1. Why did both the Soviet Union and the United States become involved in a war in Korea in the early 1950s? What was the outcome of the war?
  2. What factors led to the establishment of a military dictatorship in Indonesia?
  3. Summarize the stages of U.S. involvement in the Vietnam conflict under Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon.
  4. Why did the withdrawal of U.S. troops after 1975 not bring peace to Indochina? How did old rivalries resurface? What new rivalries were created?
  5. How was superpower rivalry illustrated by the Korean War, the war in Vietnam, and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan?
  6. What were the causes behind the protests of young people in France and the United States in the 1960s and 1970s?
  7. What were the main issues fueling the women's movement of the postwar years?
  8. Summarize the differences between the approaches of Martin Luther King., Jr., and Malcolm X to the problem of black rights.
  9. What similarities and what difference do you see between the postwar youth, women's, and black movements?
  10. What were the causes of Western economic stagnation in the late 1960s and beyond? How did these causes differ from the causes of economic difficulties in eastern Europe?
  11. How did the governments of Margaret Thatcher and Fran‡ois Mitterand differ in their attempts to direct economic recovery in Britain and France, respectively?
  12. Why were neither governments of the Right nor those of the Left able to solve economic problems of the postwar era?
  13. How do you account for the worldwide spread of terrorism in recent decades? What historical and political factors have helped motivate specific terrorist acts?
  14. What was the nature of the reforms that Mikhail Gorbachev sought to promote in the Soviet Union, both in the government and in the Communist party? What were the chief obstacles confronting his reform program?
  15. How did glasnost affect relations between the Soviet Union and its satellite states?
  16. The economy of East Germany was one of the most prosperous in eastern Europe. How, then, do you account for the rapid pace of unification with West Germany in 1989 and 1990?
  17. How do you explain the rapid collapse of communist dictatorships in eastern Europe in the late 1980s?
  18. What problems were created by the rapid disintegration of the Soviet Union? How did Boris Yeltsin and other leaders attempt to deal with these problems?
  19. What have been some of the obstacles to peace and stability in the West following the dramatic changes of the late 1980s and 1990s?
  20. How did the conflict in the former Yugoslavia demonstrate the limits of the United Nations' ability to preclude or control conflict?
  1. Explore the problems of racial integration in Europe, and the prospects for their resolution.
  2. Read some of the writings of the Czech playwright-turned-president V clav Havel. What motivated him to accept the presidency of post-communist Czechoslovakia? How did the experience of living under a communist regime affect his thinking about politics, art, and the relationship between the two?
  3. Investigate any of the following:
      a. Mikhail Gorbachev's reform program
      b. Factors prompting the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and those leading to its end
      c. Ethnic conflicts within the U.S.S.R.
      d. The civil war in Cambodia/Kampuchea
      e. The life and thought of Martin Luther King, Jr.


W.W. Norton
REVIEW: World Civilizations
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