The old saw, "Gennany is the heart of Europe, Saxony the heart of Germany," Treitschke derided as that "favorite, self congratulatory phrase" parroted by reactionary Saxons. His ridicule is understandable. He was born a Saxon, yet adored Prussia, which forced his native kingdom into the Kaiserreich. Historians of this century, also loyal in a sense to the German Empire, have dismissed internal affairs of the federal states as parochial. Thus Saxony, though wracked by political agitation more severe than in any other German state during the last two decades of the Wilhelmian era, has been generally looked upon as peripheral to the great national issues of the day. Solid as Treitschke's grounds may in his time have been for scoffing at the anachronism of Saxon particularism, recent history has shown that Saxony was after all the heart of Gennany in more than the geographic sense. It was by far the most Lutheran region of Gennany and was often called the "model land" of Liberalism, a way of life not to be confused with liberal democracy in the M usterliindle, Baden, or in the Kingdom of Wiirttemberg. In Land Sachsen the small independent entre preneur did not vanish from the scene during the industrial boom of 1871-g0 as he did in Rhineland-Westphalia.
Election Battles and the Spectre of Democracy in Germany, 1860-1918
Author: James N. Retallack
Publisher: Oxford University Press
'Red Saxony' reappraises Germany's prospects for democratic governance from the mid-19th century to the collapse of the Second Reich, asking: how was Germany governed in the era of Bismarck and Kaiser Wilhelm II? How did fear of revolution push liberal and conservative parties together? How did Germany's leaders see their nation's future?
Gustav Stresemann was the exceptional political figure of his time. His early death in 1929 has long been viewed as the beginning of the end for the Weimar Republic and the opening through which Hitler was able to come to power. His career was marked by many contradictions but also a pervading loyalty to the values of liberalism and nationalism. This enabled him in time both to adjust to defeat and revolution and to recognize in the Republic the only basis on which Germans could unite, and in European cooperation the only way to avoid a new war. His attempt to build a stable Germany as an equal power in a stable Europe throws an important light on German history in a critical time. Hitler was the beneficiary of his failure but, so long as he was alive, Stresemann offered Germans a clear alternative to the Nazis. Jonathan Wright's fascinating new study is the first modern biography of Stresemann to appear in English or German.
Political, intellectual, and biographical studies have long dominated the scholarly investigation of German life. Bringing together for the first time the methodological and thematic diversity and richness of current work on the history of the German working class, this collection of original research explores the powerful impact of socialism and communism on modern German history. Concentrating on social history generally, and on labor and women's history, gender studies, the history of everyday life, and personal narratives in particular, these essays deepen our understanding of the richness and complexity of both Germany's past and German historiography of the present day.
Max Weber and His Contemporaries provides an unrivalled tour d'horizon of European intellectual life in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and an assessment of the pivotal position within it occupied by Max Weber. Weber's many interests in and contributions to, such diverse fields as epistemology, political sociology, the sociology of religion and economic history are compared with and connected to those of his friends, pupils and antagonists and also of those contemporaries with whom he had neither a personal relationship nor any kind of scholoarly exchange. Several contributors also explore Weber's attitudes towards the most important political positions of his time (socialism, conservatism and anarchism) and his own involvement in German politics. This volume contributes not only to a better understanding of one of the most eminent modern thinkers and social scientists, but also provides an intellectual biography of a remarkable generation. This book was first published in 1987.