Nazi Germany 1933-1963 Revision Guide

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Germany 1933-1963 Revision Guide
Exam Board: OCR
Exam Length: 1 hour 30 minutes
Module title: Dictatorship and Democracy in Germany 1933-1963
Remember that this is a document (source) based paper and should not be approached like your
essay paper. Try to do the following:
1. For both a and b questions, compare the sources point by point. Consider: authorship
and purpose; audience; date ­ set in context if you can; type of source (i.e. public
or private etc). This is what is known as the provenance of the source. Consider the
context of the source (what was going on at the time) ­ the date should give you an idea
­ as this might explain its standpoint. You may well have to include some background
knowledge to help put the sources in context. Consider reliability, utility, typicality
2. You can agree or disagree with the proposition of the question in b, but you must
consider both sides of the argument. Try to fit the sources into one side or the other,
but they may be more complicated than this suggests. Try to think of contextual
knowledge that could be used to support the specific sources given and/or the
proposition set in the question. Always consider the reliability of the sources, and
particularly for part b, the limitations or utility of the sources ­ what they leave out
and exactly how much they can tell us about the focus for the exam. Your discussion of
the sources should be around 60-70% of your answer. Obviously some of that will be
putting the sources in context (and, therefore, using some background knowledge). The
rest of your answer should be background knowledge beyond that suggested in the
Key Question 1: How effectively did Hitler establish and consolidate Nazi
1. The Rise of Hitler
You do not need to revise your work on the early years of the Weimar Republic. This is just
background. You do need to revise the main factors which helped Hitler to power, however. The
starting point of the paper is 1933, so any sources would be on the period just before Hitler came
to power.
The economic depression/Unemployment ­ The Wall Street Crash in 1929 brought
significant economic problems in Germany, particularly mass unemployment.
Unemployment peaked at 6 million by January 1932, although it had begun to fall
before Hitler came to power. Although inflation was greatly feared (due to memories
of the hyperinflation of 1923), it was not a problem during the depression and prices
actually fell. The government followed deflationary policies, however (policies designed
to minimise inflation) and aimed to reduce expenditure. Eventually, they introduced
public works schemes to try to stimulate the economy. The economic problems led to the
fall of Chancellor Muller's SPD-led coalition government. This was the last government
to have a majority in the Reichstag.

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The poor economic situation led to increased support for extremist parties (both right
wing groups like the Nazis and the Communists ­ KPD). Promises of job creation schemes
gained the Nazis votes ­ by the winter of 1932 one-third of the German workforce was
unemployed. The depression also helped to undermine people's faith in the democratic
system of the Weimar Republic and enabled opponents of democracy to undermine it.…read more

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May 1928 ­ Nazis gain 2.6% of the vote
Sept 1930 ­ 18.3% of the vote ­ swing to extremist groups. KPD vote also rises.
July 1932 ­ 37.3% of the vote ­ peak of Nazi vote- highest ever in a free election
Nov 1932 ­ 33.1% of the vote ­ Nazi vote already beginning to drop ­ by about 2
million votes.…read more

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Ernst Rohm and participated in the 1923 Munich Putsch. Rohm, like the Strasser
brothers, represented the more radical, socialist side of Nazism. Hitler saw the SA at
this stage as the army of a potential Nazi state. Most members of the SA were
ex-soldiers, young, often had a hatred of Communism etc. Joining the SA gave them a
focus in life and many observers commented on the `order and discipline' of the SA.…read more

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­ a common SPD saying was `Anything but
Hitler.' Bruning banned the SA in April 1932 to try to control increasing street
March-April 1932 ­ the Presidential elections ­ Hitler stood against Hindenburg
and the KPD candidate, Ernst Thalmann. Although Hindenburg was re-elected as
president, Hitler gained 37% of the vote, leading to calls from some that he should
be included in the government.
Bruning's fall ­ General Schleicher, who had supported Bruning as Chancellor
initially, turned against him.…read more

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Reichstag, which it was unlikely to get. Forcing a change might provoke
civil war. In September 1932, after the Reichstag's vote of no confidence in Papen,
Hindenburg had considered not calling new elections, but Schleicher persuaded him to due to
the fear of provoking a potential civil war.
2. Continuation of democracy
This seemed unlikely as the majority of Germans by 1932 were voting for parties such as the
Nazis who were hostile to the democratic system.…read more

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Chancellors. However, the Nazis did have a base of
popular support, but this peaked at only 37% and had already begun to drop by
November 1932.
Hitler did not seize power by force. Hindenburg agreed to a Hitler government,
although he never liked Hitler personally. However, the manipulation of events behind
the scenes (`backstairs intrigue'), not just by Hitler, but by the elites themselves, made
Hitler's rise to power controversial.…read more

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Making concessions (making promises to win support) ­ E.g. Promising a monopoly of
power to the army, making the Concordat with the Catholic Church, getting the Centre
Party to support the Enabling Act.
Appearing moderate ­ Purge of the SA to please the army and elites, appearing to
defend Christianity, stressing traditions and family values.
Propaganda ­ E.g. Ministry of Propaganda set up.
Gleichschaltung (`co-ordination' or `bringing into line') ­ This meant replacing or taking
over existing institutions and putting them under Nazi control.…read more

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Hitler's motives for the SA purge, arguing that he wanted to
remove anyone who knew too much about his own past/sexual history. This is more of
a minority view, however, and it is likely that the main reasons for the purge were to
please the army and elites, and further Hitler's own position and power.
The SA were targeted by members of the SS on Hitler's orders.…read more

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March 1933 and the voting for the Enabling
Overall, Hitler's methods were legal on the surface in that he worked with the constitution. However,
his actions were always surrounded by violence and intimidation and he was not honest about his real
intention, which was to create a personal dictatorship. You could also argue that it becomes
meaningless to speak of `legality' after August 1934 since the law lost all independence and became
subject to Hitler's rule.…read more



Absolutely fantastic! Thankyou!

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