Weimar Republic Weimar Republic -- Republic Press First World War
Trinity College Dublin
The fall of Weimar democracy in 1933 has evoked massive interest among historians and the general public and numerous attempts have been made to explain Hitler's rise to power. In this context, many historians have explained the rhetorical exploitation of the war as a significant factor in right-wing ideology during the Weimar Republic. Vanessa Ther's thesis aims to address the fact that in this narrative, the republican attempts to deal with the legacy of the First World War have been largely neglected. The research for this project encompasses a broad range of republican journals and newspapers as well as a large number of political leaflets and pamphlets. On the basis of this source material it could be established that the specifically republican narrative of the war did not reflect an inability to exploit the issue but distinctly attempted to seize the population's war weariness in order to rally political support for the republic. Right-wing attacks on the legitimacy and the achievements of the republic and republican inter-party rivalries, however, led to inconsistencies and misjudgements in the narrative of revolution, which made the republic more vulnerable. It can furthermore be suggested that the republican propaganda was also weakened by the inability to define a rhetoric of dissent that diverged from the war propaganda which had been appropriated from the right wing.
Exhibited at the second Glucksman Memorial Symposium on June 13th 2007
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