• This topic covers the evolution and development of democratic multi-party states in a global context from the mid-19th century through to the end of the 20th century. The topic focuses on exploring the emergence of democratic states, the challenges they faced in maintaining and extending democratic practices (sometimes unsuccessfully), responses to social, economic and political issues, and the extension of constitutional rights. Examination questions for this topic will expect students to make reference to specific democratic states in their responses, and some examination questions will require discussion of states from more than one region of the world. In order for students to be able to make meaningful comparisons across all aspects of the prescribed content, it is recommended that a minimum of three democratic states should be studied.



    Prescribed Content

    Emergence of democratic states

    • Conditions that encouraged the demand for democratic reform: aftermath of war and/or political upheaval; political, social and economic factors; external influences
    • The role and significance of leaders
    • Development of political parties, constitutions and electoral systems; the significance/impact of those developments

    The development of democratic states

    • Factors influencing the evolution of democratic states: immigration; ideology; economic forces; foreign influences
    • Responses to, and impact of, domestic crises
    • Struggle for equality: suffrage movements; civil protests

    Impact of democracy on society

    • Social and economic policies and reforms: education; social welfare; policies towards women and minorities; the distribution of wealth
    • The extent to which citizens benefit from those policies
    • Cultural impact; freedom of expression in the arts and media