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    Hi, so I was just wondering what sort of question they would ask in the exam about Sino-Soviet relations? I know that usually if it was about the thaw it would be something along the lines of 'was there really a thaw?', is there a sort of general question they would ask about Sino-Soviet relations?

    Thanks
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    (Original post by i_dontreallyknow)
    Hi, so I was just wondering what sort of question they would ask in the exam about Sino-Soviet relations? I know that usually if it was about the thaw it would be something along the lines of 'was there really a thaw?', is there a sort of general question they would ask about Sino-Soviet relations?

    Thanks
    The spec says:

    The third bullet point relates to the complex relationship betweenthe USSR and China and the impact of this on the USA’s relationswith both countries. Students should have an understandingof the reasons for the signing of the Soviet–Chinese Treaty ofFriendship, Alliance and Mutual Assistance in February 1950 andthe consolidation of the relationship as a result of the outbreakof the Korean War and confrontation between China and the USAover Taiwan. They should be aware of the deterioration in Soviet-Chineserelations from 1958 and the development of full-scaleconfrontation by 1969 and the reasons for, and significance of,these developments. The launching of ‘ping-pong’ diplomacy,culminating in Nixon’s visit to China, and the use made of it byNixon and Kissinger to achieve leverage with the Soviet leadership,should be appreciated.

    In practice, they mostly just ask about the reasons for the Sino-Soviet split but they could in theory ask about the causes of rapprochement or maybe the reasons for the Sino-Soviet treaty. However, the vast majority of the questions I have seen (from past exams and from revisions guides) are about the causes of the split and many focus on ideology as the stated factor in the question.

    They have only asked about Sino-Soviet relations directly (there was one about rapprochement causing détente once) twice in the exam:

    To what extent was the deterioration in Sino-Soviet relations in the years 1958–69 due to personal rivalries? (2010)

    ‘Sino-Soviet relations, in the years 1958-69, were undermined primarily by conflicting national interests.’ How far do you agree with this view? (2014)
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    (Original post by CathyHeathcliff)
    The spec says:

    The third bullet point relates to the complex relationship betweenthe USSR and China and the impact of this on the USA’s relationswith both countries. Students should have an understandingof the reasons for the signing of the Soviet–Chinese Treaty ofFriendship, Alliance and Mutual Assistance in February 1950 andthe consolidation of the relationship as a result of the outbreakof the Korean War and confrontation between China and the USAover Taiwan. They should be aware of the deterioration in Soviet-Chineserelations from 1958 and the development of full-scaleconfrontation by 1969 and the reasons for, and significance of,these developments. The launching of ‘ping-pong’ diplomacy,culminating in Nixon’s visit to China, and the use made of it byNixon and Kissinger to achieve leverage with the Soviet leadership,should be appreciated.

    In practice, they mostly just ask about the reasons for the Sino-Soviet split but they could in theory ask about the causes of rapprochement or maybe the reasons for the Sino-Soviet treaty. However, the vast majority of the questions I have seen (from past exams and from revisions guides) are about the causes of the split and many focus on ideology as the stated factor in the question.

    They have only asked about Sino-Soviet relations directly (there was one about rapprochement causing détente once) twice in the exam:

    To what extent was the deterioration in Sino-Soviet relations in the years 1958–69 due to personal rivalries? (2010)

    ‘Sino-Soviet relations, in the years 1958-69, were undermined primarily by conflicting national interests.’ How far do you agree with this view? (2014)
    any predictions for the paper?
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    (Original post by Coolsul98)
    any predictions for the paper?
    I'm very bad at guessing but I'd probably say:

    - To what extent there was a thaw, or maybe causes of the thaw
    - Reasons for the Sino-Soviet split with a focus on ideology
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    (Original post by CathyHeathcliff)
    I'm very bad at guessing but I'd probably say:

    - To what extent there was a thaw, or maybe causes of the thaw
    - Reasons for the Sino-Soviet split with a focus on ideology
    Yeah, my teacher said she thought either peaceful coexistence or sino-soviet (hence my question XD)
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    (Original post by i_dontreallyknow)
    Yeah, my teacher said she thought either peaceful coexistence or sino-soviet (hence my question XD)
    Yeah, your teacher has probably told you this already but, in case she hasn't, apart from one year it has always been either thaw and Sino-Soviet or arms race and détente and it alternates between the two combinations. The one year when it wasn't it was thaw and détente but the détente question was about rapprochement/Sino-Soviet split (can't remember off the top of my head which one) as a contributing factor towards détente so it was still kind of thaw and Sino-Soviet.

