1. Growing Tensions in Germany
    • a.      New imperial Germany by Bismarck iin 1871 continued as authoritarian, conservative, military, etc. state during reign of Emperor William II
    •                                                               i.      Unstable and aggressive, he was inclined to tactless remarks
    • 1.      Small group of about 20 strong men joined William in setting government policy
  2. 1914
    • a.      1914: Germany had strongest military and industrial power on Continent
    •                                                               i.      New social configurations as more than 50% German workers had jobs in industry; 30% in agriculture
    • 1.      Changes produced society torn between modernizaito and traditionalism
  3. Growth of industrialization
    • a.      Growth of industrialization led to greater expansion for Social Democratic Party
    •                                                               i.      Despite enactment of new welfare legislation to favor the working classes, William II was no more successful than Bismarck at slowing the growth of the Social democrats
  4. 1912
    • 1.      1912: it became largest single party in the Reichstag
    • a.      At the same time, the party increasingly became less revolutionary and more revisionist in its outlook
    •                                                                                                                                       i.      Still, growth frigntened middle and upper clases, who blamed labor for their own problems 
  5. Expansion
    • a.      With expanision of industry and cities came demands for more political participation and growing sentiment for reforms that would produce greater democratization
    •                                                               i.      Conservative forces, especially the landowning nobility and representatives of heavy industry, two of the powerful ruling groups in Germany, tried to block it by supporiting William II’s activist foreign policy
    • 1.      Expansion would divert people from further democratization
  6. Tensions
    • a.      Tensions in society created by conflict between modernization and traditionalism manifested in new, radicalized, right-wing politics
    •                                                               i.      Number of pressure groups arose to support nationalistic goals 
  7. Groups
    • 1.      Groups like the Pan-German League stressed strong German nationalism and advocated imperialism as tool to overcome social divisions and unite all classes
    • a.      Also anti-Semitic and denounced Jews as destroyers of the national community
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