What is cultural diffusion? Give an example.
Cultural diffusion is the spread of elements of culture from the point of origin over an area. Most inventions, certainly the major inventions, spread across countries and the world through cultural diffusion. Inventions such as the telephone, electricity, the telegram, trains, steam engines, and the internet, originated in one place and spread across areas using a particular type of cultural diffusion known as expansion diffusion. This particular diffusion means that ideas spread throughout an area in a snowballing process so that the total number of people that know and the area where the idea is known increases. For example, inoculations dispersed throughout the United States and the world through expansion diffusion. Modern day inoculations began in England in the late 18th century with the initiation of the smallpox vaccine. After several successful vaccination cases in England, the process quickly diffused across the ocean to America. From there it spread across the Spanish and British empires, which in the late 18th century comprised a large portion of the world. Other inoculations were developed using the same process as the smallpox vaccine. These would also dispel throughout the world through expansion diffusion, snowballing from place to place.
What was the effect of the Treaty of Versailles on World War II?
The Treaty of Versailles was the surrender paper that was constructed by the Allied nations, mainly France and Britain, and given to Germany for their participation in World War I. In this agreement France and Britain instituted reparations against Germany to be paid to the Allied nations to rebuild what the war had destroyed. They considered Germany to be guilty of this destruction and insisted on excessive reparations. The Prime Ministers of Britain and France, David Lloyd George and Georges Clemenceau, wanted the Germans to pay for the carnage they had created. Despite U.S. President Woodrow Wilson's call for caution, Britain and France forced Germany to concede several pieces of land, all overseas colonies, as well as billions of dollars in payments. However, Germany had been significantly affected during the war and did not possess the means to make the reparation payments. Additionally, the Treaty enforced demilitarization of Germany, as well as Allied occupation of the Rhineland, an area of western Germany with exceptionally rich soil. After the signing of the treaty Germany was faced with many harsh realities: their loss of millions of civilians and soldiers, demilitarization, occupation of their richest soil, and significant loss of territory that provided large amounts of resources. While they tried to make payments to the Allies, they ended up having to ask for loans from the U.S. These loans served to entwine the German and American economies, thus when the stock market crashed in 1929 not only did America's economy fall, Germany's did as well. By 1932 Germans were no longer able to pay reparations to the Allies at all. These payments, coupled with skyrocketing inflation, soaring unemployment and political unrest led to the rise of the Nazi party. The Nazis blamed the Weimar Republic representatives who signed the Treaty for the loss of the war in Germany. The Nazis also claimed that the Weimar had stabbed the country in the back by signing the Treaty of Versailles. They also had a hand in coining the term November Criminals, as a reference to the representatives. Nazis, as well as other right wing extremists, claimed that these Criminals were Jewish. This claim, as well as an erroneous allegation that most Jews had kept desk jobs rather than combat positions during the war, led to antisemitic sentiments rising in Germany. These attitudes towards Jews were inflamed by the Nazis, leading to the ascent of Adolf Hitler and to his becoming Chancellor. Hitler's position as Chancellor enabled him to lead the Nazi invasion of Poland, which began World War II.
What is Manifest Destiny? What impact did it have on the expansion of the United States?
Manifest destiny was the general belief that the United States was destined to spread across the North American continent and stretch from ocean to ocean. It was this concept that justified many events that happened throughout the latter half of the 19th century. The California gold rush, the development and use of the Oregon Trail, the Mexican-American War, the forced migration of Indian tribes, the building and expansion of railroads, and the invasion and annexation of the Hawaiian Islands are just some of the events that resulted from the country's belief in manifest destiny. The forced migration of the Indian tribes is a good example to illustrate this doctrine. The migration came as a result in the ideology that white settlers were to inhabit the continent and prosper off it's bounty. They maintained that the Indians weren't using the land to it's fullest potential and were thus justified in taking it so that it could be properly utilized. In order to fulfill this desire for land, crops, and later on, cattle, the Indian tribes had to move. So they began to get pushed out of their homelands, farther and farther west, until that became insufficient. The tribes were still taking up too much, prosperous land. Also, the treaties the federal government had made with the various chiefs were just getting in everyone's way. They came up with the Reservation system as a permanent solution to the tribes, to get them off of the best land in the country once and for all.