Germany in the Inter-War Years

Leaving Cert > Dictatorship and Democracy in Europe > Germany in the Inter-War Years

Nazi Party members salute Hitler at a rally. Photo © Life
You learned about Hitler and Nazi Germany in Third Year (just as you did Mussolini), and now you'll revisit Hitler's Germany for a closer look. How exactly did he achieve power? What helped him? What hindered him? What did his policies mean for Germany, and for the world?

You will look more closely at the laws he passed and the actions he took when in power. His foreign policy will be examined in a later section.

This section contains the second Case Study for this topic, the Nuremberg Rallies, footage of which is usually shown in a TV show or documentary that wants to mention Hitler. There are also three key personalities: Propaganda minister Josef Goebbels, film-maker Leni Riefenstahl, and of course Hitler himself.

Continue to Britain in the Inter-War Years




  • Hitler's Rise to Power
    • The Weimar Republic, Dawes Plan, Inflation and Great Depression, Mein Kampf and Propaganda.
  • Establishing a Dictatorship:
    • 1933 election, Enabling Act, Night of the Long Knives, Goebbels and Propaganda, Education and the Hitler Youth.
  • The Economy:
    • Unemployment, Conscription, Autarky, Autobahns, Volkswagen, "Beauty and Strength through Joy".
  • Church-State Relations
    • Reichskirche (Protestant), Concordat (Catholic), Broken promises, Propaganda, "Mit Brennender Sorge (With Burning Rage)".
  • Hitler and the Jews:
    • "Herrenvolk", Anti-Semitic Propaganda, Nuremberg Laws, Kristallnacht, the Final Solution.

Key Terms:  
Inflation, Depression, Totalitarianism, Propaganda, Cult of Personality, Reichskirche, Herrenvolk, Anti-Semitism, Holocaust.
(click here)

Key Personalities: 
Adolf Hitler
Josef Goebbels 
Leni Riefenstahl

Case Study:
The Nuremberg Rallies


"Children, what do you know of the Fuhrer?"
Hitler Youth propaganda poster.




Higher Level (100 marks each)
2015: What were the social and economic problems facing Germany, 1920-1939, and how were they dealt with?

2012: How did Anti-Semitism and the Holocaust affect Europe, 1920 - 1945?

2011: What were the main characteristics of the Nazi state in Germany, 1933 - 1939?

2010: How successfully did German governments deal with the social and economic problems of the
             period 1920 - 1945?
2010: What were the main developments in church-state relations under Hitler and Mussolini?

2009: How did dictators use propaganda and/or terror to maintain their power?

2008: Which had the greater social and economic problems during the inter-war years, Britain or
              Germany? Argue your case, referring to both countries.
2008: What contribution did Josef Goebbels and/or Leni Riefenstahl make to Nazi propaganda?

2007: What were the main characteristics of the Nazi state in Germany, 1933 - 1939?

2006: During the inter-war period, what conditions in Europe contributed to the growth of
          fascist regimes?


Ordinary Level:
2012, Dictatorship and Democracy, Part B
2009, Dictatorship and Democracy, Part B
2006, Dictatorship and Democracy, Part B:
Write a short paragraph on Anti-Semitism and the Holocaust. (30)

2009, Dictatorship and Democracy, Part B:
Write a short paragraph on Church-State relations in Germany under Hitler. (30)

2015, Dictatorship and Democracy, Part C:
What took place at the Nuremberg Rallies in Germany in the 1930s? (30) 

2012, Dictatorship and Democracy, Part C:
What was the importance for Nazi Germany of the Nuremberg Rallies? (40)

2009, Dictatorship and Democracy, Part C:
How did the Nuremberg Rallies and/or Leni Riefenstahl contribute to the Nazi regime? (40)

2008, Dictatorship and Democracy, Part C:
How did the Nuremberg Rallies help to create propaganda for Hitler and the Nazi regime? (40)

2007, Dictatorship and Democracy, Part C:
How did Josef Goebbels and/or Leni Riefenstahl use the German mass media to promote the Nazi movement? (40)

2006, Dictatorship and Democracy, Part C:
How did the Nuremberg Rallies help bring support to the Nazi regime in Germany? (40) 


Hitler admires a model of the new Volkswagen (People's Car)





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