30 marks. (I would) Spend 10 minutes planning and 40 minutes writing. Choice of two
questions from anything in the entire course (except the controversies, I think!) Possible questions / areas include:
Kaiser’s responsibility for political problems faced by the Second Reich pre -1914.
The role of moderate reform in maintaining the political status quo pre-1914.
'The political system of the 2nd Reich was primarily an autocracy of the elites' How far do you agree?
Impact of WW1 on existing social and political tensions.
Reason for Kaiser’s abdication?
Stability of the Weimar republic.
Impact of Versailles terms on the stability of the Weimar Republic.
How far do you agree that Germany experienced a period of political calm, economic development, and social progress in the period 1925 - 29?
To what extent was the collapse of the Weimar Republic caused by the lurch to the right by leading politicians after 1930?
Rise of the Nazis.
Nazi consolidation of Power.
Reasons for final solution.
Reasons for poor WW2 War Economy.
All of the above sample questions that I have included were ones created by my (very good) history teachers. They have chosen which factor to focus the question on, but the actual question could ask about another factor instead. In any case, include 4 or 5 factors.
40 marks. (I would) Spend 10-15 minutes planning 55-60 minutes writing. Choice of two controversies: Germany’s role in causing the First World War
and the popularity and efficiency of the Nazi state, 1933 - 39
There are 24 out of the 40 marks on part b for source use, so USE THEM THROUGHOUT. As a set, have them drive your answer, using own knowledge throughout to support your argument.
-Long term expansionist aims of Germany = wanted an Empire, Weltpolitik (use both Moroccan Crises as an example), Flottenpolitik and the antagonisation of the British.
-Use of War as a distraction from domestic problems? = SPD became biggest party in Reichstag 1912 elections, long-term political and economic problems created by Industrialisation + Urbanisation threatened the political status quo, many elites believed war was the best way to preserve the monarchy.
-Power of military = Zabern affair, military potentially pushing Kaiser towards War.
NOT Germany's fault:
-Actions of other powers = Britain engaged in arms race to defend its naval superiority and Empire, A-H's aggressive actions in the Balkans
'-> LINKS TO: -Fear of encirclement = all European powers only felt safe in the rising tension by increasing armaments and staying close to their loyal allies (Entente powers of Br, Fr + Ru. Central powers of Ger + A-H)
If you are choosing this one you SHOULD be aware of the historiography surrounding Germany's blame, particularly Fischer's thesis. In the exam, you will probably get a source where you can comment something along the lines of " '.......' (Source A) rejects Fischer's opinion that Germany went to war on imperialist ambitions alone", or whatever. Link this back to the question though... "and therefore it can be seen how Germany's fear of encirclement was a crucial factor, more so than supposed imperialist ambitions", if that is your argument.
Pop. + Eff. of Nazi State '33 - '39:
Well, I am not choosing this one, as I feel there is more to learn and more could be asked of you. However, I can say that you should focus on these areas:
-Groups that it gained popularity with (e.g. Youth was the most popular?).
-Lack of opposition + reasons (e.g. Terror, propaganda?).
-Hitler's role as dictator in the Nazi regime.