10th Grade Vocab


Abdicate: to give up rule.

Agribusinesses: giant commercial farms, often owned by multinational corporations.

Ahimsa: In Hinduism, it is the principal of non violence against all living things.

Allied Powers (WWII): Alliance of Great Britain, Soviet Union, United States, and France during World War II.

Allies (WWI): also known as the Triple Entente.  This alliance included Great Britain, France, and Russia.

Amritsar Massacre: April 3rd of 1919. British soldiers killed close to 400 unarmed Indian men, women, and children, and wounded 1,100 more. People had gathered in the center of town to protest British occupation of their country, and to demand equality. This was a turning point in British domination of India. Independence movements became very popular and eventually forced India’s independence.

Anti-Semitism: The hatred of people of Jewish descent.

Apartheid: System of legal racial segregation enforced by the South African government between 1948 and 1994.

Appeasement: The policy of pacifying an aggressive nation in the hopes of avoiding further conflict. (ex: Hitler and Germany prior to WWII)

Armistice: A truce during wartime.

Aryans: non-Jewish, blond-haired, blue-eyed physical ideal of Nazi Germany.

Assimilation: to take in and incorporate as one’s own; absorb another’s culture.

Austro-Prussian War: the war (1866) in which Prussia, Italy, and some minor German states opposed Austria, Saxony, Hanover, and the states of southern Germany.  Prussia was victorious.

Autarky: Hitler’s plan to follow a policy of national self-sufficiency with no reliance on imports or economic aid.

Axis Powers (WWII): Alliance of Germany, Italy, and Japan during World War II.


Balfour Declaration: A promise made by British Prime Minister Balfour in 1917 to create a homeland for the Jewish people

Bataan Death March: during WWII, the forced march of Filipino and American prisoners of war under brutal conditions by the Japanese military after they captured the Philippines.

Battle of Stalingrad: A major battle between German and Soviet troops in World War II.  The battle was fought in the winter of 1942–1943 and ended with the surrender of an entire German army. Stalingrad is considered a major turning point of the war in favor of the Allies.

Berlin Conference: (1884-1885) During European Imperialism, various European leaders met in Berlin, Germany to discuss plans for dividing Africa peacefully. These leaders had little regard for African independence, and had no representation for native Africans. This began the process of imperializing Africa.

Black Shirts: A member of a fascist party organization having a black shirt as part of its uniform, especially an Italian fascist.

Otto Von Bismarck: Appointed Prussian chancellor in 1862. he began a program of war to unify all the German states under the control of Prussia. His policy was known as Blüt und Eisen or Blood and Iron. He was the most powerful statesman in Europe as chancellor of the new German Empire from 1871 to 1890. He was known as the Iron Chancellor.

Black Hand: Serbian nationalist/terrorist group responsible for the assassination of Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand which resulted in the start of World War I.

Blitz: German bombing of London starting on September 7, 1940 and continuing for 57 straight nights with sporadic bombings lasting until May of 1941.

“Blood and Iron”: policy of Prussian chancellor Otto von Bismarck to unify all of Germany under Prussian control and build and expand it into a great empire. It is a very successful policy.

“Bloody Sunday”: (1905) an incident in St. Petersburg, Russia, where unarmed, peaceful demonstrators marching to present a petition to Czar Nicholas II were gunned down by the Imperial Guard.

Bolshevik: Early name of communists during the Russian Revolution of 1917.

Bourgeoisie: Term given to the middle class people in society.

Boxer Rebellion: (1900) A rebellion by the people of China to end foreign domination.


Capitalism: An economic system based on the private ownership of the means of production and distribution of goods. Also promotes a free market regulated by supply and demand.

Caste System: A rigid social class system in Hinduism.

Central Powers (WWI): During WWI it was the counties of Germany, Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire.

Chinese Revolution of 1911: revolution in China in 1911 which resulted in the overthrow of the Manchu dynasty and in the establishment of a republic in 1912 under the leadership of Sun Yixian.

