- Investigate any of the following:
a. The rise of Hitler
b. The Russian purges of 1936-1938
c. Jean-Paul Sartre's existentialism
d. The origins and achievements of the Popular Front in France
e. The career of Mussolini
f. The Soviet Five-Year Plans
- Twentieth-century totalitarianism repudiated democracy. Yet in spite of their opposition to
each other, these two ideologies shared certain common nineteenth-century roots. Explore these
common roots, and how they diverged into such differing ideologies.
- It is sometimes said that the nature of the Weimar Republic left Germany vulnerable to Nazi
attack. Do you agree? Study the history of the Republic and the nature of its constitution in
attempting to deal with this issue.
- The term "Nazi" was derived from the German word Nationalsozialistische. Was the Nazi
movement really "socialistic" in character?
- Compare the actualities of the Bolshevik revolution in Russia with Marx's theory of
- Study the conflict between Stalin and Trotsky. Try to determine to what extent it was
ideological and to what extent personal.
- Read one of the major examples of literature mentioned in the chapter. Analyze its
philosophical implications, trying to determine what view it presents of human nature, human
relations, and humanity's place in the universe.
- Explore disillusionment as a theme in early-twentieth-century Western culture. Examine the
extent to which it influenced writers and artists. You might wish to speculate on the impact of
their works on popular attitudes, and the possible ways in which their works mirrored such