How Surprising Is It That the Weimar Republic Survived from 1919-1924?

1528 WordsFeb 7, 20137 Pages
How surprising is it that the Weimar Republic survived from 1919-1924? With the ending of the First World War, Germany entered a grand new era in its history, one that showed promise and change for the good, however, immediately from its outset, the Weimar Republic encountered serious difficulties both externally and within. In this essay, I will asses how surprising it is that the Weimar Republic did not fall into ruin between the years 1919-1924 by considering the effects of the war and the weakness of the Weimar Constitution upon the Republic as well as the economic problems faced and the threats from both sides of the political spectrum. As the war neared its conclusion, Germany was tired and depleted. The people were…show more content…
The Reichstag was now elected and made the laws and appointed the Government whilst there was also one elected president. On the whole, the Constitution seemed an ideal way forward for Germany, however there were two flaws hidden within it that seeped into the limelight and sought chaos throughout the Republic. The use of proportional representation within the voting system lead to the creation of dozens of tiny parties, with no single party strong enough to get a majority, culminating in no government being able to gets its laws passed in the Reichstag. Furthermore, Article 48 of the Constitution stated that in an emergency, the president did not need the agreement of the Reichstag but could issue his own degrees, the problem being that there was no definition of what constituted an emergency so it was heavily abused. It was this flaw that allowed Hitler to take power, legally. This a subtle threat to the stability of the republic and when fully appreciated, it is remarkable that the republic lasted so long, but it must be said that these factors were not abused so much within the stated 5 year period, more so after that near the end of the republic. On the whole however, it is surprising that the republic lasted so long with the potential threat of these two vital flaws in the
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