AP European History : Political Parties; Elites; Ideologies; Mass Politics

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for AP European History

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Example Questions

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Example Question #1 : Political Parties; Elites; Ideologies; Mass Politics

All of the following political parties had representation in the first parliament of the Third French Republic (1871-1876) EXCEPT __________.

Possible Answers:

Orleanists

Communists

Republicans

Legitimists

Bonapartists

Correct answer:

Communists

Explanation:

The Third French Republic was inaugurated after the overthrow of Emperor Napoleon III. It reinstated a parliamentary-based Republican form of government to France in 1871. Despite its Republican nature, the Parliament actually was composed mainly by a majority of various Royalists rather than Republicans, although they were split between the rival Orleanist, Legitimist, and Bonapartist groups. As the Third Republic moved towards the twentieth century, more liberal groups, including Socialists and Communists, would find a place in French politics.

Example Question #2 : Political Parties; Elites; Ideologies; Mass Politics

Which of the following English monarchs did NOT belong to the Tudor family?

Possible Answers:

Edward VI

Henry VII

Henry VIII

Elizabeth I

James I

Correct answer:

James I

Explanation:

Henry VII was the founder of the Tudor dynasty in England, and his son was Henry VIII. In turn, Edward VI and Elizabeth I were both children of Henry VIII who ruled over England. Elizabeth I had no heirs upon her death, and the throne passed to James I, who inaugurated the Stuart dynasty.

Example Question #2 : Political Parties; Elites; Ideologies; Mass Politics

The Communist Manifesto was written by __________.

Possible Answers:

Vladimir Lenin and Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Josef Stalin and Leon Trotsky

Thomas Malthus and Thomas Hobbes

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels

Adam Smith and David Ricardo

Correct answer:

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels

Explanation:

The Communist Manifesto was written by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels in 1848. It outlined the beliefs of communism and socialism, providing a unique approach to historical study. Marx portrayed history as a battle of the classes, with the merchant and middle class finally overcoming the landed aristocracy in the nineteenth century; Marx predicted that the working class would shortly overcome the middle and upper classes.

Example Question #3 : Political Parties; Elites; Ideologies; Mass Politics

Reactionaries in nineteenth-century Europe were __________.

Possible Answers:

desperate for political change

entirely destroyed or exiled

nonviolent and deeply religious

opposed to political change

in support of the communist movement

Correct answer:

opposed to political change

Explanation:

Reactionary, as a political term, means opposed to reform or intent on returning to an even less progressive period in the past. On the European nineteenth-century spectrum, reactionary is as far to the right as you can go, further past conservative, and the polar opposite of radical. Reactionaries in nineteenth-century Europe were the absolute monarchs and nobles who opposed any political or social reform to improve the conditions and power of the lower classes.

Example Question #2 : Political Parties; Elites; Ideologies; Mass Politics

Which of the following ideas formed the most important point of Vladimir Lenin's interpretation of Marx?

Possible Answers:

Any socialist revolutionary movement must go through regular, periodic purges of counter-revolutionary elements within the movement's midst.

Any socialist revolution must not be confined to a single country, but must quickly spread to all countries in order to prevent the revolutionary state succumbing to a hostile capitalist world.

People of Russian descent, and Russian descent only, are destined to bring socialist revolution to life due to the special nature of Russian history.

The establishment of socialism via the dictatorship of the proletariat calls for the establishment of an elite "vanguard party" in order to lead the revolution and raise the political consciousness of the masses.

Urbanization and industrialization are actually impediments to socialist revolution, and therefore the revolution must focus on the needs of agrarian peasants.

Correct answer:

The establishment of socialism via the dictatorship of the proletariat calls for the establishment of an elite "vanguard party" in order to lead the revolution and raise the political consciousness of the masses.

Explanation:

In the famous 1902 pamphlet What is to be done?, Lenin outlined his vision of the "vanguard," a dedicated group of effective and professional revolutionaries that educated the workings class on class issues and effected political mobilization. Lenin believed that labor organizations such as unions were, on their own, insufficient to effectively bring about revolution. The revolution needed elites or intellectuals who understood how society worked outside of the narrow views available to the members of one particular class.

Example Question #5 : Political Parties; Elites; Ideologies; Mass Politics

In which country did the style of authoritarian politics known as fascism first take power?

