World History: Journey Across Time

Chapter 20: Imperialism and World War I

Student Web Activity

"Imperialism and World War I"

In this chapter, you have learned how imperialism, nationalism, and militarism shaped the world before World War I. Rivalries between countries caused nations to form alliances. While these alliances balanced power, they also endangered Europe's security. The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand was the event that sparked World War I. Visit the Web site First World to learn about the day the Archduke was shot and how it changed the world.

Destination Title:  First World

Note: Clicking on the link above will launch a new browser window.
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Begin at First World
  • Under "Primary Navigation" on the left-hand side of the page, select "How it Began."
  • Read the introduction of World War I. Under the heading "Summaries" in the center of the page, click "The Causes of World War I."
  • Read through how each country responded.
  • Navigate through the Web site, paying special attention to information about Archduke Franz Ferdinand's assassination.
  • Read Count Franz von Harrach's memoir of the day of the assassination.

After you have read these pages, answer the following questions.

When was Archduke Franz Ferdinand assassinated? Was this the first attempt on the Archduke’s life?
Believing that Serbia was to blame for their heir’s assassination, how did Austria-Hungary respond after Archduke Ferdinand’s assassination?
What neutral country did Germany invade in order to make a route to France after France declared war on Germany on August 3?
What was the official stance taken by U.S. President Woodrow Wilson at the start of World War I?
Imagine that you were an adviser to President Woodrow Wilson at the start of World War I. Would you have advised for or against a policy of neutrality? Defend your position in a brief memorandum, assuming your audience is President Wilson.
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