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Edexcel A2 History - Cold War watch

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    (Original post by CathyHeathcliff)
    Thanks for your replies You're probably right, they are basically the same. My biggest issue over this is whether or not to bring in US policy - if it refers to Khrushchev's policy then US policy is much less relevant to the question. I've asked a couple of teachers at my school about the difference and they aren't too sure either. After long consideration one of them said that US policy is relevant because it is dictated by Soviet policy - taking the example of why it failed to end the Cold war, you could argue that it failed because Khrushchev's erratic and unpredictable behaviour failed to convince the US that he was committed to it and made him seem weaker, resulting in policies like massive retaliation and brinkmanship.

    I think if a question naming peaceful coexistence comes up I might just avoid it it the other question is decent because I think I would just be panicking that I used the wrong interpretation.
    Ok, so I found the mark scheme:

    Mark Scheme:
    Candidates should have knowledge about the main features of ‘peaceful coexistence’ in the period 1953-61. Developments which helped to ease Cold War tensions might include: the end of the Korean War (1953); Soviet settlement of border disputes with Turkey and Iran (1953) and recognition of Israel (1953); Austrian independence and improved Soviet-Yugoslav relations (1955); the ‘Geneva spirit’ based on east-west summit diplomacy and Khrushchev’s visit to the USA in 1959. Developments which sustained Cold War tensions during the period might include: US attitudes towards communism in the 1950s (domino theory, ‘roll back’, Eisenhower doctrine); Soviet concept of peaceful coexistence based on long-term victory of communism; the impact of the Hungarian Rising (1956) and the launch of Sputnik (1957); the U2 spy plane incident (1960) and the issue of Germany (1958-1961). At Levels 1 and 2 simple or more developed statements will provide either only simple or more developed statements about peaceful coexistence with either only implicit reference to the extent tensions were eased or argument based on insufficient evidence. At Level 3, students should provide some sustained analysis related to the extent tensions were eased but the detail may be hazy in places and/or the material unbalanced chronologically or thematically. At Level 4, there will be sustained analysis of US-Soviet relations under peaceful coexistence with some attempt to reach a reasoned judgement on ‘how far’. At Level 5, ‘how far’ will be central in an answer which will be well informed with well selected information and a sustained evaluation.

    And the examiners' report said something along the lines of 'some candidates mistakenly took it to be a stated factor question'

    It looks like you do bring in US policy, but only to say that there wasn't a thaw.
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    (Original post by i_dontreallyknow)
    I honestly hadn't thought about the whole policy or period thing until you brought it up XD, I just emailed my teacher asking her - should I let you know what she thinks?
    Sorry!! I hope it doesn't worry you like it does me!

    And yes, it would be interesting to hear what your teacher thinks, thanks

    (Original post by i_dontreallyknow)
    Ok, so I found the mark scheme:

    Mark Scheme:
    Candidates should have knowledge about the main features of ‘peaceful coexistence’ in the period 1953-61. Developments which helped to ease Cold War tensions might include: the end of the Korean War (1953); Soviet settlement of border disputes with Turkey and Iran (1953) and recognition of Israel (1953); Austrian independence and improved Soviet-Yugoslav relations (1955); the ‘Geneva spirit’ based on east-west summit diplomacy and Khrushchev’s visit to the USA in 1959. Developments which sustained Cold War tensions during the period might include: US attitudes towards communism in the 1950s (domino theory, ‘roll back’, Eisenhower doctrine); Soviet concept of peaceful coexistence based on long-term victory of communism; the impact of the Hungarian Rising (1956) and the launch of Sputnik (1957); the U2 spy plane incident (1960) and the issue of Germany (1958-1961). At Levels 1 and 2 simple or more developed statements will provide either only simple or more developed statements about peaceful coexistence with either only implicit reference to the extent tensions were eased or argument based on insufficient evidence. At Level 3, students should provide some sustained analysis related to the extent tensions were eased but the detail may be hazy in places and/or the material unbalanced chronologically or thematically. At Level 4, there will be sustained analysis of US-Soviet relations under peaceful coexistence with some attempt to reach a reasoned judgement on ‘how far’. At Level 5, ‘how far’ will be central in an answer which will be well informed with well selected information and a sustained evaluation.

