October: site update, an anniversary and fake news

Wednesday 23 October 2019

Site update

We are pleased to announce that two new units have been started on the site.

For Paper 3, Asia and Oceania region, we are now adding Topic 07; Challenges to traditional East Asian societies (1700 - 1868)

Topic 07. Challenges to traditional East Asian societies (1700 - 1868)

This section focuses on the challenges faced by both imperial China and Japan from the mid-18th Century to the mid-19th Century as they dealt with domestic economic, political and social strains and also...

For Paper 2, we have started the Topic on Early Modern Wars with the case study of the Thirty Years' War

Topic 06. Causes and effects of Early Modern wars (1500-1750)

This topic investigates the causes, practices and effects of Early Modern wars.The study of each war needs to follow the three areas of 'prescribed content' and the themes identifies within each area....


Both topics will be added to over the next few weeks. The Thirty Years War case study should be finished in the next week or so and we hope to add the English Civil War as another case study next month.

In addition, two new source papers have been added to PS3 Move to Global War, one for each case study. 

5. PS3: Full source papers Case Study 1

On this page you will find full source papers and mark schemes for Case Study 1 on Japanese expansionism in East Asia (1931 - 1941)

6. PS3: Full source papers Case Study 2

On this page you will find full source papers and mark schemes for Case Study 2 on German and Italian expansion (1933 1 1941)

Many students are intersted in consiparacy theories and we did a TOK page on conspiracy theories back in August. We have now added another TOK page to expand on this topic with an interesting video on how to spot a conspiracy theory - and also the impact of fake news on historians.

The art of disinformation (October 2019)

This page follows on from our page this summer on The Moon Landings and conspiracy theories; now we are digging a bit deeper in terms of the reasons for, and the tactics used to create fake news/disinformation/conspiracy...



The anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall is approaching and so there are many good articles and interviews around at the moment. Here is an article and video from the BBC discussing the role of the events in October in Liepzig 1989.

The march that KO'd communism (BBC News)

A giant anti-communist protest in Leipzig in October 1989 doomed the East German state.

Other interesting issues in the news:

For students studying the Spanish Civil War, this article is a reminder that the impact of the war is still felt today::

Why Spain is digging up a dictator (BBC News)

Franco's burial site has long been the subject of debate. Here's why the saga could end this week.

And this is an interesting follow up to events in Rwanda for those of you studying PS5 for Paper 1:

The radio show which brought children back from the dead (BBC News)

How the BBC helped to find thousands of children who got lost during the Rwandan genocide.

(All of the above articles/videos have been added to the relevant pages on the site) 

Interesting websites and articles

This is an excellent site called ‘Issues and Controversies in American History’’. It sets out the context of each issue and gives both sides of the debate as well as links to primary sources.

For those of you in the UK who have not had enough of  Brexit and its many facets – here is another article considering historial parallels:

Are There Any Meaningful Historical Analogies for Brexit? | History Today (www.historytoday.com)

There has been no shortage of historical events put forward to explain Britain’s current political crisis, but do any of them seriously inform debate?


And finally a couple of recent history books that we have recently enjoyed:

The world almost ended in 1983 (The Economist)

A new history of a terrifyingly close shave with nuclear Armageddon

Why American Pragmatists Saved Postwar Europe (www.nytimes.com)

Benn Steil’s “The Marshall Plan” depicts the complicated politics and colorful cast of statesmen, spies and economists behind America’s intervention in midcentury Europe.



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