In the article the First World War is seen as the transition from the ideology of Enlightenment to the emerging world of mass man. The specific features of this war are formulated which radically distinguish it from previous conflicts of different scale. It is shown that the First World War has discovered and tested a new control over human masses. The particular importance of the First World War for Russia is analyzed, for which it has become the beginning of the cultural catastrophe. The ideology and practice based on the belief that any person can be transformed by changing the external forms of his existence have succeeded, while the intellectual parties of opposition, particularly the KD’s aspired to democracy and respect for individual rights. After the formal end of the First World War it continued both in domestic and foreign policy of several European countries, primarily in Germany and Russia. This continuation is reflected in the labour armies, reinforced by the propaganda, in the shift from religion to ideology, in the establishment of totalitarian regimes, deriving its power from the idea of the constant struggle. At the end the First World War opened up the possibility of transition to mass man, united in humankind.
From the first days of the war there appeared a large number of cartoons mocking the German army and the German people in the French press and on postcards. These cartoons - often woefully primitive and vulgar- allow to understand the reasons which forced the French to fight against the Germans, they show how the French perceived the war, especially in the beginning of the conflict, when the cartoons appeared in large numbers, and when they expressed the most cruel motives. Firstly, caricatures ridiculed the Germans. Secondly, they emphasized the danger caused by their invasion, accompanied by atrocities. Thirdly, the cartoons depicted the abomination, and the inhumanity of the enemy, both these qualities made the Germans an intermediary between a man and a pig. Caricature is, certainly, a popular aspect of propaganda, which turned out to be quite consistent with people’s preferences. This kind of genre is not only the evidence of the atrocities of the war, but also reveals the cruelty of creative thinking and is a constituent part of that total war.