Read each of the following two passages and answers to these items that follow. Your answers to these items should be based on the passage only.
The last half of my life was spent at one of those painful epochs of human history, during which the world seemed to be getting worse; where past victories which has seemed to be definitive had turned out to be only temporary. When I was young, Victorian optimism was taken for granted. It was thought that freedom and prosperity would spread gradually throughout the world through an orderly process, and it was hoped that cruelty, tyranny, and injustice would continually diminish. Hardly anyone was haunted by the fear of great wars. Hardly anyone thought of the nineteenth century as band interlude between past and future barbarism.
"A brief interlude between past and future barbarism" can be interpreted as: