Objective: The aim of this final assignment is for you to develop and explain your own overarching
interpretation of twentieth-century Europe from the Great War (1914-18) to the collapse of the Soviet
Union in 1991. Through your interpretation, you will communicate what you have taken away from
the second half of History 106.
Options: You must choose one of the follow four options as the basis for your interpretation of
twentieth-century Europe: (1) a single word; (2) a phrase; (3) a slogan/motto; or (4) an
illustration or other image, object, or artifact. Whichever option you choose, you must use it in
order to explain how and why it epitomizes your overarching interpretation of the twentieth century.
Scope: As you can see, there are many different pathways to developing and explaining your
overarching interpretation of twentieth-century Europe. The only requirement is that whichever
option you choose – your word, phrase, slogan, drawing, image, etc. – must be comprehensive
enough to cover all of Europe (east and west) for the entire era (1914 to 1991). You may not choose
a pathway that limits the geographic and/or temporal scope of your paper (e.g., analyzing the Soviet
Union only in the postwar era (1945-91); or concentrating only on Europe between the two world
wars (1919-39). In short, your interpretive idea needs to be big enough to epitomize twentieth century
Europe as a whole
Method: Your interpretation must be supported through an analysis of primary sources. For this
assignment, you are permitted to use any and all primary sources that have been assigned to you over
the last six weeks of the semester (between Weeks 8 and 13). I will add to these a collection of new
(previously unassigned) primary-source excerpts that you may also draw upon in order to develop
and explain your overarching interpretation of twentieth-century Europe. You will find these sources
on Canvas in a module dedicated to the final paper. Together, the combination of these familiar and
new sources will give you a wide array of sources to select from when writing your paper.
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