Winston Churchill: (1874-1965) British politician and Prime Minster of Great Britain from 1940 to 1945, and 1951 to 1955. He is regarded as the finest British leader of the 20th century and was instrumental in leading Britain to victory during World War II.

Civil Disobedience: The purposeful breaking of laws to protest actions by the government.

Cold War: A state of tension and hostility between nations aligned with the United States on one side and the Soviet Union on the other; without armed conflict between the major rivals.

Collectives: A government owned farms where peasants work on a quota system.

Colony: a group of people who leave their native country to form in a new land a settlement subject to, or connected with, the parent nation.

Command Economy: an economic system controlled by a strong, centralized government, which usually focuses on industrial goods. With little attention paid to agriculture and consumer goods.

Communism: A system of government in which a single, totalitarian, party holds power. It is characterized by state control of the economy, and restriction on personal freedoms. It was first proposed by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels in The Communist Manifesto.

Computer Revolution: During the 1980s personal computers began to appear in many homes across the world. By the late 1990s, computers had become a staple in most industrialized country’s homes.

Concentration Camp: A prison camp used to hold Jews during World War II and the Holocaust.  Most were used to help Hitler reach “The Final Solution.”

Containment: Harry Truman’s policy stating that the U.S. would provide political, economic, or military assistance to any nation that is being threatened by communist forces.

Contras: a member of a counterrevolutionary guerrilla group in Nicaragua who fought against the Sandinistas.

Count Camillo Cavour: (1810-61) Prime Minister of Sardinia, a large Italian State. He formed alliances with other foreign powers to help end Austria’s and Spain’s control. He is instrumental in the unification of Italy.

Cuban Missile Crisis: (1961) Crises that developed as a result of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro’s decision to allow the Soviet Union to base nuclear missiles in Cuba. Upon discovery, the United States confronted the Soviet Union and demanded the missiles be removed. For nearly two weeks, nuclear war was imminent. Fortunately, diplomacy succeeded and crisis was averted.


Deforestation: The widespread destruction of the world’s forests. One of the largest areas of destruction are the tropical rainforests. These forests are cut down for the hardwood lumber, to clear space for farming, for building settlements, and for grazing animals.

Charles de Gaulle: headed the Free French Resistance to the Nazis in WWII from Britain and briefly served as president of France once the Nazi’s were driven out.

F.W. de Klerk: South African president from 1989 to 1994.  He was the last President of apartheid-era South Africa, but played a role in ending the system of segregation.  He released Mandela from prison in 1990 and shared the Nobel Peace Prize with Mandela in 1993.

Desertification: The process in which land slowly dries out until little or no vegetation exists becoming a desert.

Dictator: a single person with absolute power that rules a country or region.

Dirty War (Argentina): an offensive conducted by secret police or the military of a regime against revolutionary and terrorist insurgents and marked by the use of kidnapping and torture and murder with civilians often being the victims; “thousands of people disappeared and were killed during Argentina’s dirty war in the late 1970s.”

Domestic system: a manufacturing system whereby workers make products in their own homes with materials supplied by entrepreneurs.

Domino Theory:  The idea that countries bordering communist countries were in more danger of falling to communism unless the United States and other western nations worked to prevent it.


Easter Rebellion: a rebellion during Easter week in Ireland in 1916 by the Irish against British rule.  They hoped to form their own Irish republic.  It was unsuccessful.

Economic Dependence: one country relying on another country for goods and resources.

Victor Emmanuel II: (1820–78) King of Sardinia 1849–78; first king of Italy 1861–78.

Enclosure Movement: During the Industrial Revolution, it was the consolidation of many small farms into one large farm, which created a labor force as many people lost their homes.

Entrepreneur: a person who organizes and manages any enterprise, esp. a business, usually with considerable initiative and risk.


Factory system: a manufacturing method for a standardized product or products in which fixed capital, raw material, and labor operations are centralized and sophisticated machinery is often used

Fascism: A system of government that promotes extreme nationalism, repression, anticommunism, and is ruled by a dictator.

