The Inter-War Years
As the first world war came to an end the great powers set out to ensure that such a conflict would never happen again. With varying thoughts and approaches to the defeated central powers, a series of peace treaties were drawn up. Accompanied by a League of Nations to arbitrate on disputes and work on a wide ranging series of initiatives to promote togetherness, there was an aim, encapsulated in Woodrow Wilson’s 14 points, of a lasting peace.
From the outset, this aim of a peaceful post war world was challenged. As the old order gave way to new types of government there was uncertainty, instability and challenge to authority. Financially many countries were crippled by the debts incurred by the attrition of the first world war. Schemes such as the Dawes Plan set out to ease debts and help Europe recover. In some ways and for periods of time their was sign of hope. Culturally there was something of a renaissance with art flourishing in the 20’s and the Jazz Age signalling an entirely different way of socialising.
However, despite glimmers of hope and signs of prosperity there was a dark undercurrent of unrest and despair throughout the era.