Timeline of the 20th century Map of the British Empire as of At its height, it was the largest empire in history.
Timeline of the 20th century Map of the British Empire as of At its height, it was the largest empire in history. Nationalism became a major political issue in the world in the 20th century, acknowledged in international law along with the right of nations to self-determinationofficial decolonization in the mid-century, and related regional conflicts.
The century saw a major shift in the way that many people lived, with changes in politics, ideology, economics, society, culture, science, technology, and medicine.
The 20th century may have seen more technological and scientific progress than all the other centuries combined since the dawn of civilization. Terms like ideologyworld wargenocideand nuclear war entered common usage. Scientific discoveries, such as the theory of relativity and quantum physicsprofoundly changed the foundational models of physical science, forcing scientists to realize that the universe was more complex than previously believed, and dashing the hopes or fears at the end of the 19th century that the last few details of scientific knowledge were about to be filled in.
It was a century that started with horsessimple automobiles, and freighters but ended with high-speed railcruise shipsglobal commercial air travel and the Space Shuttle.
These developments were made possible by the exploitation of fossil fuel resources, which offered energy in an easily portable form, but also caused concern about pollution and long-term impact on the environment. Humans explored space for the first time, taking their first footsteps on the Moon.
Advancements in medical technology also improved the health of many people: Rapid technological advancements, however, also allowed warfare to reach unprecedented levels of destruction. World War II alone killed over 60 million people, while nuclear weapons gave humankind the means to annihilate itself in a short time.
However, these same wars resulted in the destruction of the imperial system. For the first time in human history, empires and their wars of expansion and colonization ceased to be a factor in international affairs, resulting in a far more globalized and cooperative world.
The last time major powers clashed openly was inand since then, violence has seen an unprecedented decline. Summary[ edit ] Technological advancements during World War I changed the way war was fought, as new inventions such as tankschemical weaponsand aircraft modified tactics and strategy.
After more than four years of trench warfare in western Europe, and 20 million dead, the powers that had formed the Triple Entente FranceBritainand Russialater replaced by the United States and joined by Italy and Romania emerged victorious over the Central Powers GermanyAustria-Hungarythe Ottoman Empire and Bulgaria.
In addition to annexing much of the colonial possessions of the vanquished states, the Triple Entente exacted punitive restitution payments from them, plunging Germany in particular into economic depression.
Ukraine, early days of the Nazi invasion. Meanwhile, Japan had rapidly transformed itself into a technologically advanced industrial power. After some years of dramatic military success, Germany was defeated inhaving been invaded by the Soviet Union and Poland from the east and by the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Free France from the west.
The war ended with the dropping of two atomic bombs on Japan. Japan later became a western ally with an economy based on the manufacture of consumer goods and trade.
Germany was divided between the Western powers West Germany and the Soviet Union ; all areas recaptured by the Soviet Union East Germany and eastward became Soviet puppet states under communist rule.
Meanwhile, Western European countries were influenced by the American Marshall Plan and made a quick economic recoverybecoming major allies of the United States under capitalist economies and relatively democratic governments. World War II left about 60 million people dead.
When the conflict ended inthe United States and the Soviet Union emerged as the major world powers. Allies during the war, they soon became hostile to one another as the competing ideologies of communism and democratic capitalism occupied Europe, divided by the Iron Curtain and the Berlin Wall.
The period was marked by a new arms race, and nuclear weapons were produced in the tens of thousands, sufficient to end most human life on the planet had a large-scale nuclear exchange ever occurred. The size of the nuclear arsenals is believed by many historians to have staved off war between the two, as the consequences were too great to bear.
The policy of massive nuclear attack, knowing a similar counterattack would be forthcoming, was called mutually assured destruction MAD. However, several proxy warssuch as the Korean War — and the Vietnam War —were waged as the United States implemented its worldwide " containment " policy against communism.
Albert Einstein is often regarded as the father of modern physics. American culture spread around the world with the advent of the Hollywood motion picture industryBroadwayrock and rollpop musicfast foodbig-box storesand the hip-hop lifestyle.
After the Soviet Union collapsed under internal pressure inthe communist governments of the Eastern bloc were dismantled, followed by awkward transitions into market economies.
It enacted resolutions on such topics as the conduct of warfare, environmental protection, international sovereigntyand human rights. Peacekeeping forces consisting of troops provided by various countries, with various United Nations and other aid agencies, helped to relieve famine, disease, and poverty, and to suppress some local armed conflicts.
Europe slowly united, economically and, in some ways, politically, to form the European Unionwhich consisted of 15 European countries by the end of the 20th century. In many countries, especially in Europe, the movement was channeled into politics through Green parties.
Increasing awareness of global warming began in the s, commencing decades of social and political debate. The computer is a major technological advancement in this century.
The nature of innovation and change[ edit ] Due to continuing industrialization and expanding trade, many significant changes of the century were, directly or indirectly, economic and technological in nature.Nov 15, · A New Look at August Sander’s ‘People of the Twentieth Century’ By James Estrin Nov.
15, Nov. 15, When August Sander conceived of the structure of his ambitious portrait series, “People of the Twentieth Century,” his goal was to document the German people in a way that rejected the era’s social divisions. Achievements in Public Health, Control of Infectious Diseases.
Deaths from infectious diseases have declined markedly in the United States during the 20th century ().This decline contributed to a sharp drop in infant and child mortality (1,2) and to the year increase in life expectancy (2). Top 10 engineering advancements of 21st century to The millenium’s inaugural years have ushered forth a momentum of discovery and creation that will set a new pace for decades to come.
The 20th century was the century of nationalism, mass democracy, large-scale industrialism, and developments in communication and information technology beyond the reach of any 19th-century imagination so far as magnitude is concerned.
The 20th century was a century that began on January 1, and ended on December 31, It was the tenth and final century of the 2nd millennium.
It is distinct from the century known as the s which began on January 1, and ended on December 31, Centuries: 19th century, 20th century, 21st century.
Technology, science, and inventions have progressed at an accelerated rate during the hundred years of the 20th century, more so than any other century. 20th Century Timeline - Search the site GO.