Bénézet's book The World War and What was Behind It (1918) blamed on German aggression combined with perceived threats to the traditional social order from radicals and ethnic nationalists.
Straight after the war Allied historians argued that Germany was solely responsible for the start of the war; a view reinforced by the inclusion of 'war guilt' clauses within the Treaty of Versailles.
In 1919, the German diplomat and former Chancellor Bernhard von Bülow went through the German archives to suppress any documents that might show that Germany was responsible for the war and to ensure that only documents that were exculpatory (favorable to the defendant, in this case, Germany) might be seen by historians.
As a result of Bülow's efforts, between 1923–27 the German Foreign Ministry published forty volumes of documents, which as the German-Canadian historian Holger Herwig noted were carefully edited to promote the idea that the war was not the fault of one nation but were rather the result of the breakdown of international relations.
The few German historians in the 1920s such as Hermann Kantorowicz who argued that Germany was responsible for the war, found that the Foreign Ministry went out of its way to stop their work from being published and tried to have him fired from his post at Kiel University.
Try to avoid topics that already have too much written about them (i.e., "eating disorders and body image among adolescent women") or that simply are not important (i.e. These topics may lead to a thesis that is either dry fact or a weird claim that cannot be supported.
A good thesis falls somewhere between the two extremes.
To arrive at this point, ask yourself what is new, interesting, contestable, or controversial about your topic.
As you work on your thesis, remember to keep the rest of your paper in mind at all times.
Sometimes your thesis needs to evolve as you develop new insights, find new evidence, or take a different approach to your topic.
This means that you cannot include everything you've learned about your topic, nor should you go off in several directions.
If you end up covering too many different aspects of a topic, your paper will sprawl and be unconvincing in its argument, and it most likely will not fulfull the assignment requirements.
For the sample assignment above, both Spain's neutrality and World War II are topics far too broad to explore in a paper.
You may instead decide to focus on Franco's role in the diplomatic relationships between the Allies and the Axis, which narrows down what aspects of Spain's neutrality and World War II you want to discuss, as well as establishes a specific link between those two aspects.
Before you go too far, however, ask yourself whether your topic is worthy of your efforts.
Holocaust Essay This World War II period made an enormous impact on the direction that was taken by the social relations between Jews and other nations.
Holocaust divided the lives of Jews into three periods: before, during and after it, which showed how hard was its hit.
Cats have nine lives, but we - we're less than cats, we got three.
The life before, the life during, the life after"(Joselit, 1995 p.1)Anne Michaels Fugitive Pieces essay This is primary due to the fact that it reflects one of the major issues of the World War II the victims of the Holocaust.
This is the story about a tragedy of all those people whose life has never been the same after the World War II; a story about the points of view of the event from the point of view of the representatives of two different generations. These diaries are discovered by a young professor named Ben that is very interested in knowing the biography of people that went through the World War II.
You'll want to read your assignment carefully, looking for key terms that you can use to focus your topic.
After you've identified the key words in your topic, the next step is to read about them in several sources, or generate as much information as possible through an analysis of your topic.
Obviously, the more material or knowledge you have, the more possibilities will be available for a strong argument.
For the sample assignment above, you'll want to look at books and articles on World War II in general, and Spain's neutrality in particular.
As you consider your options, you must decide to focus on one aspect of your topic.
Your topic is the subject about which you will write.
Your assignment may suggest several ways of looking at a topic; or it may name a fairly general concept that you will explore or analyze in your paper.
Below are some possible topics based on sample assignments. Franco's role in the diplomatic relationships between the Allies and the Axis This topic avoids generalities such as "Spain" and "World War II," addressing instead on Franco's role (a specific aspect of "Spain") and the diplomatic relations between the Allies and Axis (a specific aspect of World War II).
Analyze one of Homer's epic similes in the (warfare being a major theme in that work).
Your assignment may suggest several ways of looking at a topic, or it may name a fairly general concept that you will explore or analyze in your paper.
Why is Anne Michaels novel Fugitive Pieces considered to be one of the most prominent books of the XX century? In what way does the book become a bridge between two different generations?