Key Points of the 1920s in Europe The Modernistic style of the 1920s was: – Evident in the art deco originating in France – Evident in Bauhaus, the German art school – Expressive of an optimism of accelerated modernization – Emphasized by a wave of neo-orthodox religious thinking The 1920s saw: – The international order continued to be dependent on European powers – The US retreated from active involvement in Europe – In many respects, Japan was regarded as a great power – Colonial concerns continued to affect the balance of power in Europe – The idea of a “world safe for democracy” came under strain because the new democracies in Eastern Europe crumpled
The West and the World after the Great War War led to new questioning of Western supremacy Japan’s emergence as a world power Growing unrest in Asia and Africa – In China, intellectuals adapted Leninism and Wilsonian ideas to a new context – In India, Britain failed to suppress the growing nationalist movement Amritsar Massacre – sparked the struggle for Indian independence Mohandas Gandhi head of Indian National Congress – Egypt won independence in 1922, but remained under British influence – Britain pursued a program of limited reform in Africa On the orders of Brigadier- General Reginald Dyer, the army fired on the crowd for ten minutes. The figures released by the British government were 370 dead and 1200 wounded. Other sources place the number dead at well over 1000. This "brutality stunned the entire nation". The ineffective inquiry and the initial accolades for Dyer by the House of Lords fuelled widespread anger, leading to the Non- cooperation Movement of 1920– 22.
p746 Amritsar Massacre, 1919 In response to Anti- Colonialism the British cracked down on India. In this photo: any Indian using the road where a female British doctor was beaten, was forced to crawl along it.
Enforcing the Versailles Settlement Britain, concerned with its empire, left enforcement of the settlement largely to France French efforts to prevent German resurgence – New alliances in eastern Europe – France invaded the Ruhr in 1923 b/c it accused Germany of being in default on its treaty obligations. Led Germany to “print” $$$ for its striking workers – led to HYPER-INFLATION The Maginot Line – A massive system of fortifications along the Franco-German border – Conflicted with eastern alliance strategy – A sign of declining French self-confidence
The New Political Spectrum: Communism Russia’s transformation of the Left – The USSR, a centralized, non-democratic state – The Comintern Sought worldwide Marxist-Leninist Communist revolution Created a spilt in the international socialist movement Russian Communists (Comintern) realized the true enemy was the socialists Marxists, led by German Karl Kutsky, believed that Lenin communism would damage international socialism. – Russian Civil War pitted the Bolsheviks against Non-Russian nationalities attempting to free themselves from the Russian Empire Foreign intervention (USA, France, Gr.Br., Poland, & Japan all sent troops) The Whites (a variety of non-communist Russians) Russians who had become disillusioned w/ the Communist Party From Lenin to Stalin, 1921-1929 – Lenin’s New Economic Policy (restored private enterprise in agriculture & retail) – Stalin’s Five Year Plan (led to a program of crash industrialization and collectivization of the farms & increased Cultural regimentation) – The new idea of “socialism in one country” – no longer trying to spread communism – demanded “socialist realism”.
Map 26-1 p749 By mid-1918, the new communist regime was under attack from many sides, by both foreign troops and anticommunist Russians. Bolshevik-held territory shrank during 1919, but over the next year, the Red Army managed to regain much of what had been lost and to secure the new communist state. Anton Denikin, Alexander Kolchak, and Nicholas Yudenich commanded the most significant counterrevolutionary forces. While Leon Trotsky commanded the Red Army
p751 Trotsky Stalin Bukharin rivals for Soviet leadership after Lenin’s death. Stalin, the winner, would eventually have his two competitor’s killed.
p752 Vladimir Tatlin Soviet architect Created this model for a monument to the 3 rd International (Comintern) It was supposed to be revolving and twice as tall as the Empire State Building. It was never built but demonstrates the dynamic form of the utopian aspirations of the early years of the communist experiment in Russia
The New Political Spectrum: Fascism Post War Italy – The political situation was complicated by the conviction that Italy should have stayed out of the war since its gains did not justify its costs The Rise of Benito Mussolini – Presented fascism as a solution to Italy’s political problems The “Third Way” = An alternative to both Marxist Socialism and conventional democracy A dynamic remedy for political gridlock – Became prime minister in 1922 – The key role of the Giacomo Matteotti murder, 1924 Matteotti was murdered by Fascists – Many who had tolerated Mussolini as the man who could keep order deserted him in the wake of the murder. Set Mussolini on the path to dictatorship Cemented the Fascist connection to the political use of paramilitary force Key fascist policies – Totalitarian social control – The “corporative state” Sought to strengthen the state in order to promote the national interest & to help mobilize society Was gradually implemented & seemed to restore order Replaced the parliament w/ a Chamber of Fasces & Corporations based on occupation Attracted attention abroad, especially w/ reaction to the Great Depression of the 1930s
The Lateran Pact, 1929 – A settlement between Italy and the Catholic Church Recognized the independent sovereign state of Vatican City Italy pays rent to the Vatican – given Church needed funds Roman Catholicism becomes Official church of Italy Church has significant roles in Marriage and Public education laws – In return the Pope supported Mussolini and Fascism.
