7. Between the Wars


 I. General Trends 

     A. New Status for Women 

            - during World War I women went to work outside

the home to maintain the economy and produce

war goods

            - after the War women gained the right to vote in

24 countries


    B. Difficulty in Returning to a Peacetime Economy 

            1) Immediate problems:

                    - high inflation

                    - high protective tariffs

                    - large scale unemployment

                    - agricultural recession


            2) Early signs of recovery

                    - due to U. S. investment in Europe

                    - however, the European economy depended

on German reparations which were paid

with loans from the U.S.


            3) The Great Depression of 1929


    C. Intensification of Class Conflict and Nationalism


II. Reactions: Pessimism, Uncertainty, Anxiety 

    A. Freud > "Man is a wolf to man."

                             Civilization and it Discontents (1929)


    B. Einstein > Theory of Relativity: E=mc2

                                - the Manhattan Project


    C. Kafka > fear of the modern state

                                Before the Law (1920)


III. Postwar Germany 

        - Unwillingness to accept World War I defeat

        - High inflation

        - High unemployment

        - Instability of the Weimar Republic

        - Fear of Bolshevism


Return to History 143 Home Page