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Who can tell us most about the nuclear arms race, Robert McNamara or Dr Strangelove?

Dr StrangloveDr. Strangelove, it is a classic dark comedy film by Stanley Kubrick. It is sometimes introduced to  undergrad history degrees to exemplify cold war nuclear rivalry by the 1960s.

Eric Schlosser from the New Yorker claimed in 2014 it was all very realistic. Really?! Isn’t it bit of a farce….?

Comparing the film to a sensible Secretary of State’s speech should help us realise the madness of its plot… or will it!

You students will examine a Secretary of State speech and the quirky comedy to find out what is the message of each. They will then work out, using good old contextual knowledge who they think had a better view on Mutually Assured Destruction.

This enquiry covers some of  the arms race section of the spec.

All of this ends, if you wish, by doing some exam practice. At least it will keep SLT happy when they do their work scrutiny!

Download lesson

  • Lesson presentation: PowerPoint
  • Lesson write-up: PDF
  • Resource 1-3: PDF
  • Worksheet 1: PDF

Price: £12.99

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