Weimar Communism as Mass Movement 1918-1933 (Paperback)

Weimar Communism as Mass Movement 1918-1933 Cover Image
By Ralf Hoffrogge (Editor), Norman Laporte (Editor)
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A quarter of a century after the opening of the archives in Berlin and Moscow, the role of the German Communist Party (KPD) is the subject of a new wave of studies. This book makes this new field of scholarship available in English for the first time.

The book begins with the editors' comprehensive contextualisation of the KPD within the history of the ill-fated Weimar Republic, as well its location within the Moscow-based Communist International (Comintern), thus bringing together the global and the 'local'. In the rest of the book, authors expose the rich texture of the world of German Communism. Attention is given to the party's revolutionary origins in 1918/19, accounting for the importance of not only Rosa Luxemburg's Spartacus League, but also the 'Left Radicals', whose stronghold was Bremen and north-western Germany. The policy dilemmas of being a mass party in Germany are elucidated, as is 'Stalinisation' the process by which the party's fate and policy-making ultimately became dominated by Moscow.

However, this volume also includes a detailed appraisal of left-wing Communists' opposition to Stalin and Stalinisation, as well as the party's changing relationship with the SPD-led trade unions. A section in the volume presents new research on how German communism aspired to reach beyond its core support among the working class, examining its overtures to peasants, avant-garde artists, pacifists and prominent left-wing personalities outside the party's ranks. Finally, an account of Stalin's own betrayal of German communism is offered after the Nazis' 'seizure of power' in 1933.

This book represents essential reading for academic, undergraduate and general readers interested in twentieth German history and politics and the interwar communist movement. It is especially relevant now, 100 years after the 1917 October Revolution.

With thanks to the Nina Fishman translation award run by the Amiel Melburn Trust.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781910448984
ISBN-10: 1910448982
Publisher: Lawrence & Wishart
Publication Date: October 1st, 2017
Pages: 318
Language: English