    Saying that, it is the last year so you never know - they might change it.
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    (Original post by CathyHeathcliff)

    Saying that, it is the last year so you never know - they might change it.
    That's something that worries me, I can't get the thought that they would give us two 40 markers on the same conspiracy out of my head
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    (Original post by i_dontreallyknow)
    That's something that worries me, I can't get the thought that they would give us two 40 markers on the same conspiracy out of my head
    I hadn't thought of that as something which could happen but I guess it's true that they don't specify that they will always have one of each, despite the fact that it has always been that way. However, from what I have seen on here a fair number of schools seem to only teach one controversy and this must be something that the exam board is aware of, even if they don't approve of it. I think that because of this they will always do one of each because, despite what it may seem, they don't want to deliberately catch students out and make many fail (if nothing else, it makes their exam board look bad so less schools go with them so they get less money) and also it's not fair to punish students for their teachers' decisions.

    Do you study the causes and the end of the Cold War or only one? Either way, I'm sure you will be fine! In my opinion, Section B is the easier half of the paper as you've got the sources to fall back on - in theory, even with absolutely no knowledge of the topic whatsoever, you could still get 24/40 which is 60%.
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    (Original post by CathyHeathcliff)

    Do you study the causes and the end of the Cold War or only one? Either way, I'm sure you will be fine!
    We did study both but I was in hospital so I missed all the 'end' lessons - my plan was to only revise the beginning, but there's always that fear that they might put two questions on the end in (which is just the sort of bad luck that I'd get)

    Also, sorry if you get replied to twice, I don't think the first one sent....
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    so you guys think thtat there goingto give us two questions from the end period? or will they stick with the pattern: one from the beginning i.e peaceful co existence and one from the end i.e thaw
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    Hi all, I am a bit worried about the potentially for a "what caused the Thaw" question to appear, since there is a minimal amount in the textbook. How likely is it that this may come up?
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    (Original post by RPSharma)
    Hi all, I am a bit worried about the potentially for a "what caused the Thaw" question to appear, since there is a minimal amount in the textbook. How likely is it that this may come up?
    They've never asked a question on the causes of the thaw in the exam so that either means that they don't think it worth focusing on or that it is more likely to come up this year. It's not really worth taking the risk in my opinion; if I don't understand a topic, I always spend time on it to make myself understand it just in case it comes up.

    If it helps, the main causes for the thaw that I have are:

    Military
    - nuclear parity almost achieved, nuclear deterrent

    Economy
    - 1/3 of Soviet economy geared towards the military so Khrushchev wants to spend more on consumer goods
    - 12% of US GNP spent on the military in the 1950s

    Politics
    - Death of Stalin giving way to less aggressive leadership
    - Eisenhower's reputation as a military leader means his decisions were trusted more by the public than Truman's

    Foreign policy
    - Entrenchment of spheres of influence in Europe - no need to fight any more
    - Increasing global commitments for both superpowers put strain on the economy
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    (Original post by CathyHeathcliff)
    They've never asked a question on the causes of the thaw in the exam so that either means that they don't think it worth focusing on or that it is more likely to come up this year. It's not really worth taking the risk in my opinion; if I don't understand a topic, I always spend time on it to make myself understand it just in case it comes up.

