Democracy & Nazism

  • Created by: Ashley2K
  • Created on: 19-05-17 17:23
What was beginning to happen to Germany in October 1918?
Germany was beginning to lose the First World War, their allies had surrendered and Germany was suffering severe economic problems.
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What did Kaiser Wilhelm II do in response to this?
On October 1 1918 he asked Prince von Baden, a moderate conservative to form a government. This government included some SPD members.
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What happened on the 3rd October 1918?
Prince Max wrote to US President Wilson asking for an armistice. Weeks of negotiation then followed.
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What constitutional reforms did Max's government introduce to Germany
1. The Kaiser's powers were curtailed 2. The chancellor and the government were made accountable to the Reichstag
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Why did pressure for Kaiser Wilhelm II begin to increase throughout 1918?
Many Germans blamed Willhelm for Germany's misfortunes and President Wilson regarded him as an obstacle for peace.
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What was Germany's High Seas Fleet tasked with on 29th October 1918?
They were going to be sent out on a do-or-die mission against the Royal Navy, this led to mutiny among sailors at Kiel. Dockworkers and soldiers joined the sailors and set up soviets.
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Once abandoned by his generals following the Kiel mutiny, what did Wilhelm do on 9th November 1918?
He fled to the Netherlands, Prince Max then resigned and a government led by SPD leader Friedrich Ebert took over.
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What did Ebert's government do on 11th November?
They agreed to Allied armistice terms, the German troops withdrew beyond the Rhine and Germany surrendered its air force.
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Despite a Communist threat from November 1918-January 1919, why wasn't there a communist revolution?
German socialists were bitterly divided because the SPD upheld democracy whilst Communists and Independant Socialists demanded radical immediate social and economic change.
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Which party held the majority in the 1919 elections for a National Asssembly?
The SPD won with 38% of the vote followed by The Centre and the Democrats.
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What were the strengths of the Weimar constitution?
1. It was thoroughly democratic 2. Proportional representation ensured a variety of interests were represented in the Reichstag? 3. Presidential powers were limited 3. Article 48 was intended to ensure government would continue to function in crisis.
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What were the weaknesses of the Weimar constitution?
1. Proportional representation encouraged the formation of new parties, this led to short-lived and weak coalitions 2. Article 48 provided the president with the authority to suspend civil rights.
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Why was the peace settlement of January 1919 so harsh against Germany?
Despite Germans expecting to be treated leniently based on Wilson's Fourteen Points, many countries such as France was determined to punish Germany and reduce its potential power.
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What were Wilson's Fourteen Points?
These were put forward by American president Wilson in January 1918 as a basis for peace talks at Versailles. These points were nowhere near as harsh as the terms Germany received in the Treaty of Versailles.
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What were the territorial terms of the Treaty of Versailles?
1. Germany lost Alsace-Lorraine to France and other territory across Europe 2. The Rhineland was to be occupied by the Allies for 15 years 3. Germany lost the Saar 4. Anschluss was forbidden 5. Germany lost all colonies
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What were the military terms of the Treaty of Versailles?
1. Germany was to have no tanks, submarines, large battleships or military aircraft.
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What were the reparations and war guilt agreements of the Treaty of Versailles?
1. Germany had to accept full responsibility for causing the war 2. This war guild provided a moral base for the Allied demands for Germany to pay reparations
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How did the German people view the Treaty of Versailles?
The German people regarded the Versailles Treaty as a humiliating dikak, as they expected to be treated more leniently. This meant the Republic was associated with defeat and humiliation.
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What was the 'stab in the back' myth?
In 1919 Hindenburg declared the Versailles Treaty was signed because of the anti-patriotic sentiments of left-wing politicians rather than weaknesses of the army. This acted as strong right-wing propaganda.
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How did the legacy of the war cause the new Republic severe socio-economic difficulties from 1919-22?
1. The republic was burdened with a terrible financial legacy, with Germany's national debt at 144M marks in 1919. The German government had financed the war through short-term loans and by printing money.
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How did the problem of reparations cause the new Republic severe socio-economic difficulties from 1919-22?
In May 1921 the Allies set reparations at 18 billion gold marks.
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How did the problem of inflation cause the new Republic severe socio-economic problems from 1919-22?
By December 1922, Germany's national debt had reached $469,000 marks
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How did inflation benefit the new Republic for a short time from 1919-22?
