Events that change Nations - P4-db - Essay Example

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The two decades of peace between the world wars were witness to extraordinary events that affected not only certain people but also entire nations on both sides of the Atlantic. Some of these events were not necessarily all bad. With that in mind and aside from World War II,…
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The two decades of peace between the world wars were witness to extraordinary events that affected not only certain people but also entire nations onboth sides of the Atlantic. Some of these events were not necessarily all bad. With that in mind and aside from World War II, what event do you think had a significant impact, positive or negative, on the people and society of the 1920s and 1930s? Please provide an example with your response.
The relatively peaceful two decades sandwiched between the two World Wars yielded significant achievement in terms of international economy and trade. The lack of conflict and the breakdown of national economies that came in the aftermath of the First World War, forced nations to repair the damage and this is why economic science flourished. As a result, several economic models, theories and principles were introduced. I would cite two important developments that have contributed significantly to the course of modern history: the Keynesian economic tradition; and, the emergence of postwar globalization.
Keynesian Tradition
The events in 1920s and 1930s such as the high postwar inflation rates, the instability of stock prices, unemployment, tariff dynamics, and so forth occupied John Maynard Keynes and shaped his economic ideas. Keynes was involved in the major events of his time and would be pivotal in the development of modern economic thought afterwards. According to Alan Meltzer (1988), today, if one looks back and examine Keynes works, he or she would be struck by the labored arguments and definitions that are very much applicable today. (p. 18) In reading his works, for instance, we are able to see how Keynes predicted problems, failures, and impending disasters including the possible solutions for governments. The realizations of Keynes’ predictions influenced the modern economic thought and, certainly, his reputation so much so that governments used his ideas to guide their economic policies today. One could see this in the recent policies of British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and US President Barack Obama in their strategies to rescue their respective economies from current global financial crisis.
The second important development during the 1920s and the 1930s was the emergence of globalization. During this period, traces of globalization started to emerge as countries started the initiatives to enforce tariff truce as well as agreement that would regulate quotas and other restrictions. When the Reciprocal Trade Agreements Act of 1934 or Tasca 1934 was enacted by several European countries, a trend towards liberalization began. A description of experience was mentioned by Keynes in his work, The Economic Consequences of the Peace (1920):
What an extraordinary episode in the progress of man… the inhabitant of London could order by telephone, sipping his morning tea in bed, the various products of the whole earth… he could at the same time and by the same means venture his wealth in the natural resource and new enterprise of any quarter of the world. (p. 11)
Of course, there are marked differences between the earlier postwar globalization and the one that we have today since ours is a deeper global integration. But the fact remains: the groundwork for the globalization, which has so radically changed not just the global trade but the way we live our lives today, has been established during this time.
And so, economic science flourished during the 1920s and 1930s as the world was in a mad scramble to remedy the economic consequences of the First World War and to face the growing modernization of trade with the rise in inter-state trade relationship. The evolution of the economic thought that emerged during the period contributed to the new dynamics of wealth and, consequently, power in the global stage today.
Keynes, John Maynard. (2006). The Economic Consequence of Peace. Cosimo, Inc.
Meltzer, Allan. (1988). Keyness monetary theory: a different interpretation. Cambridge University Press. Read More
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