Archduke Franz Ferdinand: 1863-1914) Archduke of Austria, nephew to the Emperor. He was assassinated by Gavrilo Princip in Sarajevo, Bosnia in 1914. This resulted in the start of World War I.

Five-Year Plans: Stalin’s economic policy to rebuild the Soviet economy after World War II. Included massive industrialization and farm collectivization, where peasants lived collectively on government owned farms, often resulted in widespread famine as many peasants resisted this policy.

Four Modernizations:  Program created by Deng Xiaoping that emphasized agriculture, industry, science, and defense.  This program had some features of a free market economy, though China was still a Communist nation.  This program was considered a success, though it increased the gap between the poor and the rich.

Franco-Prussian War: the war between France and Prussia, 1870–71.  Prussia was victorious.

Fundamentalist: strict adherence to any set of basic ideas or principles.


Mohandas Gandhi: (1869-1948) Nationalist leader in India, who called for a non violent revolution to gain his country’s freedom from the British Empire. 

Genocide: The killing of all the people from a ethnic group, religious group, or people from a specific nation.

Gestapo: the German state secret police during the Nazi regime, organized in 1933 and notorious for its brutal methods and operations.

Ghetto: Term given to poor areas of town where Jews were sent during World War II.  Most famous is the Warsaw Ghetto.

Giuseppe Garibaldi: (1807-1882) Military leader whose Red Shirt army liberated most of southern Italy, before conquering the northern section. He was instrumental in the unification of Italy.

Glasnost: A policy of Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev which called for more openness with the nations of West, and a relaxing of restraints on Soviet citizenry.

Great Depression: (1929-1939) the dramatic decline in the world’s economy due to the United State’s stock market crash of 1929, the overproduction of goods from World War I, and decline in the need for raw materials from non industrialized nations. Results in millions of people losing their jobs as banks and businesses closed around the world. Many people were reduced to homelessness, and had to rely on government sponsored soup kitchens to eat. World trade also declined as many countries imposed protective tariffs in an attempt to restore their economies.

Great Leap Forward:  A Chinese Communist program from 1958 to 1960 to boost farm and industrial output that failed miserably.

Green Revolution:  Throughout the 20th century, scientists worked on improving agriculture, especially in areas with high populations. Some of the technologies developed included better irrigation systems so farmers could get water to their crops. New machinery was built to handle larger production and to take the burden of agriculture work off of humans. New chemical fertilizers and pesticides were created to increase food production, and new varieties of grains and livestock were developed also for greater production.

Gulag: the system of forced-labor camps in the Soviet Union.

Guomindang (Kuomintang):  A Chinese nationalist political party founded by Sun Yixian (Yat-sen) in 1912.  It controlled China until is overthrown by the communist in 1949.  Eventually becomes the ruling party of Taiwan under Jiang Jieshi (Chang Kai Shek)



Hamas: a Palestinian Islamic movement engaged in grass-roots organizing and terrorism against Israel.

Hiroshima: Japanese city devastated during World War II when the United States dropped the first atomic bomb on Aug 6th, 1945.

Holocaust: The attempted genocide of European Jews, Gypsies, mentally retarded, homosexuals, and others by Nazi Germany during the Second World War.

Human Rights: The rights that are considered by most societies to belong automatically to all people, including the rights to justice, freedom, and equality. 

Hutus: Ethnic group that lives mostly in Rwanda and Burundi.  They were the majority ethnic group in Rwanda, making up 85% of the population, though were subordinate to the Tutsis.  In 1994 the Hutus attacked the Tutsis and killed nearly 1 million Tutsis and pro-peace Hutus.


Imperialism: The complete control of a weaker nation’s social, economic, and political life by a stronger nation.

Import Substitution: manufacturing goods locally to replace imports.

Indian National Congress: Nationalistic organization in India with the purpose of ending British control. Prominent members include Gandhi and Nehru.

Indigenous: originating in a particular region or country; a native

Industrial Revolution: In the second half of the 19th century, it was the fundamental change in the way goods were produced through the use of machines, capital, and the centralization of work forces in factories. It completely altered the social, economic, and political structure of most of Europe, Japan, and the United States.

