“Germany experienced a period of political calm, economic development and social progress in the mid 1920s.” How far do you agree with this judgement? The Stresemann years of 1924-29 have often been portrayed as the “golden years” of Weimar Germany; however this idea has been challenged my many historians. During this period there was an element of political calm but it was mainly typified by political inaction and a failure of coalition governments to agree on any important issues. Economic development did occur but was minimal, and the period was one of slow economic growth and “relative stagnation”. Similarly, there were several signs of social progress and cultural development, but the years were significantly characterised by cultural polarisation.
How ‘golden’ were the golden years of Weimar in the period 1924-1929? The Weimar Republic was a state born out of crisis after Germany had been defeated in World War I and Kaiser Wilhelm II had been forced to abdicate. While the years of Weimar to seem ‘golden’ in comparison with preceding years, as there were no putsches and it was relatively stable politically it could be argued that on a larger scale there were still fundamental flaws within the Weimar regime, shown through the vast amounts of unstable coalitions, thus indicating that the years of Weimar were not as golden as originally perceived. A factor which seems to suggest that the golden years of the Weimar republic in the period 1924-1929 were ‘golden’ is the fact that economic stability was returned to Germany, mostly through the actions of the foreign minister, Stresemann. Stresemann ended the hyperinflation crisis of 1923 by introducing a new currency, the Rentenmark, which was backed by US loans to replace the now worthless mark.
In agreement with these views, source 5 similarly points out that the crisis “did not destroy the political balance at home”. These idea can be backed up by the fact that the Conservatives won the following election in 1959, whilst being lead by Eden’s replacement, Harold Macmillan in 1957; during this time the conservatives were far more affluent and popular than the labour party. Moreover, evidence for lack of political effect grows, as source 5 argues that Eden stepped down as Prime minister “as a result of ill health” rather that being removed from power due to the outcome of Suez. Arguments for his ill health can be supported as Eden lived on a mixture of pills to control his pain as he had never properly recovered from an operation in 1953, and following doctor’s advice to rest, went on holiday in Jamaica. Furthermore, with the help of R.A Butler and Heath, Macmillan quickly took control of the party and began the recovery process for the problems caused by Suez.
Historian use the failure of the putsch to prove Nazi party as weak before 1929. This was the infamous Munich Putsch which took place on 24th February 1924. Hitler had over grossly estimated the level of public support for the putsch despite issues faced by the Weimar republic at the time, clearly the German people were in desperate need for a new stable government and leader, however when the Nazi party presented itself to the people it did not receive much followers which questions did the German people see the Nazis weak. The putsch failed, mainly due to the lack of planning. Without taking into account of the failure of the Putsch, if the Nazis failed to organise the Putsch to begin with clearly
Many would refer to this as relative stabilisation but not completely. Politically Germany suffered as the parties that were supposed to be protecting the interests of the German people were acting more like interest groups, therefore when a coalition government was elected they struggled to work together resulting in the problems that needed to be addressed never came to a conclusion, however the interests of the ‘bourgeois’ parties of the DNVP, BVP and DVP were divergent. Within the coalitions, however, some important social legislation was passed. Within the political structure the vote had always varied but at this time the left were making important gains with the SPD increasing its share of seats by 22 to 153 and the KPD showing a rise of 9 seats to 54, this in turn meant that the parties of the centre and right saw their votes drop, which escalated the amount of splinter parties. The political polarization that was a developing feature of the period meant that forming a stable majority government had become near impossible, therefore questioning the stability of the political aspects of Germany.
However, in order to solve this problem once and for all, Hans Luther took decisive action and replaced the mark with the rentenmark, a new currency. Since this currency was not produced on the scale of its predecessor - supply was restricted to 3.2 billion rentenmarks - the value held much better and therefore the inflation rate was significantly curbed. As a result, economic stability was achieved for the first time in 18 months in Germany, for which Luther and Schact, not Stresemann was hugely responsible. Without a solution to the hyperinflation crisis, Germany could have
Question: To what extent can the period between 1924-1930 be classified as the golden years of Weimar Germany? The period between 1924-1930 marked the resurgence of Germany as a cultural and political power in Europe. Germany began to recover from its crushing defeat in the war thanks to the resolution of a host of issues that were plaguing its very foundation, namely the partisan divide of its politics, the disastrous hyper inflation, and its isolated status as a state. In contrast to the previous five years, it enjoyed relative prosperity, social advancement, and stable international relations. It is for these reasons that this essay will argue that the period between 1924-1930 in Weimar Germany can be appropriately termed as the Golden Years.
Hitler never had more than 37 percent of the popular vote in the honest elections that occurred before he became Chancellor. And the opposition among the 63 percent against him was generally quite strong. Hitler therefore would have never seen the light of day had the German Republic been truly democratic. Unfortunately, its otherwise sound constitution contained a few fatal flaws. The German leaders also had a weak devotion to democracy, and some were actively plotting to overthrow it.
All payments went towards the king, this would've also made the Earls not feel powerful enough, especially Harold Godwin who was seen as the most powerful man in England, but theoretically he wasn’t. However the Economy was well governed because the trade increased, which encouraged both the growth of towns and foreign contacts, this demonstrates that England were still involved in trade, which was good for the economy. However the economy was not very well developed especially compared to the Byzantine Empire and Muslim world. Those economies were massive, especially when compared to England’s. Overall I believe that the economy for pre-Conquest England as well- governed to an extent as the King did have large control, he did control this well, but he may have been seen as too powerful where the government is concerned.
Anti – democratic figures had seen the Nazi party as potential allies to provide popular support for an authoritarian regime. From this we can learn that the increase of support in which the Nazi party had gained, Hitler had also gained too. However the Nazi party were only ever capable of receiving 37% of the vote, this implicates that despite the increase in popularity, the level of support was not as significant as Hitler had hoped and therefore he could not had been elected by popular support alone. On the one hand, it must not be diminished that the Nazi party created a new outlook for most Germans. They were beginning to doubt that Germany had any pride left.