    And the examiners' report said something along the lines of 'some candidates mistakenly took it to be a stated factor question'

    It looks like you do bring in US policy, but only to say that there wasn't a thaw.
    From this, it does seem that they mean the period of thaw as opposed to the policy since they mention the policy as part of the developments.

    I think what is confusing me so much is that my teacher never referred to the thaw as peaceful coexistence so whenever I hear/read that phrase I always think of the Soviet policy when it is more likely to be referring to the period. What isn't helping on top of that is that when I first read the question (I assume you're talking about the 'to what extent did peaceful coexistence ease Cold War tensions' one) I did actually mistake it to be a stated factor question as the examiners' report says some did (I won't go into how I interpreted it that way as I really don't want to confuse you any more than I already have). So now I just have a massive fear of questions on the thaw when it is one of the easier topics.
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    I just want to make sure that for the controversy essays that they will always ask a beginning of the cold war, and end of the cold war question? so this means you only have to revise one right?? at least that's what my teacher said
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    (Original post by bluefire66)
    I just want to make sure that for the controversy essays that they will always ask a beginning of the cold war, and end of the cold war question? so this means you only have to revise one right?? at least that's what my teacher said
    Yes, your teacher's right
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    hi,

    I was wondering if anyone could help me with these two questions:

    How far do you accept the view that the foreign policy of Eisenhower and Dulles was based on empty rhetoric?
    (i can't think of what evidence there is to say that they were based on empty rhetoric?)

    How far do you accept the validity of the interpretation that China's rapprochement with the USA was a product of geopolitical considerations? (this idea wasn't mentioned in my textbook so im not sure what this means)


    I found these questions on a sheet handed to us by my teacher, however these feel like rather specific questions that couldn't be explored in enough detail to be an essay question? Does anyone know if these sorts of questions would come up?
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    (Original post by cybound123)
    How far do you accept the view that the foreign policy of Eisenhower and Dulles was based on empty rhetoric?
    (i can't think of what evidence there is to say that they were based on empty rhetoric?)
    I think what the 'empty rhetoric' idea is referring to is massive retaliation and brinkmanship - they may have threatened nuclear war in public, but in private they would never realistically use nuclear weapons. Their rhetoric was merely a way of manipulating the Soviet Union into being less aggressive.

    You could also talk about their response to the Hungarian Uprising, in that they led the Hungarians to believe that the US would support them but in reality they could not directly intervene in the Soviet sphere of influence as it would be too provocative.

    (Original post by cybound123)
    How far do you accept the validity of the interpretation that China's rapprochement with the USA was a product of geopolitical considerations? (this idea wasn't mentioned in my textbook so im not sure what this means
    I don't really know about this one either, sorry! Geopolitics is (I think) when geography dictates foreign policy, or something along those lines - it's a complicated concept. The only thing I can think of for this which may possibly be related in the border disputes between China and the USSR which led to the Sino-Soviet split and the split meant that China basically had to ally with the USA so they could be allied with a great power. Maybe someone else can think of something better.

    (Original post by cybound123)
    I found these questions on a sheet handed to us by my teacher, however these feel like rather specific questions that couldn't be explored in enough detail to be an essay question? Does anyone know if these sorts of questions would come up?
    I think the first one is more likely than the second as it is sort of similar to a 'was there a thaw or not' question as it is kind of asking to what extent the USA were committed to the thaw. However, I think that they are both too narrow to be a genuine question. I may be wrong though.
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    (Original post by CathyHeathcliff)

    And yes, it would be interesting to hear what your teacher thinks, thanks

    Sorry it took so long for my teacher to reply :-S:


    'Exam question is more focused on the extent of a thaw.

    PC did ease tensions - summits/ negotiations/ crises were averted ie Berlin*

    PC did not ease tensions - arms race continued / ideological struggle continued/ Khrushchev 's policies were designed to enhance Soviet National interests ie Hungary'

    Hope that helps :-)
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    Probably not the place to put it- but does anyone know of somewhere to find a past A* level answer for the part A and part B - or of any tips to ascertain an A* answer? (Any resources would help at this point)

    Cheers
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    (Original post by Chapston)
    Probably not the place to put it- but does anyone know of somewhere to find a past A* level answer for the part A and part B - or of any tips to ascertain an A* answer? (Any resources would help at this point)

    Cheers
    If you go on the examiner's reports for Edexcel they include examples of essays people did in that year and sometimes they are in the top band.

