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10 History
World War II

Causes of WWII
The Paris Peace Conference and the Treaty of


The Great Depression

The rise of dictatorships.
The Nazi Party.
The Third Reich.

The Paris Peace Conference

and the Treaty of Versailles.

1918: members of the Allied powers (Britain, France, USA, Italy)

meet to negoQate the terms of surrender for the defeated central
powers (Germany, Austria-Hungary, OToman Empire, Bulgaria).

The terms of the TOV are devastaQng for Germany, poliQcally and

Destabilises the Germany economy (mass unemployment, severe

rates of inaQon) resentment and biTerness.

Causes tension between other naQons (Italy) who felt they received
too fewer benets in joining the Allies.

Japans aTempts to introduce a racial equality clause tensions

with the West rise of Japanese militarism and naQonalism.

Key outcomes of the Treaty

of Versailles
ArQcle 231 (The War Guilt clause) blames Germany and its allies for
triggering WWI, and deems Germany responsible for the loss and damages
or repara%ons to be paid to the Allies.
German army is limited 100,000 men; conscripQon is banned; air force is
disbanded; the producQon of weaponry is limited.
German territory is given to neighboring naQons (France, Denmark, Belgium,
Poland). Other German controlled areas were reclaimed in order to create
Czechoslovakia. Italy is also given some territory.
German colonies were divided between the Allies (Australia).
The League of NaQons is established, with the aim of prevenQng another war
and maintaining world peace by seTling disputes between naQons through

The Great Depression

End of WWI: Kaiser Wilhelm II

abdicates the throne; Germany is
defeated Weimar Republic is

1929 the NY stock market crashes

Depression unQl the 1930s.

Germany suers mass

unemployment, record price rises
and a fall in the standard of living.

Workers go on strike.

German currency (the

Deutschmark) depreciates in value.

Foreign investors move out of


The rise of dictatorships

PoliQcal movements and ideologies become popular in Europe and Asia;

communism, fascism and militarism strict government control and military
power (Soviet Union, Italy, Japan, Germany).

Common features:

State > individual.

Strong, central leader.

Public displays of power and authority (parades and rallies).

Use of propaganda campaigns.

NaQonal pride.

Imperial aims.

The need for force.

The Nazi Party

NaQonal Socialist German Workers Party.
Founder: Adolf Hitler.
Opposes and resents the restricQons enforced by the Treaty of


Strong, charismaQc leader with a small, powerful inner circle.

Ideology: German naQonalism, anQ-communism, anQ-SemiQsm,

Aryan superiority, endorsement of the stab-in-the-back myth.

ATempts to seize power in 1923 (The Beer Hall Putsch) fails

many leaders imprisoned.

1932 elecQon, Nazi Party receives 37.2% of votes 1933 Hitler is

appointed Chancellor.

The Third Reich

The era of Hitler's rule.

LiTle or no personal freedom.

People are encouraged to inform on one another.

Propaganda and rallies are imperaQve.

Punishments are severe and can include torture or internment in

concentraQon camps.

Jews are a primary target, as well as free-thinking writers, arQsts,

playwrights, professors etc.

Ceremonies, uniforms, symbols, marches, music and rallies are used

to build naQonalism and belonging among German people.