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Describe the Foundation of the Weimar Constitution.

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Introduction

Describe the Foundation of the Weimar Constitution On the 11th of November 1918, at 11 o'clock the signing of an armistice brought an end to a world war that had raged for 4 years. Defeated, Germany was in a state of economic and social disaster. France and some of their allies were keen to blame Germany for the war and quickly sort to claim compensation for their losses. The German people were bitter of their defeat and many felt it was problems and lack of support at home that had lost them the battle rather than their soldiers on the front. They looked for someone to blame and found it in their 'unpatriotic' politicians. Unrest began to spread through Germany as the "stab in the back" theory developed. The resentment and bitterness that remained in the aftermath of war meant that Germany underwent a revolution, loosing the Kaiserreich and instead looked towards a new political development; the Weimar Republic. ...read more.

Middle

The president was also allowed to suspend either entirely or partially the main laws laid down in articles 114, 115, 117, 118, 123, 124 and 153. The ministers of the republic were chosen by election from representatives to form a government based on party strength. Each term of office was to last for 4 years and was decided by the electorate. Germany became one of the first countries to give women the vote as all men and women over 20 were eligible to vote. For every 60,000 votes, parties secured one representative, with the country being divided into 35 large electoral areas. The German people were, in theory, given more control over their government. If one tenth of the population expressed a certain proposal and sent it to the Reichstag, and it was rejected, than a national referendum would be the decider. It was also declared that every German citizen had the right to work and they would be found a job by the state if they were unable to do so. ...read more.

Conclusion

Many even disagreed with the basic political principles on which Weimar was built. The new republic also brought with it deep religious and ethnic divisions. The majority of the country was still protestant, however there was also a strong Catholic population in West and South Germany. Catholic views were declared firmly through their own party, Catholic Centre Party, whilst the Polish and Danish population also developed political groups. However, it was mainly economic and political divisions that had begun to grow after 1914. Consequently by the end of the war, it was extremely difficult to try and built a new political regime as there was so much political unrest at home. To compensate for this, the new regime tried to include as many balanced and mixed political ideas, compensating for much and often being almost contradictory. Despite this, the Weimar constitution lasted a surprisingly long time. It over came the Kapp putsch of 1920 where Army officers attempted a coup, the great inflation and also the French occupation of the Ruhr in 1923. Eleanor Richens 19th October 2004 ...read more.

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