    Also, in the revision guides there are example answers (if you have them).
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    Does anyone see there being a chance that Section A could have 1 question on Peaceful Coexistence and the other on Arms Race? Or one on sino-soviet and the other on detente? Or is it always 1 question from each pair (peace/arms and sino/detente)?
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    So it seems that the pattern is that it would be thaw/sino-soviet or arms race/détente, and my teacher seems fairly certain that it will probably be thaw/sino-soviet, and that they could give a question like how did sino-soviet relations contribute to détente?

    But then it's the last year so....maybe they'll screw us all over :-/
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    (Original post by i_dontreallyknow)
    So it seems that the pattern is that it would be thaw/sino-soviet or arms race/détente, and my teacher seems fairly certain that it will probably be thaw/sino-soviet, and that they could give a question like how did sino-soviet relations contribute to détente?

    But then it's the last year so....maybe they'll screw us all over :-/
    Yeah I wouldn't count on it following any sort of pattern.

    If I had to guess though, I reckon they'll put a fairly straight forward Sino Soviet one in there, cause that hasn't come up too often, and a trickier one on something else. Like last year was and 'why and how significant' question on detente. Basically two essays in one.
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    (Original post by CathyHeathcliff)
    I think what the 'empty rhetoric' idea is referring to is massive retaliation and brinkmanship - they may have threatened nuclear war in public, but in private they would never realistically use nuclear weapons. Their rhetoric was merely a way of manipulating the Soviet Union into being less aggressive.

    You could also talk about their response to the Hungarian Uprising, in that they led the Hungarians to believe that the US would support them but in reality they could not directly intervene in the Soviet sphere of influence as it would be too provocative.



    I don't really know about this one either, sorry! Geopolitics is (I think) when geography dictates foreign policy, or something along those lines - it's a complicated concept. The only thing I can think of for this which may possibly be related in the border disputes between China and the USSR which led to the Sino-Soviet split and the split meant that China basically had to ally with the USA so they could be allied with a great power. Maybe someone else can think of something better.



    I think the first one is more likely than the second as it is sort of similar to a 'was there a thaw or not' question as it is kind of asking to what extent the USA were committed to the thaw. However, I think that they are both too narrow to be a genuine question. I may be wrong though.
    thank you so much that clears things up!
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    wondering if anyone could help with the question B structure.

    In terms of paragraphing should they be thematically or by source?
    for example if the question was:

    'The Cold War came to an end in the late 1980s mainly due to the moral bankruptcy of communism in the Soviet bloc' How far do you agree?

    would the structure go as follows-
    -into
    -para 1 - source(1) agreeing with question+own knowledge+ CR with another source
    -para 2 - source giving different view/disagreeing(2) +own knowledge +CR with the last source(3)
    -para 3- source (1) CR with source (3) and own knowledge.
    -conclusion

    I'm not sure that makes sense and I've probably confused myself even more, but I hope someone can help haha!
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    (Original post by cybound123)
    wondering if anyone could help with the question B structure.

    In terms of paragraphing should they be thematically or by source?
    for example if the question was:

    'The Cold War came to an end in the late 1980s mainly due to the moral bankruptcy of communism in the Soviet bloc' How far do you agree?

    would the structure go as follows-
    -into
    -para 1 - source(1) agreeing with question+own knowledge+ CR with another source
    -para 2 - source giving different view/disagreeing(2) +own knowledge +CR with the last source(3)
    -para 3- source (1) CR with source (3) and own knowledge.
    -conclusion

    I'm not sure that makes sense and I've probably confused myself even more, but I hope someone can help haha!
    Definitely by theme. Much better to blend different sources into the same para. That would get crazy otherwise too cause you'd be putting about five themes into each paragraph dealing with one source
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    My teacher is adamant that the sino Soviet split won't come up as there's not a lot they can ask you on it, and it first came up in 2010 then took 4 years to come up again. She thinks it will be on detente again as there's 4 things they can ask on it: the causes, how successful, how committed the superpowers were and why did it end.

