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Paper 2 Topics
Year 2 Works Cited
Year 2 Reading Notes
Single Party State Leadership
IB History Timeline
Historical Investigation 2010-2011
Historical Investigation 2012

Year 1


Peacemaking, peacekeeping— international relations 1918-36

(Prescribed Subject 1 for Paper 1)


This prescribed subject addresses international relations from 1918 to 1936 with emphasis on the Paris Peace Settlement—its making, impact and problems of enforcement—and attempts during the period to promote collective security and international cooperation through the League of Nations and multilateral agreements (outside the League mechanism), arms reduction and the pursuit of foreign policy goals without resort to violence. The prescribed subject also requires consideration of the extent to which the aims of peacemakers and peacekeepers were realized and the obstacles to success. Areas on which the source-based questions will focus are:

Interwar years: conflict and cooperation 1919-39

(HL option 5: Aspects of the history of Europe and the Middle East - for Papers 2 and 3 )


This section deals with the period between the two World Wars and the attempts to promote international cooperation and collective security. Obstacles to cooperation, such as post-war revisionism, economic crises and challenges to democracy and political legitimacy in Italy, Germany and Spain respectively, all require examination and consideration. The policies of the right-wing regimes and the responses of democratic states are also the focus of this section.

The Soviet Union and Eastern Europe 1924-2000

(HL option 5: Aspects of the history of Europe and the Middle East - for Papers 2 and 3 )


This section deals with the consolidation of the Soviet state from 1924 and the methods applied to ensure its survival, growth and expansion inside and outside the borders of the Soviet Union. Bolshevik rule under Lenin, the rise and nature of the rule of Stalin, Khrushchev, Brezhnev and the policies and practice of Sovietization (post-1945) in Central and Eastern Europe are areas for examination. East–West relations post-1945 in relation to Soviet aims and leadership should also be considered.
  • Stalin (1924-53): power struggle; collectivization and industrialization; Five Year Plans; constitution; cult of personality; purges; impact on society; foreign relations to 1941
  • The Great Patriotic War : breakdown of wartime alliance; Cold War; policies towards Germany: Berlin; Eastern European satellite states; Warsaw Pact
  • Khrushchev (1955-64): struggle for power after Stalin’s death; destalinization; peaceful coexistence; domestic policies: economic and agricultural; foreign relations: Hungary, Berlin, Cuba, China
  • Brezhnev: domestic and foreign policies
  • Case study of one Sovietized/satellite state: establishment of Soviet control; the nature of the single- party state; domestic policies; opposition and dissent (suitable examples could be East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Poland but all relevant states are valid)
  • Transformation of Soviet Union: political developments and change (1982-2000)

Year 2


War and change in the Middle East 1914-49

(HL option 5: Aspects of the history of Europe and the Middle East - for Papers 2 and 3 )

This section deals with the impact of the First World War upon the Middle East and examines the significance of the Arab revolt militarily and politically as well as the effects of Allied diplomacy on the region’s development. The unit requires consideration of post-war territorial and political rearrangements in the region, whether in the form of mandates or the establishment of independent states, as well as the emergence of movements for national regeneration. The question of the Palestine Mandate, including British administration and policies and the origins and development of the Arab–Jewish dispute up to 1948, is a particular area of focus.

  • Paris Peace Settlement: territorial and political impact on the region; the mandate system: British and French administration in Iraq, Transjordan, Syria and Lebanon
Paper 3 outlines: Non-Palestine Mandates

Paper 3 outlines: Palestine Mandate 1919-1939
Paper Outlines: 1948 War
  • Atatürk and the Turkish Republic: aims and policies 1919-38; impact on Turkish society; successes and failures
  • Iran and Reza Khan 1924-41: establishment and nature of the regime; attempts to modernize; Western influences
  • Saudi Arabia and Ibn Saud 1932-1949: establishment and nature of the regime; role of religion in the state; economic and social policies
  • Related Topics: Zionism

Mr. Hinze and Mr. Griffin
IB History-isms
The Democratic Republic of the International Baccalaureate

The Arab–Israeli conflict 1945-79

(Prescribed Subject 2 for Paper 1)

This prescribed subject addresses the development of the Arab–Israeli conflict from 1945 to 1979. It also requires consideration of the role of outside powers in the conflict either as promoters of tension or mediators in attempts to lessen tensions in the region. The prescribed subject requires study of the political, economic and social issues behind the dispute and the specific causes and consequences of the military clashes between 1948-9 and 1973. The nature and extent of social and economic developments within the disputed territory of Palestine/Israel within the period and their impact on the populations should also be studied. The end date for the prescribed subject is 1979 with the signing of the Egyptian–Israeli peace agreement. Areas on which the source-based questions will focus are:
  • last years of the British Mandate; UNSCOP partition plan and the outbreak of civil war
  • British withdrawal; establishment of Israel; Arab response and 1948/49 war
  • demographic shifts: the Palestinian diaspora 1947 onwards; Jewish immigration and the economic
  • development of the Israeli state
  • Suez Crisis of 1956 : role of Britain, France, the United States, the USSR, Israel and the UNO
Suez Crisis Paper 1

Post-war developments in the Middle East 1945-2000

(HL option 5: Aspects of the history of Europe and the Middle East - for Papers 2 and 3 )

This section deals with the issues of nationalism, communalism, modernization and westernization in the Middle East post-1945. It requires examination of the issues of domestic reforms and the extent to which they proved acceptable and/or successful in achieving their aims, as well as consideration of the influence of outside interference on developments within the region generally or in specific states. Relationships between Arab states and the relationship of Arab states (individually and/or collectively) with Israel following the war of 1973 should also be investigated.
  • Egypt under Nasser , Sadat and Mubarak: nature of the state; political developments; economic and social policies
  • Modernization and Westernization under Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi in Iran: impact of Western influence; White Revolution; nature of society; 1979 Revolution
  • Lebanon: civil wars, outside interference and reconstruction; confessional state; economic tensions; growth of militias and PLO
  • Pan-Arabism: the UAR and the search for Arab leadership and unity; short-lived nature of UAR; longer-term impact on Islamic unity
  • The Arab world and Israel: uneasy relations and conflicts; attempts at peacemaking; tensions caused by consequences of conflict (Occupied Territories, Intifada)
  • Case study of one Middle Eastern state (excluding Egypt): the nature of the government; domestic policies; opposition and dissent (suitable examples could be Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria or any other relevant state)