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Part B: The November Revolution


This section covers a remarkable series of events in later October and November 1918 that include Germany becoming a republic and the First World War finally coming to an end.
The Historian, William Carr, argues that

The German Revolution, like the March Revolution in Russia, was spontaneous in its origins. ….It was also a bloodless revolution.’


Notes will be required on the following aspects:


1.

Problems of peace-making




This involves considering:




(i)

The German request for an armistice




(ii)

President Wilson’s demands




(iii)

Ludendorff’s resistance and resignation.




2.

Constitutional monarchy is established




This involves considering:




(i)

Limitations on the Emperor’s powers




(ii)

The establishment of government responsible to the Reichstag




(iii)

Controls over the military.




3.

Conditions in Germany




This involves considering:




(i)

The effects of the allied blockage




(ii)

The shock of defeat




(iii)

Evidence of differences between classes and between regions; tensions in society




(iv)

Evidence of anti-Semitism.




4.

Naval Mutiny




This involves considering:




(i)

The mutiny in two cruisers and the reasons for this




(ii)

The spread of the mutiny in Kiel




(iii)

The widening of protest to include workers and soldiers in Germany




(iv)

The setting up of workers’ and soldiers’ councils.




5.

Political Revolution




This involves considering:




(i)

Different left-wing political groups




(ii)

The setting up of the Bavarian Republic




(iii)

The Kaiser’s abdication




(iv)

Ebert becomes Chancellor.



6.

A Troubled Government




This involves considering:




(i)

The Ebert-Groener Pact




(ii)

Signing the armistice




(iii)

Forming a new government




(iv)

Workers and Soldiers councils; the Berlin Congress




(v)

Limits on Government control of Germany.




7.

The Far Left Fails




This involves the following:




(i)

The Spartacists, their leaders and their beliefs




(ii)

How the Rising came about




(iii)

Its failure; Noske’s use of Freikorps, the death of their leaders




(iv)

The issue of workers councils, the miners’ strike




(v)

Resentment at the use of controls and central planning.



Issue to debate


Ebert’s aim was to avoid a real social revolution in Germany.’
What can be said for and against this view?
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