    I'm praying for sino Soviet split to come up but I think it might be the causes of detente or how committed the superpowers were
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    (Original post by dauntlesstraitor)
    My teacher is adamant that the sino Soviet split won't come up as there's not a lot they can ask you on it, and it first came up in 2010 then took 4 years to come up again. She thinks it will be on detente again as there's 4 things they can ask on it: the causes, how successful, how committed the superpowers were and why did it end.

    I'm praying for sino Soviet split to come up but I think it might be the causes of detente or how committed the superpowers were

    wasn't there one in 2012 about how the sino-soviet split prompted detente?
    however i do agree that there are so many parts to detente that they could easily put it in this year

    my teacher is pretty sure it will be sino-soviet relations or post stalin thaw!
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    (Original post by cybound123)
    wondering if anyone could help with the question B structure.

    In terms of paragraphing should they be thematically or by source?
    for example if the question was:

    'The Cold War came to an end in the late 1980s mainly due to the moral bankruptcy of communism in the Soviet bloc' How far do you agree?

    would the structure go as follows-
    -into
    -para 1 - source(1) agreeing with question+own knowledge+ CR with another source
    -para 2 - source giving different view/disagreeing(2) +own knowledge +CR with the last source(3)
    -para 3- source (1) CR with source (3) and own knowledge.
    -conclusion

    I'm not sure that makes sense and I've probably confused myself even more, but I hope someone can help haha!
    Definitely factor by factor, not one paragraph on each source alone - however, as long as you cross-reference both ways then the two may be quite similar as it is often the case that one source focuses most on one factor (if that makes sense).

    What I do is I go in with at least three different colour highlighters and when I'm reading the sources I highlight a different factor in a different colour whenever I come across it, making it very easy to cross reference as you can see how the factor you are writing about in your paragraph is covered by each source.

    Assuming I'm disagreeing with the question (which I find it easier to do), the structure I tend to use is:
    - Intro
    - Paragraph 1: Factor agreeing with the question (usually focused on in the first source) and aspects of the others sources which agree with this factor.
    - Paragraph 2: Factor that you think was most important. Maybe begin this paragraph or end the previous paragraph with what you see as the major flaw in the argument of the first sources (e.g. if the question is about Reagan, then you might mention how he was in power since 1981 but the Cold War didn't end until the late 1980s under Bush) Again, mention parts of the other sources which agree with this factor. At the end of the paragraph, you should use this factor to counter-argue the factor in the question (e.g. if you've written a paragraph on Gorbachev's new way of thinking then you might say that Reagan's tougher stance meant nothing without this as Gorbachev's predecessors had refused to give in to Reagan).
    - Paragraph 3: Other factor mentioned in the sources. Evidence from any source which mentions this factor. Compare this factor with the previous factors to explain why it is less important than that in paragraph 2 and establish whether you think it is more or less important than that in paragraph 1 - maybe use where the sources contradict each other or your own knowledge to criticise the arguments that you disagree with.
    - Conclusion

    Remember to always link back to the factor in the question - it is not a generic 'why did the Cold War start/end' question so you must compare the significance of any factor you mention with that in the question.

    The plan you gave was fine, but I wouldn't go in with a pre-conceived notion of which sources you are going to compare with what, as I hope my structure helped to convey - you cannot tell what each source will cover so you don't know what you will be able to compare!

    I went off on a bit of a tangent, but I hope this helped somewhat!
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    So it's the last day to do revision.. What's everyone focusing on the most? I think I'm pretty confident on the thaw/peaceful coexistence and the end. But I'm going to go over everything again today and then practice essay plans. Good luck everyone!


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    (Original post by Anisa13400)
    So it's the last day to do revision.. What's everyone focusing on the most? I think I'm pretty confident on the thaw/peaceful coexistence and the end. But I'm going to go over everything again today and then practice essay plans. Good luck everyone!


    Posted from TSR Mobile
    My plan was to read a bunch of example essays on everything. There's no point me trying to cram - if I don't know it now I probably won't remember it XD

    I'm praying for peaceful coexistence or sino-soviet. Preferably one of those 'was there a thaw or not?' questions

    Good luck everyone!
 
 
 
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