1. German goods were cheap abroad, meaning they recovered its market overseas 2. There was still little unemployment, with unemployment at just 1.8% in 1921.
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Why were socialist politics confused from 1919-22?
1. The SPD was commited to democracy 2. The KPD wanted to overthrow Weimar 3. The USPD wanted a socialist society but within a democratic framework.
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When did the USDP end?
In December 1920, its members then joined the KPD or SPD.
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What was the right-wing threat from 1919-22?
The right-wing political forces rejected democracy, they vied with each other to attack the Versailles settlement.
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Who did the conservative right support?
The conservative right, many of whom wished to restore the monarchy, generally supported the the DNVP party.They excerted influence in the army, civil service, judiciary and education.
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Who were the radical right?
The radical right groups had little sympathy for democracy or conservatives. They were anti-socialist and anti-Jewish, wanting to destroy the Republic. The Freikorp were particularly attracted to the radical right.
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What was the Kapp Putsch?
Lead by right-wing politicians Dr Wolfgang Kapp and General von Luttwitz, the Putsch was an attempt to overthrow the Republic. In March 1920, after the ordered disbanding of a Freikorp unit, 5000 Freikorps marched into Berlin to assist Kapp and
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What was the Kapp Putsch? (2)
Luttwitz. Kapp declared the Weimar Republic was overthrown. Despite requests from the government to put down the Putsch, the Reichswehr
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Why did the Kapp Putsch fail?
Despite claims an SPD strike ended the putsch, Ultimately, the Putsch failed because the Reichwehr leaders, while not crushing, did not back the Kapp and it failed to gain support. Kapp and Luttwitz fled abroad.
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What other signs of political unrest were there from 1919-1922?
1. In the Ruhr, Communists tried to seize power in March 1920 2. Right-wing groups assassinated leading politicians whom they considered traitors.
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Who were The Reichswehr?
The Reichswehr was the army, the size of which was extremely limited by the Treaty of Versailles. Whilst the Reichswehr could be used to suppress a Communist revolt, there was no guarantee it would put down the right.
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How did the judiciary mete out unequal justice from 1919-22?
1. Those involved in the Ruhr uprising were severely punished 2. Those who supported the Kapp Putsch were let off virtually sscot free.
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Why were the 1920 elections a disaster for the Weimar coalition parties?
They were a disaster for the SPD, Centre and DDP because they had commanded 78% of the vote before the election, after they only had 45% leading to a series of weak, short-lived coalition governments.
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What was the Ruhr crisis of 1923?
When Germany failed to deliver reparation payments in January 1923, French and Belgium troops occupied the Ruhr. The Weimar government ordered the suspension of reparations and supported 'passive resistance'
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What was the impact of the Ruhr crisis of 1923?
The cost of the occupation was huge. The government issued vast quantities of paper banknotes resulting in the collapse of the value of the mark. By November 1923 the exchange rate stood at 4.2 billion marks to the dollar.
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Who benefited from the hyperinflation of 1923?
Groups such as landowners, businessmen and homeowners benefitted because they were abel to pay off their debts, mortgages and loans with worthless money.
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Who suffered as a result of the hyperinflation of 1923?
Groups such as people with savings, those living on fixed imcomes or welfare support and ordinary workers.
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To what extent was the hyperinflation of 1923 a catastrophe?
It wasn't considered a huge catastrophe because there was little unemployment, however many Germans undoubtedly suffered in 1923.
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How did Communist support increase as the economic crisis deepened?
Communist support increased, in October Communist leaders planned strikes in Saxony, Ebert acted firmly and the insurgency was supressed almost before it began.
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What was the Munich Putsch of 1923?
The Munich Putsch was Hitler (leader of the Nazi Party's) attempt as seizing power. On the 8th of November 600 Nazi's surrounded a beer cellar and Hitler burst in wielding a revolver announcing the revolution had begun.
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Why did the Munich Putsch of 1923 fail?
After Ludendorff insisted some Bavarian leaders be released, they informed Berlin of the situation, the Weimar government ordered the Bavarian authorities to crush the Putsch. On 9th November Hitler led 3000 men into Munich hoping for a show of mass
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Why did the Munich Putsch of 1923 fail? (2)
support, armed police opened fire and 16 marchers died. Hitler was then arrested.
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How did the failures of the right help the Weimar survive its early problems by 1924?
1. The Kapp Putsch had quickly collapsed 2. The right-wing radicals and conservatives rarely did well in elections 3. Right-wing groups were not united
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How did the failures of the left help Weimar survive its early problems by 1924?