Industrialization: The change to industrial methods of production such as the use of factories.

Irish Republican Army: an underground Irish nationalist organization founded to work for Irish independence from Great Britain.  It was declared illegal by the Irish government in 1936, but continues activity aimed at the unification of the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.  They use terrorist activities when necessary.

Iron Curtain: A term used by Winston Churchill to describe the division in Europe, with Soviet-influenced communist nations in Eastern Europe and democratic nations in western Europe.

Islamic Jihad: any of several Muslim extremist organizations in the Middle East and the war they wage against perceived threats to the Islamic religion

Islamist: supporting or advocating Islamic fundamentalism.



Jomo Kenyatta:  First Prime Minister of Kenya; Kenyatta helped Kenya gain its independence from Great Britain.

Khmer Rouge:  A political movement and a force of Cambodian communist guerillas that gained power in 1975.

Kristallnacht: On November 9th, 1938, Nazis in German looted, and burned Jewish stores and Synagogues, often beating Jews in the street. Over 90 Jews were killed during Kristallnacht. It is also called Night of Broken Glass.


Labor Union: an organization of wage earners or salaried employees for mutual aid and protection and for dealing collectively with employers; trade union.

Laissez-Faire Economics: This was an economic philosophy begun by Adam Smith in his book, Wealth of Nations, that stated that business and the economy would run best with no interference from the government. This economic system dominated most of the Industrial Revolution.

League of Nations: A multinational peace keeping organization which began as an idea of United States President Woodrow Wilson following the first World War. The Treaty of Versailles created a League with over 40 different countries joining. The United States was not one of them. The League of Nations was to be an international body that would settle future problems through negotiations instead of warfare. The member nations were to work cooperatively through economic and military means to enforce its decisions. However, since the United States did not join, the League never achieved its intentions. While the League did attempt to halt the aggressiveness of Hitler’s Germany, their inherent weakness prevented them from stopping World War II.

Vladimir Lenin: (1870-1924) Russian revolutionary leader and political theorist. He was the first leader of the new communist government of Soviet Russia. Later, he was also the first leader of the Soviet Union, which was composed of most of the republics of the former Russian Empire.

David Livingston: an explorer and missionary that spent 30 years in Africa learning the culture and keeping a diary about the peoples he came in contact with.

The Long March:  6,000 mile march that Chinese Communist Mao Zedong and his followers made in order to escape Nationalists who felt the Communists were a threat to take power.


Nelson Mandela: Anti-apartheid activist and leader of the African National Congress.  He spent nearly 30 years in jail before being released by F.W. de Klerk.  He became the first President of South Africa to be elected in a fully representative democratic election.

Marshall Plan: Economic aid from the U.S. used to rebuild Europe after World War II, though the Soviet Union prevented any Eastern European nations from accepting this aid.  This was named after United States Secretary of State George Marshall.

March Revolution:  in March of 1917 Russians in the city of St. Petersburg revolted because of lack of food, fuel, and housing.  Troops refused to fire on the rioters and Czar Nicholas II was forced to abdicate the thrown. 

Giuseppe Mazzini: (1805-1872) Nationalistic leader in Italy, who started a group called Young Italy in 1831. Young Italy was a nationalistic movement that wanted to end foreign control of Italy.

Meiji Restoration: The restoration of the Emperor Meiji to power in Japan, overthrowing the Tokugawa Shogunate in 1868.

Mexican Revolution of 1911: A political revolution that removed dictator Porfirio Diaz, and hoped to institute democratic reforms. While a constitution was written in 1917, it was many more years until true change occurred.

Militarism: Political policy that is dominated by the military and the competitive buildup of arms.

Ho Chi Minh: (1890-1969) Vietnamese leader who is responsible for ousting first the French, then the United States from his country. Supported by both communist China and the Soviet Union, he guided Vietnam through decades long warfare to emerge as a communist nation.

Modernization:  To change something to make it conform to modern standards.

Mujahadin: a military force of Muslim guerilla warriors.

