By Martin Kitchen

This attractive textbook offers a extensive survey of recent German historical past from 1800-2000, and situates Germany’s fragmented prior inside of its complete context. Kitchen:

  • Provides readers a protracted view of German background, letting them see continuities and alterations
  • Covers the unification of Germany, the German Empire, the Weimar Republic, the 3rd Reich, the Federal Republic, the cave in of Communism, and the re-unification
  • Examines cultural background in addition to political and fiscal historical past
  • Includes insurance of nearby background instead of targeting the dominant function of Prussia

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Extra resources for A History of Modern Germany 1800 - 2000

Sample text

The French Revolution had swept aside the old aristocratic society based on the estates, and replaced it with the bourgeois concepts of freedom and equality. These were notions fraught with contradictions, as critics never tired of pointing out, but there was a general recognition that a state could only survive if the people identified with it to some degree, if its subjects became citizens, if the gulf between the state and society were bridged. These were revolutionary ideas, as conservative reformers like Hardenberg knew full well.

Even the chief of police, Justus Gruner, offered his services to the tsar. Frederick William 14 GERMANY UNDER NAPOLEON III no longer enjoyed the loyalty of many of his most prominent officials, who now saw themselves as serving the nation and the people rather than the monarch. Such was the force of revolutionary ideas that they affected even those who were the most ardent opponents of its Bonapartist manifestation. The Age of Reform Although outwardly Prussia seemed weak and feeble, and its government aimless, the period from 1806 to 1811 was one of astonishing and rapid reform.

The Prussian reform movement was inspired by the desire to bridge the gap between the state and society, and to involve the citizens directly or indirectly in the affairs of state. Southern German étatisme, although determined to overcome the outmoded rights of the estates and to modernize society, was deeply suspicious of the dangerous potential of popular sovereignty. The consequences of these differences were somewhat surprising. The tradition of the reforming state lived on in southern Germany and provided a congenial atmosphere for the liberal bourgeoisie.

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