1. Most German workers supported the SPD, who opposed revolution 2. Socialists were divided 3. The army was willing to put down left-wing threats
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How did the actions of Ebert help Weimar survive its early problems by 1924?
1. He took strong action against the Communists 2. Stood firm against the Kapp Putsch and ruled under Article 48 during the Munich Putsch
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How did the actions of Stresemann help Weimar survive its early problems by 1924?
Upon coming to power as leader of the DVP, Stresemann 1. Called off passive resistance in the Ruhr 2. Promised to resume reparation payments 3. Set in motion plans to introduce a new currency
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What other factors helped Weimar survive its early problems by 1924?
1. German resentment was channeled more towards the French than towards Weimar itself 2. Despite inflation, workers did not suffer to the point they would vote for extremes.
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How did Stresemann stabilise the currency in November 1923?
1. They introduced the 'Rentenmark' a new currency. One dollar was now equal to 4.2 Rentenmarks, this success was largely down to Schacht
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What was The Dawes plan of April 1924?
The Dawes plan proposed that whilst not reducing Germany's overall reparations bill, it should be paid over a longer time: 1. Germany was to make annual payments of £50M for the first five years, after which it would rise to £125M.
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What was the Young plan of February 1929?
The Young's plan, suggested by Owen Young created a final plan for reparations: 1. Germany was to pay 2,000M marks a year for the next 59 years 2. Allied controls over Germany's railways and banks were scrapped.
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What signs of economic progress was there in the Weimar Republic from 1924-29?
1. German exports rose my 40% 2. German agriculture became more mechanised and more efficient 3. In 1927 a compulsory unemployment insurance covered 17M workers, the largest of its kind in the world.
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What signs of economic weakness was there in the Weimar Republic from 1924-29?
1. Unemployment was on the rise 2. Between 1925 and 1929 German imports always exceeded exports 3. After 1924 governments continually ran deficits, relying on foreign loans to balance the books.
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How did women's position improve in society under the Republic.
1. Women gained equal rights under the Weimar constitution 2. More women found work in new occupations 3. More young women spent their leisure time at sports clubs, dance halls and in cinemas.
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What signs were there that women's position in society hadn't actually improved under the Republic?
1. The proportion of women who worked outside the home during the 1920s remained roughly the same as pre 1914 2. Attitudes to women's role in society remained conservative.
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How did 1920s local governments try to improve Germany's urban environment?
They constructed public parks, libraries and better transport.
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How did left-wing critics of the old order hope to change the education system?
They hoped to change the education system by 1. Breaking down the religious barriers that kept Catholic and Protestant children apart 2. Ending the virtual monopoly by the elite and middle classes of secondary-grammar schools and university.
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Why did these reforms have limited success?
1. The majority of schools remained denominational 2. In 1930 under 10% of secondary-school pupils were from working class families.
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How did the Republic embrace artistic experimentation?
1. The Weimar constitution proclaimed the freedom of arts and scholarship 2. Governments favoured the performance or display of avant-garde works to show their progressiveness.
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What was avant-garde art?
1. Bauhaus, a new school of architecture and design broke down the barriers between art and science 2. Bertolt Brecht's theatre in Berlin was regarded as one of the most progressive in Europe
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What was the cultural importance of Berlin during Weimar's golden age?
Berlin's nightclubs provided outlets for experimental performers. Berlin also developed as a showcase for cultural imports, like jazz from the USA.
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What was the impact of avant-garde on society during Weimar's golden age?
Public reaction to modernist works was diverse, ranging from enthusiasm, through curiosity to bewilderment or hostility.
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How did radio develop during Weimar's golden age?
Radio broadcasting began in Berlin in 1923: 1. The cost of buying sets made radio a medium dominated by the middle class 2. By 1930 some 3 million radio sets were registered in Germany.
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How did the cinema develop during Weimar's golden age?
By the late 1920s there were nearly 5000 cinemas in Germany, most German film production was concerned with escapism.
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What signs of opposition to modernism were the during Weimar's golden age?
1. Many on the right believed that Weimar's cultural life was degenerate based on foreign and Jewish influence 2. Church organisations campaigned against immorality in modern life.
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How did extremism decline throughout Weimar's golden age of 1924-29?
