Weimar Germany 1918-1929

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  • Created on: 20-05-17 11:46
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  • Weimar Republic 1918-1929
    • The Treaty Of Versailles - TRAWL.
      • Territory -The Saarland  to the League of Nations, Rhineland was demilitarized, Alsace Lorraine given back to France.
      • Armaments - Germany's army was reduced to 100,000 troops, 6 warships, no Luftwaffe, no submarines or tanks.
      • War Guilt - Germany had to take all the blame for the war
      • League Of Nations - Germany were not allowed to join the League Of Nations
      • Reparations - Germany were forced to pay £6.6 billion to amend for the damage they caused in the war.
    • Weaknesses
      • Proportional Representation (PR). This meant more extreme parties could get into the Reichstag, influencing it.
      • Article 48 - When a decision was not agreed on, the president could use Article 48 to pass laws without the Reichstag's consent.
    • Political Opposition.
      • Spartacists Revolt - Rosa Luxembourg and Karl Liebknecht led communists into Berlin taking over government headquarters.Ebert used the Freikorps to stop the revolt killing over 100 spartacists.
      • Kapp Putsch - Some of the Freikorps turned and decided to follow Wolfgang Kapp and march into Berlin threatening to overthrow the Weimar regime. Ebert was forced to flee to Dresden. Ebert ordered a general strike which meant Kapp had to give up.
    • Occupation Of The Ruhr
      • Germany were unable to pay reparations in 1923, so France and Belgium invaded the Ruhr with the intent to claim its materials as payment
        • This was allowed under the Treaty Of Versailles
        • Ebert organised a passive resistance response - all workers will still be paid while not working
          • This forced the French and Belgians out of the Ruhr
      • Germany having to pay the workers and reparations led to hyperinflation
        • This meant Germany printed out more money than it could afford
          • In November 1923, the mark (German currency) became worthless.
            • $1 was 4 marks before hyperinflation. In July 1923, $1 was 160,000 marks. In November 1923, $1 was 4.2 trillion marks
          • On top of that, the passive resistance meant no goods were being made to account for the hyperinflation
          • One case was when a woman put the money in wheelbarrow to take to the shops, but was robbed of the wheelbarrow - the money was left
        • People started to use money for domestic purposes - burn it for fuel and use it as a toy for children
        • Some benefited however - they could pay off any debts they had
    • Golden years- Gustav Stresemann
      • Gustav Stresemann solved many of the problems Germany was facing when he was appointed chancellor in Aug 1923
        • Dealing with hyperinflation - Stresemann replaced the mark with the retenmark and old marks were recalled and burned. The new currency was quickly accepted and inflation was brought under control
        • Dealing with reparations - Stresemann organised two plans with Germany - The Dawes Plan and The Young Plan. The Dawes Plan provided US loans to help with the economy. The Young Plan lowered reparations by a quarter of the original amount and Germany was given 59 years to pay them
        • The Kellog-Briand Pact and Locarno Pact - The Kellog-Briand Pact was signed by Germany alongside 65 nations, promising not to use violence to settle disputes. The Locarno Pact meant Germany, France and Belgium  to respect their joint borders.
        • Germany also joined the League Of Nations in 1926 and was given 'Great Power' which meant they could have a say in major decisions
      • Improvement Of Living Standards
        • Wages - By 1928, wages increased by 10% for The Working Class. The Middle Class did not benefit however.
        • Housing -The Government launched mass housing projects. Between 1924-31. 2,000,000 houses were built and 200,000 renovated Homelessness was reduced by 60%. This also created employment.
        • Unemployment - In 1927,the Weimar Republic extended the unemployment insurance law. Alongside,there was benefits for war veterans, wife and children and the disabled,
        • Women
          • Politically, they gained the power to vote and were elected into the Reichstag. There was equality in education , civil service jobs and pay
          • Employment - Societies expectations saw women as home makers.  Women started to work as teachers and in the civil service. Women had more freedom - they could smoke and drink and divorce was made easier.
    • Kaiser Wilhelm II abdicated on Nov 9 1918, two days before the armistice was called.
      • The Social Democratic Party of Germany, or S.P.D took over as they were the largest party in the Reichstag. Led by Freidrich Ebert, who instantly signed an armistice.
        • German people came up with the Dolchstoss ('The stab in the back myth' as they though they had been winning the war


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