p754 Benito Mussolini Italo Balbo Mussolini founded Fascism & became PM of Italy in 1922. This photo is from 1922. Italo Balbo was a pioneering aviator & later fascist Italy’s air force minister
Toward Mass Society Consumerism – Con’t to grow in the 1920s b/c: Expansion of the automobile industry Development of civil aviation Advances in the chemical & electrical industries Industrial transformations spurred by the war – New industries: automobiles, airplanes, electricity, complex machinery – A new cult of efficiency and mass production from America Taylorism & Fordism: – Maximizing worker efficiency by breaking down production into small, repetitive tasks – Maximizing consumerism by raising wages – Mass production for mass consumption – capitalism – Older industries have trouble with new global competition Less advanced industries didn’t modernize instead they made workers work longer hours for less pay. – Changing roles for women in the workforce and society Women earning right to vote in Britain & the US – both voted for existing political parties. See Josephine Baker slide to follow Inflation and economic turmoil – German hyperinflation, 1923 – French inflation until 1928
p757 After moving from the United States to Paris in 1925, Baker quickly created a sensation as a cabaret dancer and singer. Her exotic costumes played on the European association of Africa with the wild and uninhibited.
Advertising Emergence of advertising in the 1920s: – Printing & radio expanded the effects of advertising – Advertising was aimed at mass consumption of goods & services – Advertising became an art form (see slides to follow) – Critics argued that advertising was debasing cultural standards A new “mass culture” – Growth of consumption and advertising – Expanding media: print, radio and film – Democratization of leisure – The growing influence of “popular culture”
p758 Car Ad, 1928: The Six- Cylinder Opel Hits the Jackpot
p759 Jewelry Ad, 1920s: “Wear jewelry-It makes you a winner. And it’s the ideal Christmas gift.”
Complacency and anxiety in France and Britain France – Early confidence – Undercut by a sense that the nation couldn't’t stand another war of such magnitude Britain – Unrest in Ireland led to division of the island – The Liberals declined and Labour rose – A new, less aristocratic political climate – Growing labor unrest and high unemployment
The Trials of the New Democracies The Weimar Republic (see next slide for details) – A democratic government torn between far Left and far Right – Reliance on right-wing paramilitary “Free Corps” and left wing worker’s organizations to maintain order – Gustav Stresemann, leading Weimar statesman The Treaty of Locarno An example proving that Weimar was not inevitably doomed East-Central Europe – Quick collapse of democracy in most of the region’s newly created countries only CZECHOSLOVAKIA remained a democracy throughout the 1920s. – Difficulties caused by breakup of the Hapsburg system
East-Central Europe after WWI New National Borders – Created new economic barriers – Redistributed agricultural land Led to lower production & forced small famers to sell out GERMANY – Weimar Republic Was born in humiliating defeat Had to take responsibility for the Treaty of Versailles Encountered severe economic problems Often had to use repressive methods of the old imperial system to control opposition German Electorate tended to return unstable COALITION governments – TREATY of LOCARNO Acceptance of Germany back to the ranks of respectable states Recognition by France & Germany their common border Freedom for Germany to attempt revisions to its eastern border Eventual membership of Germany into the League of Nations
p764 Foreign ministers Aristide Briand (left) of France and Gustav Stresemann of Germany spearheaded the improved international relations that bred optimism during the late 1920s.
p760 This poster advertises Fritz Lang’s 1926 film Metropolis, which explored the dehumanization and exploitation of the modern city.
The Search for Meaning in a Disordered World Anxiety and Disillusionment – Ortega y Gasset and fears of mass society – Franz Kafka – his stories were set in an incomprehensible futile world - the term Kafkaesque has entered the English language to describe surreal situations like those in his writing. (my favorite is the Metamorphosis – a Kafka short story) – Oswald Spengler, The Decline of the West – a cyclical theory of history that explained how Western Civilization had declined. – Sigmund Freud, Civilization and its Discontents – Freud argued that progress in civilization is based on the suppression of natural instincts which will inevitably explode in violence such as war. Remaking old traditions – Karl Barth – reacted against liberal theology & saw the world & humanity as sinful and helpless (neo-orthodox theology) – Benedetto Croce – was a defender of democracy - reassessment of liberal democracy – The cultural Marxism of Georg Lukács and the Frankfurt School – Lukács believed that Marxism could be used to analyze consciousness & capitalist culture.
Building new traditions – Virginia Woolf’s idea that women needed a writing tradition of their own. A Room of One's Own (1929), with its famous dictum, "A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction." Why does history know so little about women? Experiences of the ordinary people in history will be known by investigating the history of women Women’s creative power is greatly different from men’s Education for women would emphasize the differences between men & women – Dada’s rejection of reason - promoted chaotic artistic productions. Surrealism grew out of Dadaism – André Breton spearheaded the surrealist movement in literature & visual arts. – Bauhaus, the “machine aesthetic” and Constructivism Walter Gropius was the founder of the Bauhaus school and held that elements of machine-based civilization could be used to produce a new, positive artistic tradition. André Breton
p767 Virginia Woolf Woolf, a member of the noted British Bloomsbury Group of intellectuals and one of the most influential female writers of the twentieth century, sought to specify what was needed for a more powerful female voice in the Western literary tradition.
p768 The Bauhaus, an influential but controversial German art school, was established in Weimar in 1919 and then moved to Dessau in 1925. Walter Gropius, its founding director, spearheaded the design of its headquarters building. Constructed in 1925-1926, it immediately became a symbol of the Weimar modernism that some admired and others detested.
"The morality of idiots and their belief in geniuses makes me shit." --Jean (Hans) Arp
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