Muslim League: Nationalist movement in India by the Islamic population who did not feel represented by the Indian National Congress. They initially formed to protect Muslim rights, but later called for an independent state.


Napoleon III: Emperor of the French (1852-1871). After proclaiming himself emperor (1852), he instituted reforms and rebuilt Paris. His successful imperialist ventures were overshadowed by the Franco-Prussian War (1870-1871), which resulted in his deposition.

Nationalism: Pride in one’s country or culture, often excessive in nature.

Jawaharlal Nehru: (1889-1964) Indian nationalist leader and the first prime minister of independent India from 1947 to 1964. Along with Mohandas Gandhi, he was instrumental in freeing India from Britain’s control.

Neutrality: the policy or status of a nation that does not participate in a war between other nations.  During WWI the United States attempted to remain neutral.

New Economic Policy: An economic policy of Vladimir Lenin’s in the Soviet Union where government controlled most banks and industry, but did allow some private ownership.

Czar Nicholas II: (1868-1918) Czar of Russia (1894-1917). He was overthrown during the Russian Revolution of 1917. Later, he and his family were killed by the revolution’s leadership.

Kwame Nkrumah:  Inspired by Pan-Africanism, he began to strike and boycott to battle the British and helped the Gold Coast gain its independence.  He became the Prime Minister of Ghana.

Nonalignment: policy of not supporting either side in a conflict, such as the Cold War.

North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA): an economic treaty between Canada, the United States, and Mexico to lower tariffs and create a free trade environment. NAFTA was ratified by its member nations in 1994.

North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO): An international defense alliance between the United States, Great Britain, and other nations.  This alliance was formed in 1949 as a response to the spread of communism.

North German Federation: came into existence in August 1866 as a military alliance of 22 states of northern Germany with the Kingdom of Prussia as the leading state.

November Revolution: in November 1917 the Bolsheviks lead a revolt and they overthrow the provisional government promising “peace, land, and bread” to the people.

Nuremberg laws: (1935) Laws placed on Jews by the Nazi regime in Germany that stated that Aryans and Jews could not get married, Jews could not employ Aryan women in their homes, and Jews were no longer German citizens.


Organization of American States (OAS): a group formed in 1948 to promote democracy, economic cooperation, and human rights in the Americas.

Overpopulation: Excessive population of an area to the point of overcrowding, depletion of natural resources, or environmental deterioration.


Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO): One time terrorist organization, now considered to be a legitimate political body whose goals have been to create a nation-state for the displaced Palestinians. The PLO is lead by Yasir Arafat.

Panama Canal: A ship canal, about 82 km (51 mi) long, crossing the Isthmus of Panama in the Canal Zone and connecting the Caribbean Sea with the Pacific Ocean. It was begun by the French in 1881, but the project was abandoned in 1889. The United States gained construction rights after Panama declared its independence in 1903, and the canal was opened to traffic on August 15, 1914. A 1977 treaty stipulated that the Panamanians gained full rights of sovereignty over the canal on December 31, 1999.

Pan-Africanism: nationalistic movement which emphasized the unity of all Africans and sought to end foreign control.

Pan-Arabism: Nationalistic movement which emphasized the unity of all Arabs, and sought to end foreign control in the Middle East.

Pearl Harbor: A naval base in the Pacific Ocean on the southern coast of Oahu, Hawaii.  On Sunday, December 7, 1941, Japanese planes attacked the base killing over 2,000 Americans.  The United States entered World War II the following day.

Perestroika: A policy of Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to revitalize the Soviet economy by opening it up to more free enterprise. 

Pollution: The contamination of air, water, or soil by substances that are harmful to living organisms. Pollution can occur naturally, for example through volcanic eruptions, or as the result of human activities, such as the spilling of oil or disposal of industrial waste.

Pol Pot:  Leader of Cambodia from 1975 to 1979, who was responsible for the deaths of nearly two million of his own people due to starvation, execution, and beatings.

Gavrilo Princep: (1894 -1918) Serbian nationalist/terrorist who assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife in 1914. This event resulted in the start of World War I.

Proletariat: Term given to the working class people in society.

