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For Paper 2 and 3

Open with a clear point, statement of relevance to the question/thesis.

Analyse/explain/expand on the point. Locate in time and place.
Produce evidence.
Use phrases such as As a result/In fact/Indeed/In consequence/therefore and particularly This

The WRs downfall was caused by economic issues rather than weakness of the constitution.
The question states TWO issues, but you have to deal with more than two, ideally all. (It is
desired that you challenge the question)
So you could say...Yes the economic issues were important....weakness of constitution was
more important...but the other issues cant be forgotten eg. social polarization, lack of effective
military force.
Put factors into context - eg. The Great Depression + Hyperinflation - Link the twos context by
talking about how the GD came AFTER hyperinflation, the crushing disappointment of the public
because they thought they were done with money problems.

Force was essential to the rise to power of twentieth-century leaders.
Comparing two leaders - Hitler and Mao - dont write about Hitler and then Mao. Write a running
commentary on the two. eg. three common factors in their rise that did not include force -
popular support, weakness of opposition, importance of ideology.

Define totalitarianism. Provide the Orwell definition.
If you make a literary allusion in your introduction, refer back to it in your conclusion.

Paper 3
You have to read historiography.

Boxer Rebellion:
You need to display arguments, not just list out causes and consequences.


Failure of Qing
Backwardness of China

Anger at Western penetration

Splitting up causes shows organization/structure.


Boxer Protocol

Collapse of Qing dynasty

(subject-specific vocabulary --> shows analysis)

ORGANIZATION -> PRIORITIZATION - deciding which cause and consequence is most
significant --> EXPLORE RELATIONSHIP B/W FACTORS (web of causation)

eg. The imperialism imposed on China exacerbates anti-Qing feeling.

You need to include more empirical evidence.

Look at from a Vietnamese perspective since its a paper on Asia.

From a US perspective, largely ideological - containment of communism. capitalism.

Nationalist with a bit of ideology:
From North Vietnams perspective, the war was in essence a war for freedom from US
imperialism and French domination. The goal was unification of an independent Vietnam.

South Vietnam:
Different sort of nationalism.

Link idea to author.
Numbers (evidence) + opinions.
Refer to schools of thought.
(^ Use in intro)
Use sentences that start with while or whereas.
Dont ever say Some historians think.
Including the school of thought + historian is good (eg. marxist historians such as hobsbawm)

Write the number next to the question.
Your thesis shouldnt restate the question.

Paper 1



lacks synthesis of historical ideas
lacks hindsight

never say it is biased
if it is unreliable you have to say why its a limitation. because this could also be a value.
look at history book reviews on the times literary supplement.

in your 5 min reading time, just read q1 and answer it in your head. then write it down, saving 5

Think of What if....then scenarios


Dont contradict the intro, reinforce it.
Reassert the thesis.
Restate the scope.
Place in wider context.
While looking at women under Castros regime, one truly sees the nature of the revolution -
there was a will to bring about change but not the means to achieve it.
One must not be too judgmental of Castro - it was hard to undo the effects of a 50 year old
Try to have the intro and conc. come full circle.
At the start of the conclusion, you can say, We have seen or In the final analysis or One could

How and why had Mao emerged as the leader of China by 1949?


Although the Communists emerged triumphant in the bloody Chinese Civil War that ravaged the
nation between 1946 to 1949, ensuring Maos ascent to power, Nationalist defeat was by no
means certain. While Communist victory was bolstered by Maos able and confident leadership,
party strengths, and Chinas socio-economic conditions, these factors were not crucial in the
outcome of the war. The most significant reason can be considered, instead, to be the
weaknesses of the Nationalist Party, whose feeble governance, lack of support and poor military
force comprised the long-term external factors for its downfall.


We have seen that Maos rise to political power in China by 1949 depended primarily on the
weaknesses of his opposition, namely the Nationalists. It was also aided, to a lesser extent, by
the innate strengths of the CCP, Maos skilful leadership, and the socio-economic conditions
prevalent in the nation. This combination of external and internal factors propelled Maos
ultimate victory over the Guomindang, an outcome that would shape Chinas history for the next
twenty-seven years.



Account for the origins of the VW.
From the US p., it starts from 1954. From the Vietnamese p., it developed from 1945-46.


Taiwan considers itself to be China, and the PRC an illegitimate force suppressing peoples
South Vietnam similarly considers itself the real Vietnam, and North Vietnam the illegitimate
enclave, led by rabid Communists.

Domino theory - ideological in the Cold War context.
Motivations adapt and change from containment. By 1964 it becomes more of an illustration of
American commitment. It is strategically political. What changed? Berlin Wall came up, Cuban
Missile Crisis, Kennedy has come and gone, zero sum mentality (they win, we lose) =
realpolitik, focused on political balance.
But after Tet Offensive, US realizes - cant win.
Peace movement - US public starts to believe the war is a lost cause, and wrong on moral
Splintering of the alliance between the people, the military and the political system.
Nixons job becomes to get out of Vietnam, but - peace with honor. Cannot be seen to lose.

Over escalation -----next phase---- Withdrawing from the war (by escalating the bombing)

Politically significant
Culturally significant
Militarily a complete failure

Abandoned guerilla tactics. Seized US Embassy but could not hold it.
Used conventional tactics to taunt the US.
Significance is - It was a political point. You cannot win.


Proved to the US media (not the US - be precise) that the US could not win this war. The media
reported it and the public believed it.
American politicians accepted this to increase their vote. We have to get out.


Nixon couldnt return back to the Kennedy era which was moderate and mild, only sending
military advisors and not full-scale troops. 10 years had passed in the meantime.
Training soldiers in just 8 months could not work.

The attempt wasnt meant to succeed completely. It was mainly to show the Vietnamese that
the US was intent on getting out of there.

Vietnamization is overwhelmingly propaganda.

This was the first moment the US had doubted their ideology/political systems.

August 1871 - The government abolishes domains and replaces them with prefectures.