Category Archives: Politics

Democracy after World War I

7ab0d62fb4The volume Normalität und Fragilität: Demokratie nach dem Ersten Weltkrieg, edited by Adam Tooze and Tim B. Müler, looks at the changes of Western democracy after 1918. During the interwar years, the authors argue, democracy “became normal”, but at the same time was characterized by a fundamental fragility: “Modern democracy is a recent invention. It was the new political phenomenon, dynamic and characteristic of the era that followed the end of World War I. In these decades, democracy became normal, a comprehensive form of governance and daily life. The notion that it might be replaced with some other model seemed unthinkable. This development occurred simultaneously in a various societies worldwide, especially in Europe. Continue reading


Journal Review: German History 4/2014


In the December issue of German History, Heidi Tworek writes about the cooperation between German journalists and diplomats to raise Germany’s international profile after WWI: ‘From August 2013, a new, controversial ancillary copyright law (Leistungsschutzrecht) permitted German publishers to charge online news aggregator, such as Google for displaying article snippets. Implementation remains contested, but this is not the first time that new technology has prompted Germans to seek intellectual property rights in news. In August 1927, a German delegation successfully pushed through its compromise resolution on the legal protection of news during a Conference of Press Experts at the League of Nations. Continue reading

Conference: European Democracies after WWI

The conference Nach dem „Großen Krieg“. Vom Triumph zum Desaster der Demokratie 1918/19 – 1939 at the Hannah Arendt Institute in Dresden covered the development of European democracies after WWI– and their rapid disintegration from the end of the 1920s – in a comparative perspective. A conference report has just been published on H-Soz-Kult (in German).

PhD grants for research on leftist politics in Weimar

rosa_luxemburg125_enThe Rosa Luxemburg Foundation is funding PhD research on “the history of leftist politics in Germany beyond Social Democracy and Party Communism“. Eligible projects include:


  • Syndicalism, soviet communism and Trotzkyism in interwar Germany
  • Proletarian women’s movements and working-class youth movements in interwar Germany


Weimar’s Republican War Veterans

9781107028890Benjamin Ziemann’s new study Contested Commemorations. Republican War Veterans and Weimar Political Culture adds to the growing literature on the strength of republican cultures of commemoration in Weimar that challenge the traditional view of the dominance of nationalist and anti-democratic political culture: ‘This innovative study of remembrance in Weimar Germany analyses how experiences and memories of the Great War were transformed along political lines after 1918. Continue reading

CfP: Hidden Continuities: From Interwar to Postwar Integration in Europe

Hidden Continuities:

From Interwar to Postwar Forms of Cooperation and Integration in Europe

23-25 october 2014, Free University Berlin

Deadline: 5 March 2014

Historical research on European integration often treats 1945 as a ‘Zero Hour’, heralding a new period in history. This conference, in contrast, zooms in on the various connections between practices and proposals on inter- and supranational governance between the interwar, wartime, and postwar periods. Continue reading

Weimar Youth and the World War

youthThe concept of ‘generation’ has made a comeback in historical research over the recent years. Ulrich Herbert’s Generation des Unbedingten is one well-received example, describing the ‘war youth generation’ (those born between 1900-1910) as one of the most vocal groups fighting against Weimar democracy and, later, serving as eager functionaries of the Nazi  regime.

Arndt Weinrich’s new book Der Weltkrieg als Erzieher. Jugend zwischen Weimarer Republik und Nationalsozialismus adds to this research trend by analysing the role of the memory of the World War in the Hitler Youth and other youth groups during the Weimar Republic.

Review (English)

Review (German)