The Thirties was a period of intense and turbulent political controversy. As the world edged its way towards war, controversy grew fiercer and more violent. At no time since the French Revolution had political theory been so widely used to explain world events. Economic rivalries and nationalist pretensions were increasingly overlooked as Communist, Fascist or Democratic became terms of praise or abuse, according to which side one was on. As each milestone — Abyssinia, Spain, Munich — was passed, the issues seemed to crystallise into the simple proposition — Democracy versus Dictatorship.