiers from the colonies. Which of the following was a more prominent feature of World War II then in World War I? The blurring the line between civilian and military targets.
The emergence of modern Europe, – Economy and society. The 16th century was a period of vigorous economic expansion. This expansion in turn played a major role in the many other transformations—social, political, and cultural—of the early modern age.
The relationship between the Egyptian military and state is turned on its head, with the latter reporting to the former rather than vice versa.
The task facing Egypt is thus to reverse this relationship and so terminate once and for all the national myth of military as state builder. The Ottoman Empire before World War I was in a state of rapid transition and decay. Through the medieval period and into the modern era, the Ottoman Empire had been one of the world’s largest imperial powers.
In the 17th century the Muslim Ottomans ruled vast swathes of eastern Europe.