A History of Europe Since 1945
Europe's Troubled Peace, 1945-2000
Three papers will be required, to be submitted at the beginning of class on July 8, 15, and 27. These papers should be no longer than four printed, double-spaced pages.
Introduction and Film as evidence
Film: Masculin, Feminin [Jean-Luc Godard, 1965]
Cold War Crises, 1948 - 1962
Buchanan, Europe's Troubled Peace, 1945-2000, Chapters 1-4 or
topics July 6: The Origins of the Cold War: Accident or Design?
|July 6 & 8||
Charles de Gaulle, "The Events of 1968," and the Fifth French Republic to 1995
Buchanan, Europe's Troubled Peace, 1945-2000, Chapter 5 for
Writing Assignment, due July 8: Consider (a) these excerpts and (b) the film "Masculine, Feminine" as you explain the "events" which took place in France in the spring of 1968.
(1) "All of my life I have thought of France in a certain way. This is inspired by sentiment as much as by reason. The emotional side of me tends to imagine France, like the princess in the fairy stories or the Madonna in the frescoes, as dedicated to an exalted and exceptional destiny. Instinctively I have the feeling that Providence has created her either for complete successes or exemplary misfortunes. If, in spite of this, mediocrity shows in her acts and deeds, it strikes me as an absurd anomaly, to be imputed to the faults of Frenchmen, not to the genius of the land. But the positive side of my mind also assures me that France is not really herself unless in the front rank; that only vast enterprises are capable of counterbalancing the ferments of dispersal which are inherent in her people; that our country, as it is, surrounded by the others, as they are, must aim high and hold itself straight, on pain of mortal danger. In short, to my mind, France cannot be France without greatness.
As an adolescent, the fate of France, whether as the subject of history or as the stake in public life, interested me above everything else. . . . I was convinced that France would have to go through gigantic trials, that the interest of life consisted in one day rendering her some signal service, and I would have the occasion to do so." --Charles de Gaulle, writing in his war memoirs.
(2) "I have
something to say, but I don't know what it is."
(3) "De Gaulle = ." --Paul in Masculine, Feminine
The New Germany
Fulbrook, The Divided Nation: A History of Germany, 1918-2008, Parts
Two and Three
Discussion topic: How "new" is Germany since 1949?
|July 15 & 20||
Dictatorship to Democracy: Spain and Italy
Hooper, The New Spaniards, especially Parts One, Two, Five, and Six,
Writing Assignment, due July 15: In what ways might it be argued that the regime of General Franco was responsible for Spain's transition from dictatorship to democracy? And what strikes you as the major strengths and weaknesses of contemporary Spanish democracy?
|July 22 & 27||
Eastern Europe and the Collapse of the Soviet Union
Martin Malia, The Soviet Tragedy: A History of Socialism in Russia,
1917-1991, chapters 9 through 13, or
Writing Assignment, due July 27: Pierre Grosser, a French political scientist, suggests that "philosophy, political science, and the social sciences experienced many debates over the nature of the Soviet system. These debates are not yet resolved since the collapse of the Communist regime gives both support and contradiction to all of the major explanations."
Please offer brief comment on Grosser's observations, then follow with a succinct analysis of the collapse of the Soviet Union. What are the "major explanations?" Consider additionally the following from The New York Times.
TEN years ago - at 7:32 p.m. on Dec. 25,1991, to be precise -- the Soviet Union died a lonely death. There was no violence, no ceremony, no pathos, only the televised resignation of Mikhail S. Gorbachev and the lowering of the red Soviet flag over the Kremlin. A handful of surprised foreigners let out a victorious yelp while an old war veteran issued an angry tirade.
Yet the state that died that day was also one of the most awesome and terrible in history, an experiment born of utopian promise and revolution whose ambitions were as grandiose as its failures. It promised a new man, a new humanity, a new economy, a world of peace; it ended up bankrupt and thoroughly militarized, having crushed initiative and slaughtered millions of its own.
There may come a time when few will believe that the Soviet state actually existed, and even fewer will mourn it. SERGE SCHMEMANN --THE NEW YORK TIMES, December 30, 2001
Europe Since 1991
Buchanan, Europe's Troubled Peace, 1945-2000, Chapters 9, 11, and