New Release: IB History Paper 2 Authoritarian States: Italy 1914–1945

We are pleased to announce the release of a new title in the OSC IB Study & Revision Guide series, the latest and final instalment in our 20th century World History books exploring the rise of Authoritarian States. IB History Paper 2 Authoritarian States: Italy 1914–1945 This revision guide supports exam preparation for IBDP History Paper 2 Topic 10: Authoritarian States, using Fascist Italy (1914–1945) as a discrete example. With guidance on writing essays to achieve top marks, it provides a focused account ...

The Depths of Despair: Long Winters and their Effect on History

General Winter by Louis Bombled (1862–1927), via Wikimedia Commons In this era where there is a lot of talk about the climate and its effect on our lives, and as a signal of what we have done to the planet we inhabit, it is also worthwhile to discuss its effect on history. There are several notable situations that had repeated impact on historical events, most notably in Russia.  It was in a Russian winter that Napoleon's forces were halted and nearly ...

New Release: IB History Paper 2 Authoritarian States: China 1911–1976

We are pleased to announce the release of a new title in the OSC IB Study & Revision Guide series, the latest instalment in our 20th century World History books exploring the rise of Authoritarian States. IB History Paper 2: Authoritarian States: China 1911–1976 This revision guide supports exam preparation for IBDP History Paper 2, Topic 10: Authoritarian States, using Mao’s China (1911–1976) as a discrete example. Closely structured around the syllabus, it charts the emergence of the Communist state in China, the ...

Halifax Explosion of December 1917: The Effect of War on the Home Front

There are certain subjects which warrant treatment of the subject even if they do not fit neatly into the envelope of the IB Subject Guide.  One such example of this is the collision of the SS Mont Blanc and the SS Imo on 6 December 1917. The Mont Blanc was a French ship loaded with ammunition in New York City that was sent up to Halifax, Nova Scotia, to join an convoy  across the Atlantic. At dawn on 6 December it ...

Silent Night

In this week, when few are in school, and many are on break for a number of reasons, it seemed worthwhile to consider traditions.  Now, Eric Hobsbawm talked about the invention of traditions in his book of the same name, but he was thinking about something slightly different: he was considering how, in the act of nation building (and not in the Kennedy-esque US way), that people create stories and customs about the past that are more nostalgia, and that have limited relationship to the past.  On the ...

Happy Anniversary – or when is Wednesday?

Soviet-era propaganda poster On October 25 1917 the Bolsheviks seized power in Petrograd, beginning the process of Communist control in what would become the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.  Based on that information alone, most would think that we are currently marking the centennial of the revolution, but. we aren't really. As students of Russian history know, the Tsars followed the Julian calendar while most of Europe followed (and continue to follow) the Gregorian calendar.  The change was evolutionary in nature, ...

Rights and Protest: 60 years since the Little Rock 9 entered Central High School

When I opened the paper today (yes, some of us still do that), there was a brief interview with some of the members of the Little Rock 9.  60 years ago today, 9 African-American teenagers entered Central High School, in Little Rock, Arkansas, USA, in a bid to begin the end of segregation in education.  If you look at the photo of the students that the Associated Press/Fox News used in its article, you see a group of pleasant, well-dressed young people on ...

The 6 key IB history concepts through the lens of current US interest in World War I

If you have studied the First World War as an IB student, the importance of this war is not lost on you.  World War I sowed the seeds of communist revolution in Russia, independence in Ireland, decolonization in much of the world, and a change in the international perception of a number of countries. 2014 marked the beginning of the centennial for most of the belligerents involved in the war, and this has led to a renewed interest and reconsideration of ...

Are you new to DP History?

By Wednesday, August 23, 2017 No tags 1

For those of you who are entering DP Year I there may be a degree of trepidation about what is to come.  There are plenty of websites and blogs out there that are dedicated to 'telling you like it is', which usually comes in the form of fear-mongering with a healthy dose of sarcasm.  There are countless aphorisms, the most famous of which, in historical circles, is "the wisdom of the IB is that students are given 2 hours to ...

The espionage act of 1917 and opposition to the First World War in North America

On June 15, 1917 the US Congress passed the Espionage Act which, while modified over the years, has remained in tact as legislation for a century.  This Act addressed key concerns from that point in time: 'interference' in military recruitment interception of materials considered seditious or treasonous by the US Postmaster prohibited the transference of information to a foreign agent that may could hinder the US war effort Passing the legislation was not at all surprising or unusual; all European countries had ...