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IB History Paper 2 - Dictators

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Sam Head

on 10 March 2013

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Transcript of IB History Paper 2 - Dictators

IB History Paper 2 - Dictators by Sam Head 13R2 Key areas to consider, concise evidence, analysis and historiography Long term causes, the nature of opposition and the nature of the dictators Total Wars Case Studies to consider: Hitler - Germany
Mussolini - Italy
Stalin - Russia
Mao - China
Franco - Spain Hitler Long Term Context Economic Causes: 1918 onward: Germany is blamed for WWI and subjected to the terms of the Versailles Paris Peace Treaty; Germany is commanded to pay £22 Billion in annual installments. 1922 Hyperinflation: War torn German Economy, which is strained by the extra issue of the Versailles reparations - starts to Hyper-inflate. Gustav Stresemann's only response is to create a new temporary currency the Rentenmark, and then replaced in the longterm by a Gold standard Reichmark. 1929-30: Great Depression, the economic stability of the late 20's is wrecked by the fallout from the Wall Street Crash, and Germany is plunged back into economic crisis. Political Causes: Complex Political History: Since unification in 1871, nationalism and right of centre politics have had a stronghold in German politics. With Liberalism in the backseat. Backed by the Kaiser and Junker Aristocracy, post WWI Germans are not used to liberal democracy. Abdication of the Kaiser: With the abdication in 1918 running to Holland. Germany was thrown into political chaos, with a melting pot of socialism, liberalism, conservativism, anarchism and monarchism. "Stab in the back theory": Ebert and the democrats who signed the 11/11/1918 Armistice, many veterans and right wing politicians saw this as a stab in the back to conservative aristocratic Kaiser run pre 1918 Germany. Weakness in Weimar Constitution: Multiple parties struggle to agree on policy, leading to political stagnation, only Stresemann controls the Reichstag for a long period of time. Social Causes: Social revolution: The defeat of Germany in WWI and the subsequent formation of a democratic republic led to the freeing of society which embraced one of the most forwarding thinking liberal social structures in the world. "International Pariah": the German people were laboured with the same label as the war mongerers of WWI, this turned in on Germany with the Veterans of the war forming 'Freikorps' and the working classes adopting the socialist cause, including the diehard 'Spartacists.' These two factions clashed in 1920 with the government only maintaining control by playing one group of aagainst the other. The effect of Bismarckian 'Kulturkampf': Germany is a socially diverse society, which is held together by the unification geographically. Social divides still exist and these are never truly addressed. Nature of the Opposition *Opposition to the Nazis Party were seperated into divisions.
*Socialists were members of two political groups within the Reichstag; USPD and the more extreme KPD. In 1920 less than 20% of German people voted for them. After the put down of the 'Spartacist' rising which the USPD did not support, the Socialists were unable to achieve a great deal. After the Wall Street Crash their votes increased, to no avail.
*Democratic parties took 75% of the Votes in 1920. The Centre Party represented Catholicism, SPD was the other major party. *Article 48 of the German Weimar Constitution allowed for Marshal Law in the event of a 'crisis' a dangerous clause.
*The President was elected by the German Electorate, the president chooses the Chancellor who must have the support of 2/3s of the Reichstag.
*When the Reichstag is split and the Chancellor cannot have its support, the President has to use emergency powers to pass legislation via the Chancellor, there is the weakness in the Weimar constitution.
*Political infighting: Bruning and Müller of the two biggest democratic parties 'Z' and 'SPD,' neither can agree with the other.
*Once Papen and Von Schleicher both failed to secure the support of the Reichstage, election results forced Hindenburg the president to choose Hitler as Chancellor of a mixed Nazi/ Non Nazi cabinet. Nature of Hitler and the Nazi Party. *The German people are searching for a strong unified party in times of crisis. Which explains why Socialism garnered support in 1918-21 and post the Great Depression. The Nazi party offered a unifying quality. *The Nazi ideology was centered on three themes, Strength, Unity and Purity. *Semitic vs Aryan and the inspiration of Hitler's Mein Kampf. Hitler capitalised on the need for a 'Scapegoat' and targeted Jews and Socialists. The German people needed someone to blame for the chaos. *The failed Beer Hall Putsch of '22 left the Nazi party to change tactic, and attempt to gain power by legal means. *Capitalising on the heroics of the 1918 German 'Sturmtrouper,' and the Nietzschen 'Superman' - The Nazis offered an alternative to the 'failing' democracy.
*Nazis ideology capitalises on the strife of German society and offers an escape. So Why did Hitler come to power? A.J.P Taylor - Hitler was an opportunist, there was no German 'Sonderweg' and the terms of the Versaille Treaty added to the likelihood of Hitler coming to power, as did the failure of Socialism. H.T. Roper - German 'Sonderweg Thesis' when Germany was unified it upset the balance of Europe, and Hitler's rise was a result of that.
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