A-2A Exhaustive Revision Notes on Modern World Depth Study: Germany 1918-39

These are my exhaustive revision notes for Unit 2A of the GCSE History (Specification A) syllabus for Edexcel.

I have used multiple textbooks as well as internet sources to compile these notes.

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Fall of the German Empire
October 29, 1918 ­
June 28, 1919
Causes of the Fall of the German Empire:
In Germany, the Allied naval blockade meant
By summer 1918, Germany had largely been that Germans had to begin rationing their
defeated in the Great War. Its `Spring limited resources. This was amplified by the
Offensive' of March 1918 had failed, and the poor harvest of winter 1916/17, nicknamed
Allied counterattack with the use of modern `Turnip Winter' as so many had to eat
tanks had broken the stalemate of the War. By deformed turnips, and by mid1919, 474,000
1914, 2 million soldiers had died. civilians died as a result of these resource
shortages.
The war situation had also changed because
An outbreak of Spanish influenza during the
the Russian Revolution of November 1917 had
War had caused tens of millions of deaths
caused communist groups within Germany to
across both sides of the War by 1920.
seek a revolution of their own.
Events of the Fall of the German Empire:
On November 4, 1918, sailors On November 9, 1918, the
On October 29, 1918, German at Kiel formed a mutiny calling Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany
sailors at Wilhelmshaven Frieden und Brot'. Within a abdicated and fled the country
for `
refused to follow the naval day, the mutiny spread to for Holland the next day after
order of October 24, 1918, to Hamburg, Bremen and Lubeck his government demanded
launch a suicide attack. and within four days, the and falsely declared his
mutiny reached Munich. abdication.
On November 11, 1918, the Reich Minister of Finance Matthias Erzberger signed the Armistice of
Compiègne on behalf of the new government, effectively surrendering Germany.
The Treaty of Versailles:
On June 28, 1919, five years to the day of the The Treaty of Versailles, signed with a 21gun
assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of
salute, was considered to be a dikat: Germany
AustriaEste, the Treaty of Versailles ­ the was not invited to offer its input to the Treaty
peace treaty of the Great War ­ was signed. and its articles were nonnegotiable.
Some Germans also refused to believe that the German Army was so close to defeat. They called
the Armistice a `Dolchstoss' (stab in the back) by traitors of the Army (perceived to be, amongst
others, Marxists and Jews) and called its signatories `the November Criminals'.
Important Articles of the Treaty of Versailles:
Articles 45, 51, 87,
Articles 126: Article 42: Article 80:
100 and 119:
The Anschluss
Germany lost about
(unification of
The League of Nations The Rhineland was 13% of its European
Germanspeaking
was formed. demilitarised. territory and all of its
nations) was
eleven colonies.
forbidden.
Articles 160, 181 and 198: Article 231: Article 232:
Germany was restricted to an
Germans were defined as Germany was forced to pay
army of 100,000 men, a navy
culpable for all war losses and £6.6bn in war reparations to
of six battleships with no
damages. the Allies.
submarines and no air force.
Reactions to and Effects of the Treaty of Versailles:
Germans expected the Treaty of Versailles to be favourable towards them, in part because the
Kaiser had abdicated and in part because American President Woodrow Wilson had declared a
progressive Fourteen Points policy which hoped to cultivate Germany socioeconomically. They
did not expect the majority of the treaty to be based on French Prime Minister Georges

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Clemenceau's policy of making Germans pay. The Treaty of Versailles was thus disappointing for
Germans.
Because of the Treaty of Versailles, Germany
Germans were also angry with Article 231. This
lost almost half its iron reserves and 15% of its
resulted in government unpopularity and
coal reserves, rendering the reparations
greater political instability.
unpayable.…read more

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The Spartacist Uprising and
Kapp Putsch
January 6, 1919 ­
March 1920
Causes of the Spartacist Uprising and Kapp Putsch:
Leftwing communist groups The Weimar Government was
Rightwing exmilitary groups
inspired by the Russian weak and unpopular because
were angry against the
Revolution were angered by of the Treaty of Versailles.…read more

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The political instability increased the unpopularity of the Weimar Government and caused the
Social Democrats to halve in support by June 1920. The street violence also led to the formation
of more extreme political parties, including the DAP in 1919.…read more

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Shoppers also needed to result of its support for the
carry wheelbarrows of workers in the Ruhr.
money;
Shopkeepers tried to close
their shops against
government demands.
Gustav Stresemann Reforms:
Stresemann addressed the hyperinflation by
On August 13, 1923, Gustav Stresemann,
introducing a new currency, the Rentenmark,
supported by a grand coalition government and
on October 15, 1923, alongside a new bank,
a suspension of the Weimar Constitution under
the Deutschen Rentenbank.…read more

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AlsaceLorraine,
which had been annexed by France, the
Treaties were resented by rightwing
nationalist groups.
The KelloggBriand Pact of August 1928:
In August 1928, Germany signed an international agreement alongside 64 other countries in
which states promised not to use war in order to achieve their foreign policy aims. This made
Germany appear as a respectable member of the international community.…read more

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Brüning proposed raising taxes to pay for
The government was left weak. Between unemployment benefits and cutting
March 1930 and May 1932, Heinrich Brüning unemployment benefits to make them more
served as Centre Party Chancellor ruling a affordable. With the rise of the communist KPD
minority coalition government dependent on and farright NSDAP, however, these proposals
the employment of Article 48. were unpopular both in the Reichstag and on
the streets.…read more

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German people), scrapping the Treaty of Versailles and depriving the
Jews of German citizenship. The 25Point Programme committed the
DAP to use violence to achieve its aims.
On August 7, 1920, the DAP changed its name to the
The renaming of the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP) in order to
DAP broaden its appeal to nationalists and leftwing sympathisers. The party
(August 7, 1920) also began to adopt the raised arm salute and the swastika emblem for
recognition.…read more

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Ludendorff. Hitler imprisonment to Landsberg its lack of popular supports
was put on a wellpublicised Castle. Ludendorff was and military credibility.
trial which enabled him to air acquitted of all charges.
his views nationwide.
Hitler exploited the trial to receive national publicity: the trial was recorded and filmed.…read more

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The NSDAP after the Wall
Street Crash
September 14, 1930 ­
January 30, 1933
Following the Wall Street Crash on October 29, 1929, the NSDAP increased in support as German
voters turned to extreme parties for extreme solutions to extreme economic problems.
The NSDAP's appeal to various groups:
By offering autarky (economic The NSDAP appealed to
The NSDAP offered Arbeit und independence and farmers by protecting them
Brot to working class selfsufficiency), the NSDAP against collectivisation policies
Germans.…read more

Comments

GCSErevision2016

Great work love it

GCSErevision2016

Is it for the A* - G syllabus or 9 - 1

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