The butterfly effect

The butterfly effect serves as a metaphor for what is known as deterministic chaos or reliance on initial conditions to represent the idea that small causes can have significant effects. As a result, the idea can be seen in a variety of historical events, including wars, suicide, political assassinations, the effects of leadership choices, etc. The economic, social, and political trends that the world's society adopted, particularly during the First and Second World Wars and the assassinations of prominent leaders of the 19th and 20th centuries, are proof that many historical events have had a significant impact on the world today. Moreover, the butterfly effect can be both positive and adversively as expounded in the essay.

The First World War

The occurrence of the First World War influenced the direction that the world took in a broad range of ways. For instance, Germany couldn’t be of existence, and it needs to be under a quite dramatic different management (Kaldis et al. 200). However, Germany provided a link between major fights that occurred during the First World War, which includes the fight in Eastern Europe and Western Europe, and none of the actions by Germany could justify global conflagration. Moreover, it was not adequate to prevent Franz Ferdinand to be shot in Sarajevo as the Ottoman Empire was crumbling by the back half of the nineteenth century (Kaldis et al. 205). Specifically, the shooting led to Russia and Austria to compete for who would have more control and influence as well as get a significant share of territory given that Ottoman had withdrawn. The decline of Ottoman had already resulted in the central conflicts that involved Russia and Austria. Further, following the anticipated dissolution of the league of three of three emperors, a war that involved the two of them on either side, while it could not be avoided, was far more likely than not (Kaldis et al. 208).

The above elements bring back the two inevitable outcomes: either Germany existed with a lesser aggressive management or did not exist at all. In the case of the first that took place in 1866, there was an attempt by Ferdinand Cohen Blind to assassinate Otto von Bismarck. He was the Prussian foreign minister and minister present as well as of the people who played a principal role in the unification of Germany in the nineteenth century (Kaldis et al. 214). However, he failed, and if he had succeeded, the world would have a different look. Furthermore, it should be noted that the unification of Germany under the Prussian aegis took the enormous force of will and political skill and as historical research indicates, Prussia did not have someone of Bismarck's level of competence to replace him. The replacement of Bismarck could not have done the same work that Bismarck did, and although Germany had come together, all the Germany states would not have been included and the country could have been much less militaristic and more liberal than the Germany Empire became (Kaldis et al. 219).

What if the First World War Never Occurred?

Ignoring the eventual WW2 events without the previous global warfare, the United States retained its prominent influence but could not have achieved a status of a superpower. Moreover, the situation means that the county would have retained its position of the strongest player in the Western hemisphere as well as a significant impact on the Pacific region but without the global power. The Ottoman Empire would have also continued to exist with its decline, but if it maintained its influence on Anatolia before its collapse into a republic is an incontestable fact. Eventually, Russia also could have become a government, not socialist preventing the aforesaid possible war with the Germany empire (Bentrovato 175). In Asia region, Japan would have resorted to assembling a colonial empire and possibly vie with Russia to accomplish their mission. However, it is not certain whether Japan would have fought China, but Taisho democracy could have survived without the great depression. What is more, Nationalist China could have possibly come to being and probably the nation would not have gone communist, but Chiang Kai Shek would have approved the policies of post-Dengism and Dengism.

From an artistic point of view, the world would have had a dramatically different look. The artistic revolutions between 1920 and 1930 were in protest against the First World War that led to a lot of bloodshed and the notion that the world could fight as it did resulted in a variety of questions on whether beauty or conventional art ever existed, which led to Dadaism. The absence of the First World War could, therefore, prevent the establishing of many art streams, such as surrealism, Dadaism or futurism, all of which played a crucial role in shaping art in a modern conception (Bentrovato 179). Additionally, interchangeable trends in literature could as well be inferred with aesthetics possibly being more conservative as compared to how they are today.

Regarding the social sphere, prejudice would have been more acceptable, and eugenics would enjoy the possibility of not being discredited. Holocausts imply that eugenics would still receive finances, anti miscegenation laws would still exist, and casual anti-Semitism would be socially accepted. Additionally, because immigration to the Metropole was not encouraged by colonial powers, the great diversity in western countries could not have been achieved, and as for the colonies, their state could have been worse (Bentrovato 186).

Besides the front elements, the great depression could not have hit the world economy. A modern economy could have looked widely different as most modern schools of the economy were established to find an answer to the question on where the depression had begun. Moreover, monetarism and Keynesianism would not have existed and survived. From the political philosophy perspective, the far right could not have achieved the great appeal it did in the 1920s and 1930s, and fascism could not be heard of because the word is meaningless since then. As mentioned, Russia would not have adopted communism as their state ideology, which would have enormous consequences on the development of the left wing (Kaldis et al. 222).

What if Adolf Hitler was Killed before WW2?

If Adolf Hitler had died before the start of the Second World War, then the warfare could have been prevented. After the WW1, historical researches postulates that the Weimar government, which assumed that Hitler’s loyalty to his army equated to allegiance to the newly formed democratic government, planted him as a mole in the DAP (Morello 370). However, the DAP won Hitler over and took over the leadership in 1921, and despite a failed coup, then renamed Nazi party continued to exist in the country, growing its strong military force while biding its time. It is noteworthy that at that particular time, most industries in Germany were funded by financial loans from the United States of America but when the great depression and the Wall Street crash hit, the Germany industry collapsed as the Americans wanted their money back. Adolf Hitler appealed to the middle and large companies classes as well as the workers resulting in landslide victories for the NSDAP in the Reichstag legislature (Morello 371).

