Cold War and the Nuclear Age


Lafeber, “Truman’s Hard-line Policy”

What is Lafeber’s interpretation of the origins or cause of the Cold War?

What according to the author shaped Truman’s behavior and why is this important?

How did Truman’s attitude affect his decision on Poland following WWII?

How does the author explain Stalin and the Soviets ‘s actions in the early Cold War period?

What actions by the US seemed hypocritical and thus worsened the Cold War?

According to Lafeber, what was the significance of the Truman Doctrine in terms of the Cold War?

How did the Marshall Plan contribute to Cold War?

Why did the nation undertake a more aggressive outlook when it adopted the suggestions of NSC-68?


Gaddis, “Two Cold War Empires”

Overall, how does Gaddis’ interpretation of the Cold War compare to Lafeber’s?

How does he characterize Stalin’s goals?

According to Gaddis, why did the US and the West not immediately stop USSR aggression after WWII?

How did the emergence and development of the American empire differ from Soviets according to Gaddis?

Why was US empire effor more successful according to Gaddis?

How does the author deal with the morality issue?  In other words, were the US and Russian spheres of influence morally equivalent?


Kennan’s Telegram

Why do you think this article was so important?  What did it do?

How does he characterize the relationship between Soviets and US?

How does he describe the Soviet style of foreign policy?

 What is or where is the location of power in the Soviet Union?

What is the ultimate goal of the Kremlin and how patient are they?

What is the solution advocated by Kennan?

How will containment succeed?  What will happen to the Soviet Union if contained?


Henry Wallace Questions the “Get Tough” Policy, 1946

How does he describe American behavior following the peace gained from WWII?

What does he say about how the Russians might see or respond to American actions?

What does he suggest the US do?


Comic Book Nation, Ch. 3

Why did comic book publishers fear that business might decline in the early post WWII period?

How did the themes of superhero comics like Batman and Superman change during early postwar period?

What kind of new comic books emerged in this early postwar period to compete with decline of superhero comic books?  What themes did these new comics promote?