Unit: The Cold War: Superpower relations from 1941- 1991

Lessons:

30 lessons

Why was the Berlin Wall built?

In this lesson, you will begin a new enquiry about how far the Cold War reached crisis levels between 1958-1970. You will learn about why, in 1961, Berlin once again found itself at the centre of the Cold War. You will examine why Khrushchev was so concerned about Berlin and the actions he took to tackle these concerns from 1958-1961. Finally, you will draw this learning together to explain why the Berlin Wall was built in 1961, changing the lives of Berliners forever.

Why did the Cuban Revolution change the relationship between the superpowers?

In this lesson, you will begin to study our second Cold War crisis, which took place in Cuba. You will learn about the Cuban Revolution in 1959 and the impact that this had on relations between the USA and the USSR. Finally, you will look at the chain of events that the revolution set in motion, including the USA's severing of relations with Cuba, Cuba's development of a relationship with the USSR and finally America's engineering of the Bay of Pigs invasion in April 1961.

How was the Cuban Missile Crisis resolved and with what significance?

In this lesson, you will study how tensions continued to increase over Cuba throughout 1962 and how the crisis was eventually solved. You will examine the consequences of the crisis for individual leaders and superpower relations and will consider how close the world came to nuclear war. Finally, you will evaluate what the main outcome of the Cuban Missile Crisis was and what its impact was on the continuity of the Cold War.

What were the causes and consequences of the Prague Spring?

In this lesson, you will travel to Czechoslovakia in 1968 to learn about the final crisis point of the 1958-1970 period. You will learn about the Prague Spring in Czechoslovakia as well as what caused it. Most importantly, you will learn about how the USSR reacted to it and what the consequences of both the reforms and the response were for Czechoslovakia, eastern Europe, the USSR and superpower relations.

How did Gorbachev's 'new thinking' reduce tensions between the superpowers?

In this lesson, you will learn about the changes that Mikhail Gorbachev made to the USSR and Soviet control of Eastern Europe. You will learn about what his 'new thinking' entailed and how this led to a reduction in tensions between the USA and the USSR. In particular, you will examine the Summit Conferences of 1985-1988 to see how Gorbachev's 'new thinking' enabled agreements to be made between the superpowers and contributed eventually to the end of the Cold War.

How did the Soviet Union's hold on Eastern Europe come to an end?

In this lesson, you will learn about how Mikhail Gorbachev's 'new thinking' changed Eastern Europe. You will examine how Eastern Europeans responded to the end of the Brezhnev Doctrine and will study the chain of events that his reforms set in motion. Finally, you will evaluate why these changes happened - was Gorbachev alone responsible for the USSR's loss of control over Eastern Europe or were other factors also at play?

Why did the Cold War come to an end?

In this lesson, you will learn about why the Cold War came to an end in 1991. You will recap the narrative of the end of the Cold War before examining two different interpretations about why Soviet control of Eastern Europe collapsed and consequently why the chain of events that led to the end of the Cold War occurred. Finally, you will place this narrative into the wider context of the Cold War and spend some time looking back on all that we have studied.