The Inter War Years 1919 - 1939




23 tutorials available 23 tutorials total

The Inter War Years are a fascinating period of history, swinging from "never again" to the start of another World War. Our Inter War Years GCSE podcast series not only brings this alive but also sets out everything you will need to know for both your coursework and your exams. Starting from the end of World War 1 it examines the Peace Treaties and how fair they were, whether or not the League of Nations was successful and why international peace had collapsed by 1939. Each podcast will help address these questions and give you enough detail to help prepare for your exams and keep on top of your coursework.

Tutors for this module

Roy Huggins


Curriculum Leader of Ebacc
Mexborough Academy

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Key Question 1: Were the peace treaties of 1919–1923 fair?

The first of the key questions you are required to answer for the Inter War Years module for OCR GCSE is were the peace treaties fair? The key elements you should think abput are:

  • What were the motives and aims of the Big Three at Versailles?
  • Why did the victors not get everything they wanted?
  • What were the immediate reactions to the peace settlement?
  • Could the treaties be justified at the time?

The specified content includes the peace treaties of 1919–1923 (Versailles, St Germain, Trianon, Sèvres and Lausanne); the roles of individuals such as Wilson, Clemenceau and Lloyd George in the peacemaking process; the immediate reactions to, and opinions about, the treaties, especially in Britain, France, Germany and the USA.

Key Question 2: To what extent was the League of Nations a success?

  • What were the aims of the League?
  • How successful was the League in the 1920s?
  • How far did weaknesses in the League’s organisation make failure inevitable?
  • How far did the Depression make the work of the League more difficult?
  • Why did the League fail over Manchuria and Abyssinia?

The specified content includes the aims of the League, its strengths and weaknesses in structure and organisation; successes and failures in peacekeeping during the 1920s; disarmament; the work of the Court of International Justice; the ILO and the Special Commissions; the impact of the World Depression on the work of the League after 1929; the failures of the League in Manchuria and Abyssinia.

Key Question 3: Why had international peace collapsed by 1939?

  • What were the long-term consequences of the peace treaties of 1919–1923?
  • What were the consequences of the failures of the League in the 1930s?
  • How far was Hitler’s foreign policy to blame for the outbreak of war in 1939?
  • Was the policy of appeasement justified?
  • How important was the Nazi-Soviet Pact?
  • Why did Britain and France declare war on Germany in September 1939?

The specified content includes the collapse of international order in the 1930s; the increasing militarism of Germany, Italy and Japan; Hitler’s foreign policy up to 1939; the Saar, remilitarisation of the Rhineland, Austria, Czechoslovakia and Poland; the Nazi-Soviet Pact; appeasement and the outbreak of war in September 1939.

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