Collapse of the Weimar Republic

Assess the collapse of the Weimar Republic
Post World War One, Germany faced many political, social and economic crises, each of which weakened the new democracy, yet through its brief period of prosperity in the mid-1920s it was able to maintain power for 14 years. The republic was built on politically unsound foundations, with its early years bringing the detrimental Treaty of Versailles, challenges to the socialist government through political uprisings, as well as unstable leadership as a result of the flawed system. The new republic was also faced with many economic issues, including the unaffordable reparations, the French invasion of Germany’s heartland the Ruhr, passive resistance and hyperinflation, each of which had significant negative impacts upon Weimar. Whilst the early years of democracy in Germany suffered many crises, it experienced a brief period of prosperity in the mid 1920s due to the intervention of new Foreign Minister Gustav Stresemann, who aided international relations, particularly with America who then provided financial aid to the country. Whilst this period allowed for a degree of recovery, the severe effects of the October 1929 Wall Street Crash in combination with the failure of leadership following Stresemann’s death meant that people lost faith in the abilities of the government, instigating movement toward extremist groups, eventually leading to the appointment of Adolf Hitler in 1933. Thus it can be seen that through the limited revival in the period 1924-1929, the Weimar Republic was able to delay the inevitable decay which later occurred.
The new government’s authority was continually undermined and conveyed an impression of weakness due to their inability to effectively deal with the effects of total war, the widespread political uprisings, their signing of the humiliating Treaty of Versailles. The German people had always been led to believe that they were in a winning position in the war and were thus shocked when the...