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Toutes les dissertations

FACTORY COUNCIL LAW

FACTORY COUNCIL LAW (Betriebsrategesetz); a product of the Workers' and Soldiers' Councils* of the November Revolution,* it was introduced in the National Assembly* on 21 August 1919. Article 165 of the new Constitution* gave workers and salaried employees the minimal hope of creating factory councils for the defense and promotion of economic interests. The law, designed to make reality of this hope, required...

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EUPEN-MALMEDY AFFAIR.

The districts of Eupen and Malme´dy lie just south of Aachen on the Belgian border. Part of Prussia's* western territories for a century, they were transferred to Belgium by the Versailles Treaty.* Although a majority of the area's 60,000 people retained an allegiance to Germany, and while Versailles called for ‘‘popular consultation'' in the event of a change of sovereignty, a proposed...

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ERNST, MAX

ERNST, MAX (1891–1976), painter, illustrator, and sculptor; member of Cologne's Dada* circle and a founder of French Surrealism. Born in Bru¨ hl, as a young man (1908–1911) he studied philosophy and psychology, training himself as an artist in his spare time. Aroused by Nietzsche's philosophy and van Gogh's art, he was attracted to Expressionism,* joined Junge Rheinland, and began painting in earnest in...

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ENABLING ACT

ENABLING ACT (Erma¨chtigungsgesetz); a term generally reserved for the Reichstag* vote of 23 March 1933 abrogating the legislative function and granting Hitler* dictatorial powers for a period of four years. Only the ninety-four Social Democrats attending the session dissented; the seventy-two Center Party* deputies could have blocked passage. The vote was constitutional because it was based on a provision contained in Article 76...

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EINSTEIN, ALBERT

EINSTEIN, ALBERT (1879–1955), physicist; postulated the theory of the relativity of mass. Born in Ulm, he spent much of his early life in Munich. Averse to classroom regimentation, he withdrew from school at fifteen, relinquished his citizenship, and joined his parents in Milan. He soon relocated to Switzerland, where, upon completing Gymnasium in 1901, he took Swiss citizenship. In rapid succession he wrote...

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EICHHORN, EMIL

EICHHORN, EMIL (1863–1925), politician; served as Berlin's* police chief during the November Revolution.* Born in Ro¨hrsdorf near Chemnitz, he was a mechanic in a metalworking factory before becoming a paid official with the SPD. Serving concurrently in the Baden Landtag (1901–1909) and the Reichstag* (1903–1912), he was initially counted among the SPD's moderates, but gravitated toward the radicals. During the war he organized...

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EBERMAYER, LUDWIG

EBERMAYER, LUDWIG (1858–1933), judge; chief justice and leading prosecutor on the Republic's Supreme Court. Born in No¨rdlingen, he studied law before working during 1883–1902 as a lawyer and judge in Bavaria.* Appointed to the Supreme Court (Reichsgericht) in 1902, he became chief justice in 1918. Upon retiring in 1926, he remained in Leipzig, assuming an honorary professorate at the university. He was the...

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DOBLIN, ALFRED

DOBLIN, ALFRED (1878–1957), novelist, essayist, and physician; known chiefly for the novel Berlin Alexanderplatz. Born into a Jewish family in Stettin, he spent a lonely childhood in Berlin* after his father, proprietor of a tailor shop, fled to America with a shop seamstress; the episode was crucial to his later writing. After earning a medical degree in 1905, he briefly was an...

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DIX, OTTO

DIX, OTTO (1891–1969), artist; best known for his harsh portraits of postwar German society. Born in Untermhaus, near Gera, he studied art privately in 1905–1909 while working in Gera as a decorator's apprentice. His artistic training began in 1909 at Dresden's Technische Hochschule; he remained in the Saxon capital for five years. But it was his wartime ordeal as commander of a machine-gun...

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DIBELIUS, OTTO

DIBELIUS, OTTO (1880–1967), Protestant* minister; superintendent of the Prussian Evangelical Church. Born in Berlin,* he took a doctorate in 1902, obtained a license in theology in 1906, and then held various pastorates for two decades. Among a distinguished group of church leaders, he was stunned by the November Revolution*; yet he viewed it as an opportunity for the Evangelischekirche to renew itself without...

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DAUMIG, ERNST

DA¨UMIG, ERNST (1866–1922), politician; chief advocate for founding a Ra¨terepublik rather than a parliamentary democracy. Born in Merseburg, he failed to learn a trade in his youth and during 1887–1898 served consecutively in the German army and the French Foreign Legion. In 1898, having returned to Germany, he joined the SPD. For several years he assisted with socialist educational programs while working for...

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DAHLEM, FRANZ

DAHLEM, FRANZ (1892–1981), politician; among those who split with the USPD in 1920 to join the KPD. Born in the Lorraine city of Rohrbach, he entered Cologne's SPD after completing business studies in 1913. A soldier in World War I, he joined the breakaway USPD in 1917 and was later a member of Cologne's Workers' and Soldiers' Council.* When in October 1920...

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CONGRESS OF WORKERS' AND SOLDIERS' COUNCILS

CONGRESS OF WORKERS' AND SOLDIERS' COUNCILS (Ra¨tekongress). Held at the request of the USPD, the first and most significant General Congress of German Workers' and Soldiers' Councils met in the Prussian Abgeordnetenhaus from 16 to 21 December 1918. Elections to the event, held in late November and reflective of worker opinion at the time, gave the SPD an overwhelming preponderance of the 514...