Possible Answers:

Portugal

Italy

Spain

Austria

Germany

Correct answer:

Italy

Explanation:

Benito Mussolini's National Fascist Party was founded in 1921; it was the first European fascist movement that came to power after Mussolini's March on Rome in 1922. Though fascism would later come to influence movements in many other countries, the ideology's roots lay in Italy. Mussolini's party formed from a split in the Italian Socialist Party. Mussolini and the other future fascists supported Italian intervention in the war in order defeat the traditionalist regimes in Germany and Austria. Fascism was heavily influenced by the left wing of turn-of-the-century European politics, despite the fact that the movement later came to be seen as a far-right movement. Fascism held on to its radical roots, but it came to criticize the class-based view of society of left-wingers. Fascists came to view history as a struggle of nations or races, and most fascist movements came to argue for class cooperation in order to benefit the state or the race.

Example Question #6 : Political Parties; Elites; Ideologies; Mass Politics

Anticipating the death of a childless Queen Anne, British Parliament established that the line of succession would go through the lineage of which of the following individuals?

Possible Answers:

Sophia of Hanover

William the Conqueror

Mary, Queen of Scots

The Duke of Gloucester

Correct answer:

Sophia of Hanover

Explanation:

Queen Anne was the last of the Stuart monarchs, and while she gave birth multiple times, none of her children survived into adulthood, leaving no clear heir. Parliament feared that there would be an attempt by Catholic members of the Stuart family to take the throne after her death, which would have resulted in a great deal of violence and bloodshed. In order to ensure that the monarchy stayed with a Protestant, the Act of Settlement of 1701 was passed, which stated that the heir to the throne was to be Sophia of Hanover, a German noblewoman who was the granddaughter of James I of England, and that the line of succession would extend through her descendants as long as they were not Catholic. Sophia died before Anne did, and then upon Anne’s death, Sophia’s son, George, became King George I of England.

Example Question #8 : Political Parties; Elites; Ideologies; Mass Politics

Which of the following countries did not have a Protestant ruler during the sixteenth century?

Possible Answers:

Scotland

England

Denmark

The Holy Roman Empire

France

Correct answer:

The Holy Roman Empire

Explanation:

The acceptance of Protestant beliefs in the sixteenth century, even by monarchs, was rarely uniform and often quite complicated. England, Scotland, and Denmark, all of which became firmly Protestant, had Protestant monarchs briefly ascend to the throne in the middle of their reformations, while Catholic France had a Protestant on the throne in Henry IV, until he converted to Catholicism in 1593. The Holy Roman Empire, while being the home of Martin Luther and many other reformers, was always ruled in the era by the staunchly Catholic Habsburg dynasty.

Example Question #7 : Political Parties; Elites; Ideologies; Mass Politics

Which European Monarch was given the nickname “Bloody Mary”?

Possible Answers:

Mary II of England, Scotland, and Ireland

Mary I of England

Mary of Guise

Mary, Queen of Scots

Correct answer:

Mary I of England

Explanation:

Mary I, eldest child of Henry VIII, came to power after the death of her brother, Edward VI. Mary had been displaced in the line of succession when Henry had his marriage with her mother annulled so that he could marry again and father a male heir. This, combined with the fact that she was a devout Catholic, made Mary bitter at her family. When she became queen in 1553, she reinstated Roman Catholicism as the official religion of England, although she declared that people did not have to practice her religion. Mary then went about arresting and trying many Protestant leaders for heresy in helping England break away from the Church and for helping to implement the new religion. Overall around two hundred and eighty “heretics” were sentenced to death as a result of these trials, giving Mary I the infamous nickname of “Bloody Mary.” Upon her death in 1558, she was succeeded by her sister, Elizabeth I.

Example Question #10 : Political Parties; Elites; Ideologies; Mass Politics

"Capitalism has triumphed all over the world, but this triumph is only the prelude to the triumph of labour over capital."

The above quotation is most likely to have been said by an adherent of which major ideology?

Possible Answers:

Liberalism

Fascism

Anarchism

Conservatism

Communism

Correct answer:

Communism

Explanation:

The above quotation, excerpted from V.I. Lenin's The Three Sources and Three Component Parts of Marxism (1913), expresses the communist idea that the world's workers must eventually triumph over the capitalists who exploit their labor for personal gain.

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