Depth study A: Germany, 1918-1945

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Assignment 1

 Depth Study A:                    Germany, 1918-1945

  1. Choose any one reason from the list and explain how it contributed to Hitler's rise to power.

The depression had its greatest impact on Germany. By 1932 one out of three Germans was unemployed and the result was a massive discontent between the German population. The democratic government was already in trouble before the depression: many right and left-sided politicians had been unhappy for years for the way the democratic government was working. The depression added a new sense of crisis to the Weimar government, which gave total power to the president, Paul Von Hindenburg.

This depression was a big piece of luck for the National Socialists (Nazis) and especially for Hitler. Without the depression Hitler would have never come to power. Before the depression, the Nazi party was a very small party (only had 12 seats in parliament) but overnight the number of followers increased during the depression and the party grew bigger. Hitler achieved his aims as people lost faith in the democratic government because this wasn’t the first problem it came up, and so people (especially the working class) turned to the parties that involved a change (the Nazi party and the communist party).

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As unemployment rose in Germany, Hitler used it to offer people a better future and, especially, jobs. He promised a change and a solution for the economical crisis. Hitler’s appeal was based on the problems of the depression: most of his supporters were impressed by the way his propaganda, run by Goebbels, called for ‘Work, Freedom and Bread’. Unemployment strengthened all the hostility against the Treaty of Versailles and the Weimar republic, in general, that had been experienced by the Germans since 1919.

In conclusion, the evidence shows that without the depression Hitler would not have rose to power. He ...

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