Weimar Germany Key Words

Weimar Germany Key Words

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Anti-Semitism Hatred of Jews
Blueprint A clear plan
Chancellor The Prime Minister
Coalition A government made up of different parties
Constitution The rules of how a country is governed
Decree Law passed without the Reichstag's approval
Democratic Rule by the people, free votes, you can criticise the government
Depression Very bad for the economy ­ less trade, businesses go bust, high unemployment
Diktat Germans called the Treaty of Versailles this because they were forced to sign it
Economic Things to do with the economy - money, jobs, prices, poverty etc.
Freikorps Ex-soldiers used the government to crush left-wing groups such as Spartakists
Gestapo Nazi secret police
Hardship Difficulties for people ­ no jobs, lack of money, high prices etc.
Hyperinflation Value of money is worthless, prices are very high
Kristallnacht Crystal Night ­ the Night of the Broken Glass
Left-wing Parties that wanted equality for poor people and workers; put people's rights
and money first rather than the country, e.g. Socialists and Communists
November Criminals Name given to the politicians who signed the armistice to end WW1
Nuremberg Laws Laws passed against Jews and other minorities
One party state Country where there is only one political party
Persecution Unfair treatment of a particular group
Plebiscite/referendum A vote
Police State Nazi methods to deal with opponents ­ camps; People's Court; Gestapo etc.
Power vacuum When nobody is in charge
President Head of state in Germany who chose the Chancellor
Proportional Electoral system where if a party gets, e.g., 10% of the vote=10% of the seats
representation in Parliament
Reichsrat The less powerful house in the German Parliament
Reichstag The most powerful house in the German Parliament (like the House of
Right-wing Parties that wanted strong leadership; put the country first (nationalist), e.g.
Schutzstaffel (SS) Set up as Hitler's bodyguard; killed the SA leaders; involved in the police state
Spartakists Communists
`Stab in the back' The idea that the German army was not defeated in WW1 and the politicians
(Dolchstoss) who signed the armistice had betrayed Germany
Sturmabteilung (SA) Brownshirts or Stormtroopers ­ they were the Nazis own `army'
Totalitarian state A country where the government controls all aspects of people's lives


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