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Was the Weimar Republic Doomed to Fail?

In: Historical Events

Submitted By lulucubbage
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To what extent was the Weimar Republic doomed to fail? To answer, one must recognize the demands of the question. Doomed, meaning ill-fated, is subjective and can be argued by analyzing historical evidence and historiographical interpretations. To fail means that it did not succeed in what it intended to do, which in this case, would be to transform Germany’s government into a peaceful democracy. Through two distinct historiographical lenses, one can determine whether the collapse of the Weimar Republic (1919 to 1933) was genuinely inevitable. Historical View #1 proposes that Hitler was a product of Germany’s authoritarian culture, and the Germans failed to develop a democratic tradition because they preferred a stronger state led by a powerful individual. Historical View #5 suggests that German support of Nazism was an emotional response to the crisis-state; Germans were disoriented with the economic crisis, and similar to View #1, sought firmer leadership. The Treaty of Versailles doomed the Weimar Republic because the German administration was unable to fulfill the treaty’s unrealistic demands for reparations, which ruined their domestic economy and fostered a strong authoritative leadership that would defend Germany against the terms and impoverishing effects of the ill-advised treaty.
The Treaty of Versailles was intended to guarantee the Allies (and neighboring countries) peace and safety; however, the Allies neglected to recognize that the harsh demands of reparations would drive Germany into the hands of a dictator. Virtually the whole nation repudiated the Treaty of Versailles; it was introduced to promote peace, but instead stripped Germany of her self-determination and potential prosperity, leading to a domestic rebuke of its onerous terms. Additionally, President Wilson’s following Fourteen Points were also considered to deny millions of citizens their…...

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