The Twentieth Century and Beyond

The course begins with a consideration of the causes and consequences of World War I, and then looks at the post-war crisis of liberal values and institutions. It addresses the deepening of that crisis in the 1930s, especially evident in the emergence of ideological politics and extreme nationalism in the context of world-wide depression. That period provides the background for understanding World War II. Attention is then devoted to the Cold War, the competition between capitalism and communism, and the process of decolonization. The course ends with a discussion of the collapse of communism and the emerging world order (or disorder).