Interpreting the Causes of the Second World War Essay

Interpreting the Causes of the Second World War
An evaluation of the various approaches to identifying the causes of the Second World War.
# 154033 | 4,097 words | 1 source | 2014 | CA
Published by on Oct 17, 2014 in History (European - World Wars)

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From the Paper:

"This paper examines the various approaches to interpreting the causes of the Second World War that have emerged in the writings of historians over the nearly three-quarters of a century that have elapsed since the end of the war. It identifies three major approaches: (1) The Single Paradigm Approach; (2) the Personal Bias Approach; and (3) the Face Value Approach. After evaluating each approach and pointing out its weaknesses and shortcomings, the paper proceeds to offer a fourth approach, which it characterizes as the Integrative Approach. This approach seeks to integrate the insights gained from the other three approaches and combine them to form a robust method by which to understand the factors that contributed to the outbreak of the Second World War. In formulating this approach the paper appeals to A. J. P. Taylor's distinction between general causes and specific causes, as well as to Aristotle's distinction between necessary and sufficient conditions. The integrative approach sees several necessary conditions acting together to create the end result, with no single factor constituting a sufficient condition. The approach dispenses with the idea of a single "root cause" and recommends objectivity in dealing with the evidence. The paper concludes with the observation that the integrative approach is the only method that is capable of providing a sound analysis of the causes of the Second World War."

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