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The Great Depression
Transcript of The Great Depression
Ren Ming Liu and Zhen Dong
The Great Depression
unemployment rose sharply beginning in late 1929, and by early 1932 it had reached 6 million workers, or 25 per cent of the work force
When the stock market crashed, a lot of countries received those same effects, however the German economy was extremely vulnerable to the Great Depression due to the fact that it was built mainly from America's loans and therefore suffered particularly severe effects.
When banks folded, the life savings of many Germans were instantly wiped out making them live on their salaries. When the production of industries in Germany decreased, the unemployment rate was devastating. Between the years 1929-30, more than 3 million Germans were unemployed, that's 14% of the German population. By 1932, 5 million Germans became unemployed. As well as this, inflation affected Germany in such a way that you would've needed a wheelbarrow full of notes just to buy groceries.
Apart from the Great Depression, the 1920s were considered a boom decade
for American companies because of the skyrocketing sales and millions of dollars of profit. Shareholders were also benefiting from the increase in share prices and so thousands of Americans rushed to purchase shares, many using their life savings or even borrowed money. However, the dramatic increases in profits and share prices could not be sustained forever and in 1928, there was over-production in many industries which led to decrease in sales and falling profits.
The stock market crashed on the 24th of October 1929, this sparked a rush to sell shares. Share prices plummeted as everyone was desperate to sell their shares. Since everyone was losing money, there was a large decrease in spending which meant industries were required to produce less which ultimately resulted in unemployment.
As well as this, banks folded due to the fact people couldn't pay back loans and therefore the banks struggled to provide money to their depositors.
The Weimar Republic had its last election in March 1933 with the Nazis receiving 44 per cent of the vote. Hitler had a secure legislative majority and used this to permit the Enabling Act, permitting the government to make laws without parliament. Communists were arrested and later, the parties were banned, ending the Weimar republic.
As mentioned earlier, Germany's political system was put under a lot of pressure and reduced to shambles due to the Great Depression.
The next few slides will look into the Nazi Party and what happened during Hitler's reign on Germany.
The Nazi Party was a far right wing political party. It strongly supported nationalism and were an anti - communist group. As World War I had just ended, Germany was in a disaster as they had to pay reparations - payments intended to cover damage or injury inflicted during war. Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party began using propaganda to encourage support of the anti-communist group. They appealed to the Germans sense of patriotism and eventually were voted into power.
Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party then went on and to establish a totalitarian regime called the Third Reich. They proclaimed that Germany should be 'pure' and that the Jews and other 'lesser' groups were the cause of World War I and that they should be exterminated. This lead to two of the most horrible events in history - the Holocaust and the start of World War II.
The Holocaust was the genocide of six million Jews during this new devastating war. The people of Germany sought out the Jews and others, like the disabled, and sent them off to isolated concentration camps. But this was just a farce as people were murdered once they had been sent there.
The Weimar Republic was Germany’s first democracy.
During the Stock Market crash, many Germans were forced into bankruptcy and many lost their jobs due to the payment the Germans owed to the United States for their loans to the Dawes plan in 1924 and the Young Plan in 1929.
The Nazi Party
The Nazi party’s rise to leadership began when a businessman, Hugenburg, financed them. The Nazis gained seats, up to 143 in parliament on the 1930 election and to 230 in the 1932 election. Also in 1932, Hitler, the leader of the Nazis, challenged Field Marshal von Hindenburg for presidency. He lost, acquiring 13.4 million votes while Hindenburg received 19.36 million votes. The Nazi party lost seats, dipping to 198, but was still much ahead of the second largest party, 121 seats owned by Social Democrats.
Nazi Party Succeeds Against Weimar
Hindenburg chose his own chancellor, Franz von Papen. Von Papen had no support, failing his leadership vote 513 to 32. Hitler demanded to be made chancellor again, but was refused. The army informed Hindenburg, through General Scheicher that they did not support von Papen so Hindenburg appointed the general as chancellor, who had no political experience. He received no support and was dismissed. Hitler became the only person with credibility and was sworn in as chancellor in Hindenburg’s chamber.
World War II was a global war which lasted from 1939 to 1945. It involved many nations and eventually two military powers were formed- the Allies and the Axis. As Adolf Hitler thirsted for more power, he broke the Treaty of Versailles and attacked Poland. Once again, Britain and France declared war on Germany and thus began the Second World War
The Great Depression had a huge impact to Germany and its political system. it caused the falling out of the Weimar Republic and the rise of the Nazi Party which inevitably led to WWII.
The Stock Market Crash
Effects on Germany
Thanks for watching and listening! ;)