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20th century
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20th century

(19th century - 20th century - 21st century - more centuries)

Decades: 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s


As a means of recording the passage of time, the 20th century was that century which lasted from 1901-2000. Colloquially, this is often known as the nineteen hundreds (1900s), referring to the years 1900 to 1999.

The twentieth century was a remarkable shift in the very existence of humanity due to the technological, medical, social, ideological, and international innovations. Terms like genocide, holocaust, nuclear war, and terrorism rose to common language and an influence on the lives of everyday people. The trends of mechanization of goods and services and networks of global communication, which were begun in the 19th century, continued at an ever-increasing pace in the 20th. In spite of the terror and chaos, the 20th century saw many attempts at world peace. As the 35th United States President John F. Kennedy said:

"What kind of peace do we seek? I am talking about a genuine peace, the kind of peace that makes life on earth worth living. Not merely peace in our time, but peace in all time. Our problems are man-made, therefore they can be solved by man. For in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet, we all breath the same air, we all cherish our children's future, and we are all mortal."

Virtually every aspect of life in virtually every human society changed in some fundamental way or another during the twentieth century.

Table of contents
1 Important developments, events and achievements
2 Significant people
3 Decades and years

Important developments, events and achievements

Science and technology

Wars and politics

Five overall largest mass killings of the 20th century

(measured in numbers of people killed; also see
[1])

Culture and entertainment

Highest grossing films of the 20th century

  1. Titanic (1997)
  2. Star Wars (1977)
  3. (1999)
  4. E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
  5. Jurassic Park (1993)

Most critically acclaimed films

Disease and medicine

Natural resources and the environment

Significant people

World leaders

Scientists

Economics and business

Aerospace pioneers

Military leaders

Religious figures

Artists

Entertainers

Writers and poets

Sports figures

Notorious figures

Decades and years

1890s 1890 1891 1892 1893 1894 1895 1896 1897 1898 1899
1900s 1900 1901 1902 1903 1904 1905 1906 1907 1908 1909
1910s 1910 1911 1912 1913 1914 1915 1916 1917 1918 1919
1920s 1920 1921 1922 1923 1924 1925 1926 1927 1928 1929
1930s 1930 1931 1932 1933 1934 1935 1936 1937 1938 1939
1940s 1940 1941 1942 1943 1944 1945 1946 1947 1948 1949
1950s 1950 1951 1952 1953 1954 1955 1956 1957 1958 1959
1960s 1960 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969
1970s 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979
1980s 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989
1990s 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999
2000s 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009