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The German Revolution ppt

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The German
Revolution
1918-1919
THE BIRTH OF THE WEIMAR REPUBLIC
PART 1:
�Revolution from Above’
 By late September 1918, after four years of bloody war,
Germany faced military defeat – WHY?
FAILURE OF
FINAL
OFFENSIVE
MARCH 1918
FAILURE
OF RAPID
VICTORY
REASONS FOR FAILURE
LIMITATIONS
OF WAR
ECONOMY
STALEMATE
STRENGTHS OF ALLIES
Learning Intention: To gain an understanding of
how the war affected the living and working
conditions of the people?

In 1914 the vast majority of Germans supported the war and there
were no signs of the country’s morale and unity breaking down
until the winter months of early 1917. From then on however
social discontent grew markedly because of:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
Food and Fuel shortages
Civilian deaths
Infant mortality
The Spanish flu
Inflation
Casualties
Considerable anger was expressed against the so-called �sharks of
industry’ who made vast profits from the war. Resentment grew in the
minds of many of the middle classes as they felt their social status had
been lowered as their income declined. Above all, opposition began to
grow against the political leaders, who had urged total war. Faced with a
worsening situation Generals Ludendorff and Hindenburg recognised the
seriousness of Germany’s problems and decided to seek peace with the
allies.
The Creation of a Democracy

Faced with the threat of invasion and defeat Ludendorff persuaded the Kaiser,
Wilhelm II, to transform the Second Reich into a parliamentary democracy by handing
over power to a civilian government that had the support of the Reichstag. Germany
was to be transformed from
AUTOCRACY
CONSTITUTIONAL MONARCHY
LUDENDORFF’S MOTIVES
He hoped the new
Civilian government
Would be able to get
Better peace terms
He hoped the new
civilian government
would be blamed for
Germany’s defeat
As it would
Have to end the war.
THUS WAS BORN THE STAB IN THE BACK MYTH
THE BIRTH OF THE WEIMAR REPUBLIC
PART II
From monarchy to democratic republic in six
weeks!
пЃ¶In October 1918 a new government based on the Reichstag
was formed. This was the revolution from above, as this great
change was initiated by the ruling class itself.
The new gov’t under Prince Max of Baden passed some
reforms, but these were not sufficient in these turbulent days.
пЃ¶Economic discontent and war weariness caused growing
popular unrest. The German people had been promised, and
expected, a great victory.
пЃ¶ When it was clear the war was lost Germany erupted in a
wave of unrest, this is often described as the Revolution from
Below.
Revolution from Below
KEY DATES
NOV 2nd –
THE KIEL MUTINY
NOV 9th –
ABDICATION OF KAISER
NOV 11th –
ARMISTICE SIGNED
NOV 9th –
GERMANY DECLARED
A REPUBLIC
JAN 1919 –
SPARTICIST UPRISING
FEB 6th –
NEW CONSTITUTION
DRAWN UP IN
WEIMAR
Summary Diagram: The Collapse of
Imperial Germany
Germany’s Military defeat
Socio-economic effects
Reasons for:
Failure of rapid recovery
Stalemate
Strength of Allies
Limitations of German War
economy
Failure of the final offensive,
March 1918
October Reform
The motives of Ludendorff
The constitutional changes
�A revolution from above’?
Including:
•Food and fuel
shortages
•Civilian deaths
•Infant mortality
•Influenza
•Inflation
•Causalities
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