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New Zealand introduces unrestricted women’s suffrage. At this point women win the principle of full political equality.
Einstein’s theory of special relativity published. It transforms the nature of modern physical knowledge.
Russian Revolution creates the first successful, long-term revolutionary state.
End of the First World War. The Habsburg and Ottoman empires collapse; maps of Europe and the Middle East are redrawn.
Outbreak of Second World War: Fifty million die worldwide in the world’s largest and most deadly conflict, which ends the long age of imperialism.
End of Second World War; when the first nuclear bomb is detonated, mankind develops the means to destroy itself.
Communist China founded: China is created as a single territorial unit with a common administration and a modernising economy.
Invention of the silicon chip is the major technical invention of the past century, making possible the computer age.
First contraceptive pill made available for women, who can now make their own biological choices about reproduction.
Collapse of Communist regimes in Europe: marks the end of the long communist experiment; Asian communism is also transformed.