Germany and the Growth of Democracy

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  • Germany and the Growth of Democracy
    • The Powers of the Kaiser
      • Complete control over appointment of Chancellor
        • Chancellor had power over policies and appointments
      • Could ignore the Reichstag
      • Government ministers were answerable only to him
      • No major decision made without Kaiser approval
      • Chose topics of Legistlation
    • Political Views
      • Right-Wing
        • Traditional values
        • Rights of Land-Owners
        • Middle class support
        • Lower taxes
        • Nationalistic, antisemetic
        • Wanted to expand empire
      • Left-Wing
        • Working class support
        • Social Democrat Party
          • Growing more powerful
            • Growing numbers of industrial workers
        • Worker's rights
        • Communist Party
    • Industrial Power (before war)
      • From 1890 to 1914 steel production quadrupled
      • 1/3 of the world's electrical goods produced (1914)
      • Led the world in chemical and steel industries
      • Exports grew rapidly
      • Population grew from over 40 million to nearly 68 million (1871-1914)
      • Only 1/3 people working in agriculture
        • More people in industry
    • Social Reform
      • Responses to demands for worker's rights
        • Old age pensions (1889)
        • Sickness and accident insurance schemes
        • However workers were still unhappy
          • Did not feel like they had enough power
          • Not all of them were covered
            • 14 million Germans covered (1911)
          • No unemployment benefit
      • Social Democrats gained nearly 1/3 seats (1912)
    • Prussian Militarism
      • Army swore an oath of allegiance to the Kaiser
    • Navy Laws
      • Kaiser wanted a large navy with battleships
        • To rival Britain's navy
        • Expand empire
      • Admiral von Tirpitz shared the view
        • Kaiser made him State Secretary of the Navy (1897)
      • First Navy Law (1898)
        • Seven addition battleships to the twelve already there
      • Second Navy Law (1900)
        • Doubled size of fleet to 38 battleships
      • Led to anglo-german naval rivalry
    • Impact of WW1
      • Social
        • War deepened divisions in society
        • Huge gaps in living standars of rich and poor
        • Workers bitter that they had restricted earnings during war but factory owners made vast fortunes
        • Women had worked during the war
          • Many saw this as damaging to traditional family views and society
      • Economic
        • National income was about 1/3 of what it had been in 1913
        • War left 600,000 widows and 2 million children without fathers
          • By 1925 state spent about 1/3 of budget on war pensions
        • Industrial production was about 2/3 of what it had been in 1913
        • Germany was virtually bankrupt
      • Political
        • Germany became Democratic after a revolution- Weimar Republic
        • Abdication of Kaiser
          • One of the conditions on the Treaty of Versailles was a more democratic germany
          • Naval mutiny in Kiel
          • More revolts
            • Some socialist
          • Bavaria set themselves up as an independant left-wing country
          • Kaiser abdicateed on the 9th of November 1918
        • Many ex-soldiers and civilians despised new politicians
          • Believed that heroic Hindenburg had been betrayed by weak politicians
      • The Treaty of Versailles
        • Democratic Germany
        • Blamed for the war
        • Pay compensation to countries
        • Lost overseas empire and some European territory
        • Forbidden to join with Austria and League of Nations
        • Limited armed forces
        • Lost 10% territory
        • Lost 12.5% population
        • Lost almost half iron and steel industries
        • Reparations
          • £6,600 million total
          • Annual installments of 2% of Germany's annual output
      • The Invasion of the Ruhr
        • Important industrial area in demilitarised Rhineland
        • Germany failed to pay second installment of reparations
        • January 1923
        • French and Belgian troops invaded
        • Took what was owed in raw materials and goods
        • Workers ordered to passively strike
        • Over 100 workers killed, over 100,000 expelled from region
        • Caused collapse of German currency
    • Hyperinflation
      • When prices increased rapidly and out of control
      • Government printed more money to solve economic struggles
        • Including war loans (£2,200 million)
        • Made money worthless
        • Good for Industrialists
          • Could pay off debts
        • Bad for working and middle classes
          • Savings could buy a house in 1921 could barely buy a loaf of bread in 1923
      • January-August 1923
      • Gustav Stresemann
        • Recalled worthless Marks and burned them
        • Replaced them with the Retenmark
        • Negotiated with America for loans under Dawes Plan
    • Revolts
      • Threat from the Left: The Spartacists 1919
        • Left-wing communist group
        • Against Erbert's plan for democracy
        • Rebellion
          • Early 1919
          • Set up soviets in towns
          • Erbert made agreement with Friekorp and army to put down rebellion
          • Street fighting, high casualties, leaders murdered
        • Wanted Germany to be ruled by workers' councils or soviets
        • Other rebellions followed the 1919 one
      • Threat from the Right: Friekorp
        • Right wing ex-soldiers
        • Dr Wolfgang Kapp led
          • 5,000 Friekorps into Berlin to take over government
          • Army refused to shoot them or stop the putsch
            • German workers went on strike- stopped putsch
            • After a few days Kapp left and the rising was over
      • Munich Putsch (1923)
        • Hijacked local government meeting
          • Said he was going to take over government in Bavaria
        • Police rounded up SA and Nazis (16 Nazis killed)
        • Hitler escaped but was arrested
          • Gained publicity
          • Impressed judges and got off lightly (5 years rather that life)
            • Only served 9 months
    • Nazi Party
      • National Socialist German Workers' Party
        • Both right and left wing
      • Hitler leader (1921)
      • What they wanted
        • Right-wing
          • Union of Germany and Austria
          • Only true Germans allowed (excluded Jews especially)
        • Left-wing
          • Large industries and businesses nationalised
          • Better old age pensions
        • The abolition of the treaty of Versailles
      • Gave scapegoats for Germany's problems
        • The Allies
        • Jews
        • Communists
        • The Treaty of Versailles
      • SA set up 1921
    • Weimar Republic by 1929
      • See Mind Map in File

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