Propaganda: information, ideas, or rumors deliberately spread widely to help or harm a person, group, movement, institution, nation, etc.

Protectorate: A country or region that is controlled by a more powerful country.



Racism: hatred or intolerance of another race or other races.

Realpolitik: A usually expansionist national policy having as its sole principle advancement of the national interest.

Red Shirts: Nationalistic group/army created and led by Guiseppe Garibaldi to end foreign control of Italy during the 19th century.

Reparations: compensation in money, material, labor, etc., payable by a defeated country to another country or to an individual for loss suffered during or as a result of war.

Franklin Roosevelt: President of the United States prior and during WWII.  He helps England prior to U.S. involvement by sending goods and supplies.  He dies while in office in 1945.

Russian Civil War: (1918-1921) forces loyal to Czar Nicholas II (Whites) and Vladimir Lenin (Reds) fight for control of Russia.  The Czar and his family are killed by the Red Army and they are eventually victorious.

Russification: Policies in Russia to make all of the peoples under their control conform to Russian culture and language. It was used in both the Russian Empire and later, in the Soviet Union.


Salt March: (1930) Passive resistance campaign of Mohandas Gandhi where many Indians protested the British tax on salt by marching to the sea to make their own salt.

SALT Treaties: The Strategic Arms Limitation Talks refers to two rounds of talks and international treaties involving the Unite States and the Soviet Union during the 1970’s on the issue of armament control

Sandinistas: a member of the Nicaraguan revolutionary movement that took control of Nicaragua in 1979.

Sardinia: Kingdom of Sardinia. Victor Emmanuel II of Sardinia became the first king of Italy in 1861.

Savannah: a plain characterized by coarse grasses and scattered tree growth, especially on the margins of the tropics where the rainfall is seasonal, as in eastern Africa.

“Scramble for Africa”: Term given for the rapid invasion of Africa by the various European powers. This began imperialism in Africa.

Sepoy Mutiny: (1857-1859) A revolt by the hired Hindu and Muslim soldiers of the British East India Company. It began as a result of the rifle cartridges that were distributed to the Sepoys had to be bitten to remove a cover before being inserted into a gun. Rumors circulated among the Sepoys that this cover had been greased with beef and pork fat. This angered Muslim Sepoys who were not supposed to consume pork, and the Hindu Sepoys who were not supposed to eat beef. Thus, the Sepoys revolted against the British army, which eventually ended the conflict through use of force. This resulted in the British government officially taking control of India, making it a colony.

Sikhs: Follower of Sikhism, which is a belief system which blends Hindu traditions with Islamic monotheistic traditions.  It is based in India and Pakistan.

Sinn Fein: An Irish political and cultural society founded about 1905 to promote political and economic independence from England, unification of Ireland, and a renewal of Irish culture. It now constitutes the political branch of the Irish Republican Army.

Social Darwinism: A social theory which states that the level a person rises to in society and wealth is determined by their genetic background.

Socialism: A political system where the means of production are controlled by the workers and all things are shared evenly. Socialist policies provide for government funding of many basic needs such as food, shelter, and medical care.

Solidarity (union): An independent Polish labor Union which fought against communism in Poland in the 1980s. They are most notable for helping to end communism in Poland and throughout Eastern Europe.

Sovereignty: The right of a country to govern itself without interference.

Soviet:  A local council consisting of workers and soldiers in Russian cities.

Sphere of Influence: An area of one country under the control of another. In China, these areas guaranteed specific trading privileges to each imperialist nation within its respective sphere.

Suez Canal: A canal linking the Red Sea to the Mediterranean Sea. It was a vital trade route in the British Empire during imperialism, and continues to link North Africa and Europe to Asia today.

Superpowers: The term given to the United States and the Soviet Union during the Cold War. 

Sustainable Development: Environmentally friendly forms of economic growth activities (agriculture, logging, manufacturing, etc.) that allow the continued production of a commodity without damage to the ecosystem (soil, water supplies, biodiversity or other surrounding resources).


Tenements: multi-storied building divided into many crowded apartments

Terrorism: The use of violence for political purpose.

Third Reich: The German state from 1933 to 1945 under Adolf Hitler.

38th Parallel:  An imaginary line marking 38 degrees of latitude, particularly the line at 38 degrees of latitude north across the Korean Peninsula, dividing Soviet forces to the north and American forces to the South after World War II.

Three Principles of the People: method by which Sun Yixian (Yat-sen)  wanted to rebuild China.  These principles included nationalism, democracy, and livelihood (fair tax, land system).

Tiananmen Square Massacre:  Thousands of demonstrators calling for democracy met at a public plaza in the center of Beijing.  China’s Communist leaders sent in troops and many of the demonstrators were killed, showing that the Chinese government would use force to remain in control.

Totalitarian State: A state or country completely controlled by a single power, such as a monarch or dictator.

Total War: a war in which every available weapon is used and the nation’s full financial resources are devoted to winning the conflict.

Tradition: A long-established custom or belief.

Treaty of Versailles: Treaty ending World War I. It was extremely unfair to Germany, forcing them to accept all of the blame for the war. It is a major cause of World War II.

Trench Warfare: A form of combat where armies fight each other from opposing fortified positions, usually consisting of long, dugout holes or trenches.

Tribalism: the customs and beliefs of tribal life and society

Truman Doctrine: A policy of the Truman presidency that called for supporting any nation resisting communism by providing aid to any nation threatened by communism or any totalitarian ideology.

Tutsis: Ethnic group that had political control in Rwanda, though they made up only 15% of the population.  They were attacked by the Hutus in 1994 in the Rwandan genocide.

Desmond Tutu: First black South African archbishop and an activist who spoke out against apartheid.  He convinced foreign nations not to invest in South Africa as long as the system of apartheid was in place.


Ultimatum: a final, uncompromising demand or set of terms issued by a party to a dispute, the rejection of which may lead to a severance of relations or to the use of force.

Ultranationalists: extreme nationalist (ex: Nazi Germany).

United Nations: An international body composed of many countries that seeks to promote peace, prosperity, and cooperation around the world. It was formed in 1945 at the end of World War II.

Untouchables: Members of Hindu society thought to have been removed from the Caste System, with no hope of returning to it, due to their misdeeds in previous lives. Work that is deemed unclean for all other Hindus is reserved for these Outcasts.

Urbanization: The movement of people to urban (city) areas in search of work.


Vietcong:  Communist rebels in South Vietnam who sought to overthrow South Vietnam’s government; received assistance from North Vietnam.


Westernization: To adopt western ideas and culture

Warsaw Pact: An international defense alliance formed in 1955 between the Soviet Union and many Eastern European countries as a response to NATO.

West Bank: an area in the Middle East, between the W bank of the Jordan River and the E frontier of Israel: occupied in 1967 and subsequently claimed by Israel; formerly held by Jordan.

Western Front: term used during WWI describe the “contested armed frontier” between lands controlled by Germany to the East and the Allies to the West in France.

“White Man’s Burden”: A poem by Rudyard Kipling written in 1899. It is also the name given to the idea that the culture of the native populations where European imperialism was occurring were inferior to western nations. Some interpreted Kipling’s poem to mean that it was the duty of imperializing nations to bring western culture and sensibility to the savage native populations that were encountered in far off lands.

King William I: Kaiser of Germany from 1888 to 1918.  Aided by Otto Von Bismarck, he united Germany.



Yalta Conference: a conference held in Yalta in February 1945 where Roosevelt, Stalin, and Churchill planned the final stages of World War II and agreed to the territorial division of Europe.

Young Italy: Nationalistic movement that wanted to end foreign control of Italy. It was started in 1831 by Guiseppe Mazzini.


Zionism: Jewish nationalist movement to establish a homeland in Palestine. This movement began in the late 1800s, as anti-Semitic feelings intensified in Europe. The main leader of this movement was a journalist by the name of Theodor Herzl. Herzl’s dream of a homeland for Jewish peoples was realized in 1948 with the creation of Israel.