If Hitler had died, Drexler could not have taken advantage of the great depression to build the Nazi party as much as Hitler did. The SS, SA, and Gestapo were as a result of the leadership of Hitler, and it is wise to note that without Hitler's early excellence in orature, many of the influential founders could not have come together to get the positions they did (Morello 374). Moreover, without a secured far right party, it is unarguably evident that the Germany vote would be split between the immense numbers of centrist, conservative and center left parties in Germany even during the great depression. Further, it would have prevented an efficient and quick way to respond to the economic downturn (Kaldis et al. 220).

If JFK was not Killed

Kennedy’s main reason for visiting Texas in 1963 was bringing peace to the local Democrats as he has critically needed their support in capturing the votes for the Texas Electoral College. His popularity rating was about 58% before he was assassinated and Ellis postulates that if he had won his reelection bid, Johnson was still likely to take over from him (201). The prediction is true because Kennedy was sick and his deteriorating spines made him live with a lot of pain, and his growing Addison’s disease, as well as the failure of adrenal glands, needed severe medication. Thus, it is quite unlikely that his health could have survived the second term as the president of the United States of America thereby, defaulting the seat to Lyndon Johnson (Ellis 206).

In 1962, the world creaked by annihilation when nuclear intercontinental ballistic missiles were put in Cuba by the Soviet Union. Consequently, the Cuban missile crisis hit the climax of the cold war as tensions between the united states of America and Russia were both ready to snap. However, Kennedy held diplomatic back door discussions with the soviet union, and the cold war was cooled down as Russia removed their missiles and demanded the Americans to remove their ICBMs from Turkey (Ellis 211).However, after the assassination of Kennedy and Johnson’s immediate succession, the Soviet Union went back to their aggression and continued to mistrust the US under their consequent presidents such as Carter, Ford, and Nixon. The cold war would have been shorter and warmer had Kennedy survived the assassination.

The murder of JFK speeded up the passing of the civil rights act that had stalled in the Congress for a very long time, with the Congress planning to substitute it with a bill that allowed open segregation at public places and facilities. However, after his assassination, President Johnson urged the people to pass the civil rights act as an honor for Kennedy. It is therefore prudent to indicate that the combination of Johnson and Kennedy's commitment to civil rights would have been a great war and without the assassination of the incumbent, probably wouldn’t have been passed (Ellis 223).

What if the Stock Market Never Fell?

The economic crisis that hit the world in the early 1930s as a result of the wars that led to the collapse of the stock market serves as a yard stick for the speed, depth as well as international extents of all crisis of the same kind since then. If the stock market remained standstill at that time, there would be a risk of a massive fall in the future due to the lack of understanding of its causes as well as how it spreads. The absence of the fall would imply that the coordinated tax on stock market transactions could not have been implemented in Europe and America (Miao et al. 273).

If the stock market remained firm, the United States would not have received the honor and economic power it gained by defeating the crisis. It took America a decade and a half to come out of the economic quagmire that was termed as the worst since the beginning of America. President Franklin Roosevelt, who was the newly elected president at the start of the economic disaster worked hard to bring back the optimism and confidence to the American population (Miao et al. 279). The United States stood out as an economically powerful nation, which could not have been possible if the stock market remained steadfast and firm during the economic depression.

Many lessons were learnt during the fall of the stock exchange, which could have otherwise remained unknown to people. Specifically, they mean that in the case of the similar fall in the future, people the world would go into another economic depression. For instance, after the crash of the stock market and closure of banks, most individuals did not want to lose more money, and therefore, they stopped consuming and purchasing goods (Miao et al. 297). Consequently, there was a big reduction in the total number of produced items, which also resulted in less supply of labor force. Moreover, industries, individuals as well as businesses were adversely affected, and many of the industries started reducing their workers’ wages or hours to spend less. The lack of spending by consumers caused more companies to lay off some of their employees and cut wages for those who remained while some businesses couldn’t stay open leaving most people unemployed. So many banks failed, many people lost their savings, and many industries shut down, which made the world learn its lesson (Miao et al. 302).


Small causes have huge effects as expressed in the preceding examples in the paper. The role of the past event, such as the assassination of JFK, Adolf Hitler, the First and Second World Wars as well as the fall of the stock market, in shaping the world cannot be underestimated. Therefore, it is prudent for the global society to consider the ripple effects of their actions on what they might do in the future. For instance, the United States of America faced the greatest economic challenge of all time as a result of their involvement in a war, which could have been avoided if there were no assassination.

Works Cited

Bentrovato, Denise. "Teaching World War I: An Exploratory Study of Representations of the Great War in Contemporary African Textbooks." Yesterday and Today, vol. 14, 2015, pp. 175-207.

Ellis, Thomas Sayers. Conspiracy Simile: the Assassination of JFK. University of Arizona Poetry Center, 2014.

Kaldis, Christos, James Behan, and McArton, Lloyd. "Experiences of the World Wars." QSpace, 2015.

Miao, Jianjun, Pengfei, Wang, and Lifang, Xu. "Stock Market Bubbles and Unemployment." Economic Theory, vol. 61, no. 2, 2016, pp. 273-307.

Morello, John. "Profiling Perpetrators: Putting Faces to Some of the Names of Hitler's Willing Executioners." The International History Review, 2017, pp. 1-5.

Deadline is approaching?

Wait no more. Let us write you an essay from scratch

Receive Paper In 3 Hours
Calculate the Price
275 words
First order 15%
Total Price:
$38.07 $38.07
Calculating ellipsis
Hire an expert
This discount is valid only for orders of new customer and with the total more than 25$
This sample could have been used by your fellow student... Get your own unique essay on any topic and submit it by the deadline.

Find Out the Cost of Your Paper

Get Price