    If it helps, the main causes for the thaw that I have are:

    Military
    - nuclear parity almost achieved, nuclear deterrent

    Economy
    - 1/3 of Soviet economy geared towards the military so Khrushchev wants to spend more on consumer goods
    - 12% of US GNP spent on the military in the 1950s

    Politics
    - Death of Stalin giving way to less aggressive leadership
    - Eisenhower's reputation as a military leader means his decisions were trusted more by the public than Truman's

    Foreign policy
    - Entrenchment of spheres of influence in Europe - no need to fight any more
    - Increasing global commitments for both superpowers put strain on the economy
    thank u. I largely understand the causes of the Thaw etc but I didn't do so well in a mock question about it at the beginning of the academic year - now I can't seem to shake the fear of it! thanks anyway
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    (Original post by CathyHeathcliff)
    It's not really worth taking the risk in my opinion; if I don't understand a topic, I always spend time on it to make myself understand it just in case it comes up.



    So what do you think are my chances would be if I didn't revise détente? I would have every other topic and they're not exactly going to ask two questions on the same one....
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    (Original post by i_dontreallyknow)
    So what do you think are my chances would be if I didn't revise détente? I would have every other topic and they're not exactly going to ask two questions on the same one....
    Détente is a relatively short topic so I don't think it would be of much benefit not to revise it as it wouldn't take long. However, if you wanted to not revise one topic then détente is probably the best of the Section A topics not to do as it is much less likely to come up this year and, as you say, even if détente did come up then you would have the other question on a topic you had revised. Also, out of arms race and détente, détente is the more independent one (revising arms race would help a lot with the thaw whereas there is less crossover between détente and Sino-Soviet).

    Personally, I am going to revise all topics thoroughly so I have the most choice in the exam. If a détente question does come up and the other question is really tricky or on another topic you don't understand you will be kicking yourself. If nothing else, revise the agreements they made.
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    If a question asks about peaceful co-existence, would you take that to mean the period of peaceful coexistence (i.e. 1953-61) or Khrushchev's policy of 'Peaceful Co-existence' (i.e. the belief that capitalism will inevitably fall to communism so there is no reason for conflict)? Does it matter which way you interpret it as they are very similar and would give rise to a similar discussion?

    For example:
    How far did ‘peaceful coexistence’ ease Cold War tensions between the Soviet Union and the USA in the years 1953–61?
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    They would essentially be the same discussion, like you said, so I don't think it would matter that much.

    I would probably at least mention and define Khrushchev's 'Peaceful Coexistence' policy - then use that to lead into all the thaw/not thaw stuff.

    But I'd bring in the arms race too (like how that lead to summits like Geneva and how it carried on despite peaceful coexistence), probably not a huge paragraph dedicated to it though <- then that would be answering it for either interpretation.
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    (Original post by CathyHeathcliff)
    If a question asks about peaceful co-existence, would you take that to mean the period of peaceful coexistence (i.e. 1953-61) or Khrushchev's policy of 'Peaceful Co-existence' (i.e. the belief that capitalism will inevitably fall to communism so there is no reason for conflict)? Does it matter which way you interpret it as they are very similar and would give rise to a similar discussion?

    For example:
    How far did ‘peaceful coexistence’ ease Cold War tensions between the Soviet Union and the USA in the years 1953–61?
    In addition to my other answer - I just looked at a mock I did with the question 'why did peaceful coexistence fail to end the Cold War in the years 1953-61?' I interpreted it as the actual policy and my teacher made a few comments about mentioning the arms race.

    I think if they mention the time period then you class it as the actual policy? If they meant the period surely they wouldn't put dates? But, like I said, it probably doesn't matter that much
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    (Original post by i_dontreallyknow)
    They would essentially be the same discussion, like you said, so I don't think it would matter that much.

    I would probably at least mention and define Khrushchev's 'Peaceful Coexistence' policy - then use that to lead into all the thaw/not thaw stuff.

    But I'd bring in the arms race too (like how that lead to summits like Geneva and how it carried on despite peaceful coexistence), probably not a huge paragraph dedicated to it though <- then that would be answering it for either interpretation.
    (Original post by i_dontreallyknow)
    In addition to my other answer - I just looked at a mock I did with the question 'why did peaceful coexistence fail to end the Cold War in the years 1953-61?' I interpreted it as the actual policy and my teacher made a few comments about mentioning the arms race.

    I think if they mention the time period then you class it as the actual policy? If they meant the period surely they wouldn't put dates? But, like I said, it probably doesn't matter that much
    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.
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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.
    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?
 
 
 
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