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CIVIL SERVICE

CIVIL SERVICE. A considerable section of Germany's middle class (see Mittelstand) consisted of civil servants (Beamten). Since the great mass of this group performed ‘‘politically neutral'' tasks such as teaching, tax collection, postal and railroad operations, municipal services, and the filling of Protestant* pulpits, it is difficult to reconcile its ambivalence (indeed hostility) to the Republic. But like its landowners and officers, Germany's...

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CHAMBERLAIN, HOUSTON STEWART

CHAMBERLAIN, HOUSTON STEWART (1855–1927), racial theorist; his concept of Aryan supremacy was embodied in Nazi mythology. Born to an English admiral in a village near Portsmouth, he was sent to Versailles in 1856 (upon his mother's early death) for tutoring with a grandmother and an aunt. The sojourn had a lasting impact, for when he later studied in England, he felt awkward and...

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CENTRAL ASSOCIATION OF GERMAN CITIZENS OF JEWISH FAITH

CENTRAL ASSOCIATION OF GERMAN CITIZENS OF JEWISH FAITH (Centralverein deutscher Staatsbu¨rger ju¨dischen Glaubens). Founded in 1893 by Raphael Loewenfeld, director of Berlin's* Schillertheater, the Centralverein aimed to combat anti-Semitism* by underscoring the falsity of its allegations. Prosecuting anti-Semites in the courts and assisting in their defeat at the polls, it also worked to strengthen both Jewish and German consciousness while educating Jews* on ways...

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CASSIRER, ERNST

CASSIRER, ERNST (1874–1945), philosopher; with Heinrich Rickert,* Germany's leading neo-Kantian between 1900 and 1930. Born in Breslau of German-Jewish parentage, he studied philosophy and German literature, coming into contact with Hermann Cohen (1842–1918) while at Berlin*; in 1896 he transferred to Marburg to continue studies with Cohen. On his own, Cassirer identified both his method and his philosophy as an example of Cohen's...

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BUCHRUCKER, BRUNO ERNST

BUCHRUCKER, BRUNO ERNST, officer; commanded the illegal Black Reichswehr.*A veteran of the 1919 Baltic campaigns who had been discharged for complicity in the Kapp* Putsch, he was inexplicably given command of the Black Reichswehr in 1923 by Lieutenant-Colonel Fedor von Bock, chief-of-staff of Berlin's* Third Reichswehr Division. A diehard monarchist, he hoped that passive resistance to France's Ruhr occupation* would escalate into a...

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BRONNEN, ARNOLT

BRONNEN, ARNOLT (1895–1959), dramatist; best known for the play Vatermord. He was born in Vienna; his father was Ferdinand Bronnen, a Jewish playwright. After World War I, in which he was wounded and imprisoned, he forsook prewar legal studies and moved to Berlin* in search of success as a freelance writer. He was soon a prominent Expressionist* dramatist. But while his work retained...

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BREITSCHEID, RUDOLF

BREITSCHEID, RUDOLF (1874–1944), politician; a champion of Gustav Stresemann's* fulfillment policy.* Born to a bookshop clerk in Cologne, he studied economics and earned a doctorate in 1898. The same year he assumed editorial positions for newspapers* in Hamburg and Hanover. Moving to Berlin* in 1905, he was soon elected to Wilmersdorf's governing council and served until 1910 as secretary of the Association for...

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BRAUNS, HEINRICH

BRAUNS, HEINRICH (1868–1939), priest and politician; Labor Minister and promoter of the Christian Labor Movement (Christliche Gewerkschaftsbewegung). Born to a Cologne tailor, he studied theology at Bonn and returned to Cologne during 1886–1890 for seminary studies. In 1900, after a decade as a pastor, he turned to social work with the Volksverein fu¨r das katholische Deutschland, a Catholic* group headquartered in Mu¨nchen-Gladbach. Dubbed the...

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BRAUN, OTTO

BRAUN, OTTO (1872–1955), politician; served as Prussian Prime Minister. Born in Ko¨nigsberg to a railway worker, he apprenticed as a printer before joining the SPD in 1889. He soon launched a career in Ko¨nigsberg's Party organization and assumed editorial and printing duties in 1893 with the SPD's Volkstribu¨ne (later the Ko¨nigsberger Volkszeitung). The assignment provoked numerous prison sentences; Hugo Haase,* a practicing attorney...

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BOSCH, ROBERT

BOSCH, ROBERT (1861–1942), industrialist; famous for applying socialism in the workplace. Born in Ulm, he studied precision-tool manufacturing; during extensive travels he became familiar with English socialism. In 1886 he founded the Werksta¨ tte fu¨r Feinmechanik und Elektrotechnik (Workshop for Precision Mechanics and Electrical Engineering), a Stuttgart firm specializing in electrical ignition systems. A friend of Karl Kautsky, leader of the SPD, he...

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BLUMENFELD, KURT

BLUMENFELD, KURT (1884–1963), Zionist; championed the resettlement of Jews* to Palestine. Born to a judge's family in the East Prussian town of Marggrabowa, he was raised in an assimilated home. Although after legal studies he worked briefly in a judicial office, he was increasingly drawn to Zionism. Having joined the Zionist Student Movement in 1905, he was general secretary of the Zionist Federation...

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BLOCKADE

BLOCKADE (March 1915–July 1919); a ‘‘weapon'' instituted by England during the first year of World War I. Retained as a concept almost by accident in the early twentieth century, it was by 1917 the preeminent weapon in the Allied arsenal. Through its refined use, including pressure on neutrals who might otherwise have traded with the Germans, the Allies managed to strangle Germany economically....

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