A woman working in a World War I factory: Image by The Guardian.

A woman working in a World War I factory: Image by The Guardian.

Results of the First World War

Results of the war.

Political effects

  • The collapse of four dynasties in Europe and their replacement by new governments. Turkey ( The Ottoman Empire) collapsed and it was turned into several states. Austria-Hungary became two states and the Hapsburg Empire collapsed and in the process Greece, Serbia, Poland and Romania gained full independence. Germany’s Empire collapsed into the Weimer Republic and the Bolsheviks seized power in Russia.
  • Change from dictatorships took place in countries like Germany, Italy and Yugoslavia. These were later replaced with other dictatorships for example Fascim in Germany and Italy.
  • Change in balance of power as Russia, Japan and the USA became new world powers.
  • Spread of nationalism outside Europe as it spread into India and Africa.

Social effects

  • Loss of lives as nearly 17 million people died in the war.
  • Breaking down of families as fathers and sons left their homes to go to war.
  • War inflicted injuries with an estimated casualty of 30 million.
  • Women gained the right to vote in elections after the war.
  • Homelessness as a lot of homes were destroyed during the war.
  • he use of family planning techniques emerged after this period.
  • Women became emancipated as they started to work in factories due to labour shortages.
  • Orphans were left by parents who died in the war.
  • There was hunger due to food shortages as agricultural and manufacturing production had been destroyed by the war.

Economic effects

  • War debts accumulated as European powers borrowed heavily to finance the war effort.
  • High unemployment rates as agriculture and manufacturing were disrupted while many people returning from the war needed employment.
  • Infrastructure such as buildings, roads, ports and industries were destroyed.
  • There was a decline n European economic dominance as the U.S, Japan and Asia took over African markets.
  • High taxation and inflation as taxes were increased to finance the war and also to pay back the war debts.
  • Food shortages resulted as industries and the agriculture sector had been re-purposed to cater for war needs.
  • Trade unions resulted with workers trying to fight the bad working conditions in the industry.
  • Scientific developments to develop equipment for the war and also mass production of goods.