1. There were no further attempts to overthrow the government 2. In the 1924 and May 1928 elections, the extremist parties lost ground.
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What role did Hindenburg play in political developments from 1924-29?
1. Hindenburg was a First World War hero and was elected President after Ebert's death in 1925. Despite many fearing Hindenburg would pose a threat to the republic, Hindenburg supported the Republic.
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What other factors of political stability were there from 1924-29?
1. In the 1928 election, 76% of the electorate supported pro-Weimar parties 2. The Grand Coalition in 1928, led by the SPD's Hermann Muller, commanded a secure majority in the Reichstag.
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What role did Hindenburg play in extremist support from 1924-29?
In ways, Hindenburg's election in 1925 was a vote against the Republic.
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What signs of political instability were there from 1924-29?
1. Given that there were around 20 political parties, it proved impossible to create a coalition with a majority in the Reichstag which could consistently agree on policy.
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What was Germany's international situation from 1921-24?
From 1921 to 1924 relations with the Allies had been poor. The Ruhr occupation being one of the contributors to this mistrust. But the ending of the Ruhr crisis, and the introduction of the Dawes plan led to an improvement in relations.
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What were Stresemann's foreign policy aims as foreign minister?
1. He hoped to revise the Versailles settlement 2. He saw that co-operation with Britain and France seemed to be in Germany's best short-term interests.
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What were the 1925 Locarno Treaties?
The Locarno pact was signed in December 1925, it included: 1. Germany, France and Belgium agreed to respect their existing frontiers 2. Germany, Poland and Czechoslovakia agreed to settle future disputes peacefully.
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What signs of peaceful co-operation were there during Weimar's golden age?
1. Germany was admitted to the League of Nations in 1926 2. In 1927 the Allies agreed to reduce their Rhineland occupation forces by 10K men 3. In 1928 Germany subscribed to the Kellog-Briand pact outlawing 'war as an instrument of foreign policy'
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What was the Treaty of Berlin of 1926?
The Treaty of Berlin was an agreement that reaffirmed the Treaty of Rapallo and guarenteed mutual neutrality in the event of an attack on either country.
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How successful was Stresemann?
Stresemann was successful, however it may have been over emphasised because: 1. Circumstances worked strongly in his favour, including Britain and France's willingness to cooperate 2. By 1929 Stresemann identified the slow pace of revision in the ToV
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What was the Great Depression of 1929?
Disaster struck the New York stock exchange on Wall Street, the value of shares collapsed and many people were ruined. Americans pulled investments from Germany,
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How did the Great Depression of 1929 affect Germany?
1, Industrial production fell by over 40% 2. 50K business bankrupted 3. By 1932 those unemployed totalled more than those in full time work 4. Wage cuts
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What was the political impact of the Great Depression of 1929?
1. It discredited the Weimar Republic 2. With Stresmann's death in 1929, there was no democratic politician of his calibre to replace him 3. Support for polar parties increased
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What happened in the 1930s election?
As a result of the desperation in Germany, people turned to extreme parties: 1. The communists (KPD) won 77 seats 2. The Nazis did even better winning 107 seats
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Who was Chancellor Bruning?
1. Chancellor from 1930-32 2.He was dependent on Hindenburg using Article 48 with no Reichstag majority 3. Bruning can be seen as a semi-dictator as a result
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How was Bruning removed as Chancellor in 1932?
General von Schleicher, who had influence over Hindenburg convinced Hindenburg to dismiss Bruning after losing faith in him in 1932. He was then replaced by Franz von Papen.
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Who was Hitler?
Hitler was a failed Austrian artist, a soldier in WW1 with an Iron Cross for bravery. He then joined the Nazi party, becoming party leader in 1921.
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What was Hitler's ideology?
1. Anti-semetic 2. Traditional 3. Social darwinist 4. Hated communists
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What percent of the vote did the Nazi party get in the 1928 election?
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When did the Nazi's begin to make considerable breakthroughs in the elections?
In late 1928 a Nazi surge began as the party won support from distressed farmers in north Germany. By 199 the Nazi's were winning 10-20% of the vote in local elections across northern Germany. Increasing unemployment also raised popularity.
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What happened in the 1932 elections?
In March 1932 Hitler challenged Hindenburg for the presidency, although Hitler lost, he won 37% of the vote. In May 1932 von Papen became chancellor, he tried to reach agreement with the Nazi's which failed resulting in new elections.
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Why did so many Germans vote for the Nazi party in 1932 election?
1. Desperation caused polar support 2. They were anti-Marxist 3. They stressed traditional values 4. Anti-semetism
