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Lecture 29

History 1401E Lecture Notes - Lecture 29: Benito Mussolini, National Socialist Program, Giacomo Matteotti

Course Code
HIS 1401E
Pierre Reynard

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EUROPE 1920-1930
1. Economic Difficulties
a. Inflation, caused primarily by borrowing to pay for the war and, in case of
Germany, the need to pay reparation
a.i. The losers not only had to pay for the war
a.i.1. Everyone that had savings lost their savings
a.i.1.a. People that had actually property were fine and the
people that had borrowed money to buy land did not have
to pay as much back as they had borrowed
a.i.1.b. The losers were the ones that had fixed incomes,
savings, pensions
a.i.1.b.i. This group could no longer afford to educate their
children and went from being considered middle
class to working class
b. Other causes of inflation and economic difficulties
b.i. Impoverishment by the war, disruption of pre-war existing economic life
by the creation of new political units, disrupting existing patterns of trade
b.i.1. People had to spend their money as soon as they got paid
due to the decreasing value of the currency
b.i.1.a. Factories that had produced goods for a large area
were now finding themselves out of the market
2. Ethnic Conflicts
a. Abroad and at home
a.i. Ethnic groups in Eastern Europe were mixed together
a.i.1. There were no clear borders between the groups
a.i.1.a. There were border disputes between states about
what group belonged to what country
a.i.2. Ethnic differences in the countries led to conflict
a.i.3. The war had intensified ethnic hatred in Europe
a.i.3.a. This hatred grew worse due to the new borders that
were created
3. Political Divisions
a. Both the left and the right rejected parliamentary government
a.i. The war had left bitterness directed at existing governments
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a.i.1. More radical left wing groups developed after the war
a.i.1.a. They were inspired by Lenin and the Bolshevik
revolution and this effected Germany, Hungary, and other
a.ii. The Soviet Union created a group that was designed to encourage
communist revolutions around the world
b. Conflicts between regions, and urban and rural areas, and over ethnic rights
b.i. Instead of just having a few political parties, different ethnic groups
formed their own parties which led to dozens of parties in each nation
b.i.1. There was also an increase in right wing parties
b.i.1.a. They adopted many policies of the Socialist parties
b.i.1.a.i. They used many techniques of the left while
reworking the right wing policies
4. Failures of Parliamentary Government
a. Fragmentation of political parties prevents the formation of durable and
responsible governments
a.i. Monarchies outlawed political parties
a.i.1. Members of opposing political parties were arrested
a.i.1.a. Only Czechoslovakia was able to maintain a stable
German inflation 1923
**note that Mrd translates as billions
and Billionen as trillions
The Great Depression
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