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Weimar: The Golden Years
Germany - western, tolerant
    and democratic?
Main Points
 German apparent ‘stabilisation’ 1924-29
 Main Foreign Policy developments
 Effects on German social structures and
  the country’s place in the world
 How far was this period a ‘golden age’?
             1923

 Germany    in financial chaos
 Inflation running out of
  control
 The French occupying the
  Ruhr
                                         1923
                         Enter Gustav Stresemann
                                          • Leader of the conservative
                                          DVP
                                          • 13. August: Reichskanzler of
                                                 coalition
                                             •2. November: coalition
                                             breaks down
                                             •Becomes Außenminister-
Source:
                                             until his death in 1929
http://www.dhm.de/
lemo/html/biografie
n/StresemannGust
av/index.html
Gustav Stresemann
 major contribution to stabilisation
 Negotiated the Dawes-Plan (1924)
   Helped secure US loans for
    reparations
   Aided German economic restructuring

   Aided normalisation of relations with
    France
   BUT also US economic expansion
                    1925
   French leave the Ruhr
   Locarno-Verträge signed
      Non-aggression pact between Germany,
       Belgium, Britain, France, Italy
      Pledge to recognise German, French and
       Belgium Frontiers
      Further agreements signed with Poland
       and Czechoslovakia
Effects of Locarno
 Suggested that Germany was more
  Western than Eastern-oriented.
    The Left not happy.

 Confirmed acceptance of Versailles and
  kept Germany militarily weak
    The Right not happy
Effects of Locarno
   BUT also signalled Germany’s re-entry
    into the international community of
    nations.

   1926 Germany enters the League of
    Nations
                   1926
   Stresemann signs Berliner Vertrag.
     reassure domestic audience

     Non-aggression pact with USSR

     Reposition of Germany at centre of
      Europe
     Secret agreement on military training
                   1929
   July Young-Plan agreed

     Reduced reparations
     Speeded up normalization

     Future looking good for the nation
The Golden years?
   Blossoming of philosophy and culture
     The Frankfurt School (Benjamin,
      Adorno, Marcuse)

       Modernism flourishes (literature eg:
        Alfred Döblin, Bertolt Brecht, the
        Manns. Visual arts eg:Otto Dix, Käthe
        Kollwitz)
The Golden years?
 Technological advances
 Birth of new media (radio film)


   German Cinema competes with
    Hollywood
     Expressionism
           The Golden years?


                               Click here for film clip




Source
         http://waynesw
         eb.ualr.edu/Ex
         pressionism/E
         xpressionisticF
         ilm.htm
The Golden years?

 Democratisation
 Female emancipation
The Golden years?
 BUT still very conservative tendencies
   Education

   Women’s position in society

   Lack of consensus of the value of
    democracy
   Stresemann’s readiness to
    compromise contentious
 Economic ‘stability’ very fragile
The Beginning of the End?

 3 October 1929: Stresemann
 dies
 25 October: The Wall Street
 Crash
 The cracks in Weimar
 democracy become evermore
 pronounced…

				
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