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Which Germans voted for the Nazi party in the 1932 election?
1. The lower middle class often voted for the Nazis, e.g. teachers and office workers 2. Large numbers of workers voted for Hitler 3. Catholics voted for Hitler (Traditional)
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How effective was Nazi propaganda?
Joseph Goebbles, used a host of techniques such as well-coordinated press campaigns targeting specific groups, sending party speakers into rural districts and Nazi rallies. Overall Nazi propaganda was very successful.
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Why did the Communists also carry an appeal in the 1932 election?
As 6 million workers were unemployed, there was also a natural lead towards the KPD after 1929, KPD membership grew from 100K in 1929 to 400K in 1932
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Which other political parties remained relatively strong in the 1932 elections?
1. The Centre party retained its Catholic support 2. The Communist KDP 3. The SPD retained the support of wokers 4. The nationalist DNVP still won the support of its traditional voters
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How did the SPD and the KPD fail in 1932?
Had the SPD and KDP combined they would have been almost as strong as the Nazi's in 1932, however this didn't happen as 1. The two parties had long hated each other 2. The KPD believed in revolution, the SPD did not
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What was Hitler's overall situation in the autumn of 1932?
His charismatic authority ensured that the different groups within the party remained neutral. However he was not totally successful as he failed to win the confidence of Hindenburg
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How did the Nazi's perform in the November 1932 elections?
After a decisive vote of no confidence in the Reichstag, von Papen called for new elections. The party was short of funds, these elections were a major blow for Hitler, the vote slipped to 33%
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Why did the conservative elite support the Nazis after the November 1932 elections?
1. They feared if the Nazi bubble burst, the Communists might seize power 2. Hitler might attempt an armed putsch, which could lead to a disastrous civil war.
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How did the actions of General Schleicher affect the Nazi party in December 1932?
1. In December 1932 General Schleicher told Hindenburg the army no longer had confidence in von Papen, upon which Hindenburg reluctantly dismissed von Papen. Schleicher, assuring the president that he could win Nazi support and thus command a
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How did the actions of General Schleicher affect the Nazi party in December 1932? (2)
majority in the Reichstag, was now appointed chancellor. Hitler was not prepared to back Schleicher, and this caused Strasser's dismissal from the Nazi party.
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How did the actions of Von Papen affect the Nazi party in 1933?
1. Angry with his dismissal, in early January 1933 von Papen began negotiations with Hitler and Hugenberg, the Nationalist Part leader. They shared many views such as nationalism, anti-communism and hatred of Weimar.
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What were The Lippe elections of mid-January 1933?
In mid-January 1933 the Nazis threw everything into elections in the small state of Lippe to show they were still a major force. The strategy worked winning 39% of the vote, Hitler could boast that his party were back on the road. On 28th January
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What were The Lippe elections of mid-January 1933? (2)
Schleicher resigned as he had virtually no support in the Reichstag and lacked the support of Hindenburg.
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When and how did Hitler become chancellor?
Pressured by von Papen, his son Oscar Hindenburg and his state secretary, Hindenburg agreed to accept Hitler as chancellor, who could control a majority in the Reichstag. Von Papen, who would become vice-chancellor was convinced he could control Hitl
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What were the Nazi party's advantages in March 1933?
1. The alliance with the DNVP ensured that the party was well funded, meaning Goebbles could mount an impressive election campaign 2. Goering, the new interior minster of Prussia, recruited 50,000 SA as special police.
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How did the Nazi party benefit from the Reichstag fire of February 1933
1. Hindenburg was convinced the KPD were involved and issued a decree suspending freedom of press, speech and association 2. KPD and SPD leaders arrested 3
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What percent of the vote did the Nazi's get in the March 1933 elections?
43.9%, with the DNVP winning just 8%
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What was the Enabling Act?
Now controlling a majority in the Reichstag, Hitler passed the Enabling Act in late march 1933, this allowed him to pass laws without the Reichstag's consent essentially making Hitler a dictator.
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Why did the Nazi's appeal to the German people?
1. Hitler's charismatic leadership 2. Nazi ideology 3. Skilled propaganda
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


What did Kaiser Wilhelm II do in response to this?


On October 1 1918 he asked Prince von Baden, a moderate conservative to form a government. This government included some SPD members.

Card 3


What happened on the 3rd October 1918?


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


What constitutional reforms did Max's government introduce to Germany


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


Why did pressure for Kaiser Wilhelm II begin to increase throughout 1918?


Preview of the front of card 5
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