History Theme 2: The European Construction in the Context of the Cold War and a Multi-polar World (1940s to today)

This is a broad theme covering the development of the European project after WW2 through to today in the context of the Cold War:

– Cold War (Truman Doctrine, Marshall Plan)

– The European Project (Treaty of Rome and later expansions)

– The Multi-polar World

Part One: these two lessons will deal with Winston Churchill’s call for a united Europe, the Schuman Declaration and the creation of the European Coal and Steel Community.

The first 13 minutes of this programme chart the start of the cold war and the beginning of the European construction from the Benelux agreement of 1944 through to the Schuman Declaration of 1950 and the signing of the Treaty of Rome in 1957.

This Powerpoint surveys the role of Churchill and Schuman at the dawn of the European project:

Europe and Cold War Pt1

Further information about keys figures and developments:




Documents to analyze:

The European Coal and Steel Community

Video on European Founding Fathers:

PART TWO: Europe and the Marshall Plan

The Marshall Plan, formally European Recovery Program (April 1948–December 1951), was a U.S.-sponsored program designed to rehabilitate the economies of 17 western and southern European countries in order to create stable conditions in which democratic institutions could survive.

The United States feared that the poverty, unemployment, and dislocation of the post-World War II period were reinforcing the appeal of communist parties to voters in western Europe. On June 5, 1947, in an address at Harvard University, Secretary of State George C. Marshall advanced the idea of a European self-help program to be financed by the United States, saying:

The truth of the matter is that Europe’s requirements for the next three or four years of foreign food and other essential products—principally from America—are so much greater than her present ability to pay that she must have substantial additional help or face economic, social, and political deterioration of a very grave character.

Marshall Plan Activity:

Hist Marshall Plan Activity


Part Three: Britain’s Application to join the EEC in 1962/63

Five years after the signing of the Treaty of Rome by the SIX (France, Germany, Italy, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands) in 1957 which created the EEC (European Economic Community) Britain also applied to join but was refused not once but twice by De Gaulle.

Chronology and activities related to the documents in ‘De Gaulle says “Non’ to Britain:

The EU and the UK timeline

De Gaulle Says ‘Non’ to Britain in 1963

The UK finally joined in 1973 with Ireland, here is a useful video:


The story of the First Enlargement of the European Community


Part Four: UK and Europe: 1970s and 1980s:

UK 1970s and 80s

The UK joins the EEC WORKSHEET

UK and EU 70s and 80s Exercises

Overview of the UK’s relationship with Europe particularly from the 1975 referendum through to the 2016 referendum:

EU history and UK 2017

Focus on the 1991 Maastricht Treaty:

Masstricht Treaty Explained

Practise Exam Style Documents about Brexit:

UK and Europe Exam Documents




A copy of this extended assignment can be found here:

Brexit Assignment for T°EuroA


Resources to help you to easily complete this assignment with a high grade:

David Cameron Promises a referendum (2013):


Official announcement of referendum result (2016):


David Cameron resigns after referendum result (2016):

The moment the UK officially leaves the EU (31st January 2020) with the new Prime Minister, Boris Johnson:


Further useful resources:

Timeline of events from 2016 to 2020 including a short video:



Link to 2016 results:



Cartoons about Brexit:















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