Germany Essay Questions (1 Viewer)


Feb 20, 2003
Here is the thread to post your essay questions and assessment questions on Germany. This will become a very helpful resource for your revision on this topic.

Here are a few to get the thread started:

Account for the collapse of the Weimar Republic in 1933

Outline the foundations of the Nazi party in terms of its structures and politics

Discuss the role of the conservative parties and elites in the political process of Germany up until 1933

Assess the impact of the Great Depression on Germany

Explain how Hitler rose to the position of Fuehrer of Germany

Explain how the Nazi Party consolidated its power from 1933-1934

Outline ways in which German social and cultural life was transformed under Nazism

Account the impact of Nazi racial policies on the occupied territories and the Jewish communities to 1945.

Outline the racial policy of the Nazi party and explain how it affected German society

Account for the aims of Nazi foreign and assess the extent to which these aims were achieved

Outline the methods employed by the Nazi war machine in attempting to win the war against the Allies

Account for the degree of opposition to Nazism inside of Germany to 1945

Account for the military defeat of Germany in 1945 and the ensuing collapse of Nazism


Account for the failure of democracy in Germany in 1933

Discuss the importance of militarism to the aims of Nazism

Explain how Nazi foreign policy contributed to the upsurge of nationalism between 1934 and 1941

Explain how the Nazis exploited attitudes of racism in Germany

Assess the extent to which Germany was totalitarian state in the period between 1934-1945


Explain how Hitlers final solution impact the Jewish community of Germany

Outline the contribution of paramilitary groups such as the SA and SS to the power of the Nazi party

Assess the extent to which the Nazi party controlled the Wehrmacht during WW2

4Account for the role of women in German society under the Nazis

Explain the importance of youth organisations in Hitlers ideology

These are thanks to the member yttrious.

So please contribute your essay questions and assessment questions for the greater good of all HSC students!


secksy beast
Sep 27, 2003
On Top.
wherd u get all these qs from, did u derive it from the syllabus??


Feb 19, 2003
Theres are from some HTA papers:

Explain why Germany was defeated in World WAr II despite its early successes
Describe the relationship between the wehrmacht and the Nazi regime in the period 1935 - 1945
Account for the failure of democracy in Germany in the period 1918 - 1934
Evaluate the impact of Nazism on German society in the period 1933 - 1945.


Feb 19, 2003
Heres some more, these are hard ones if you take them as essays.......i dont think stuff like this would appear on the hsc, but it might come in useful. I just wrote like a paragraph on each and kept it as my notes. I've got them printed off this webpage before and i forgot the url:

Discuss and assess the historiography on the dissolution of the WEimar Republic and the Nazi seizure of power.

The WEimar REpublic failed and came to an end in 1933. Why did it notcollapse earlier, indeed, well before 1933

To what extent was the Third REich reactionary and to what extent was it revolutionary

Weimar failed and Adlof Hitler succeeded, but both happened. Explain why Hitler and the Nazi Party were able to become the rulers of Germany in 1933.

Did Nazism in any way represent a revolution in Germany life? What imapct did the Nazi regime have on German society in the 1930 and 1940's

Nazi success in 1933 was the result both of nazi power and weimar weakness. Discuss the major flaws, faults, and errors of the Weimar Republic in the era 1919 - 1933

The question of why the Gemrans turned to Hitler is still being debated by historians and the general public alike. Explain his historians have changed their views over the past forth years.

Given its misogyny (sexist against female), why did Nazism appeal to many German women

What role does big business now appear to have played in German political history from the end of world war I to the start of World WAr II

hitler as far as his foreign policy was concerned, has been called an opportunist, a stragetist, a gambler, etc. What exactly was his foreign policy? Did he have a plan, or was he just improvising?

Why was the Nazi party so successful at the polls from 1930 to 1932? WAs this electoral success the reaso why Hindenburg appointed Adolf Hitler chancellor? Explain.


Super Supre Member
May 18, 2004
Nowhere Exciting..
its ridiculous that u have to learn basically the whole damn topic for a lousy twenty marks.. any idea what theyre most likely to ask? i had a look at past papers and tey have chaged the question completely each year


London Calling
Dec 25, 2003
Well, 2003 already had the depression and its effects on the collapse of the weimer wary...


New Member
Oct 26, 2004
Dammit, all ive done so far is Weimar. Grr our class has done nothin on the actual war... and i was planning on only preparing a racial policy essay. BAH, might have to do a totalitarian one too just to be safe.


That which u feel becomes
Sep 11, 2003
Check the last few HSC questions..

Then check the syllabus dot points..

You might find a pattern!


secksy beast
Sep 27, 2003
On Top.
lol gordo m8 prepare something else besides fact prepare all of germany except war and defeat, u shud b fine, coz if thers one question on war and defeat, then u cud answer the other question


Aug 31, 2005
Lets sure really?
Notes at last!

Well I reckon I agree witht he totalitarian question,t hat is likely to be one of the question choices for German National Study, I did that one in the trila exam. I found it easy to think of things because my teacher went indepth about that and one assignment was looking at women under Hitler, and that therefore means his totalitarian influences on that area of the society at teh time. I also did notes.


 Hitler was born in Braunau, Austria, on April 20, 1889, the son of a minor customs official and a peasant girl.
 In World War Ivolunteered for service in the Bavarian army. He proved a dedicated, courageous soldier, but was never promoted beyond private first class because his superiors thought him lacking in leadership qualities.
 Remained in army until 1920-always kept good relations with the army.
 In September 1919 he joined the nationalist German Workers' party, and in April 1920 he went to work full time for the party, now renamed the National Socialist German Workers' (Nazi) party.
 In 1921 he was elected party chairman (Führer) with dictatorial powers.
 November 1923----Putsch---failed & was sent to jail for 9mths.
 In jail her wrote Mein Kampf--spoke for what he wanted for Germany & of anti-semitism.-also spoke in his book about his revenge on the allies/esp. Fr./ for T. of V.
 He was actually sentenced to 5yrs but the judiciary was corrupt and let those who challenged Weimar Republic off easy, always.
 Released as a result of a general amnesty in December 1924, he rebuilt his party without interference from those whose government he had tried to overthrow.

The Depression was Hitler’s time to shine. Here Hitler found the people easily convinced to take him on. President Hindenburg invoked Section 48 of the Weimar Constitution. Hindengurg could appoint a Chancellor of his choice and overall Reichstag rulings. This was Hitler’s long awaited chance to move into to a powerful enough position to become dictator. Hindenburg had previously regected H’s request to be Chancellor because he had challenged him for presidency in the previous elections.
But first came other Chancellor’s:
 Brning, Chancellor—raised taxes & cut expenditure = decline in business, more economic chaos, more starvation, unemployment rose form 2mill. to 6mill. in 2 yrs.-------he was dismissed on May 1932.
 Papen, Chancellor-called a new election to the Reichstag
-NSDAP increased to 37.3% = 230 Nazis in Reichstag.
-since he had no supp. He again called another election, Nazis lost 34 seats = due to clashes with Communists, seen as a roudy bunch.
1 Dec. 1932 Papen dismissed.
 Schleicher, Chancellor-army chief—pissed Papen off, says he was outmenuvoured by him & immed. Started scheming to get himself back in as Chancellor
 Papen’s plan was to advice Hindenburg to take Hitler as Chancellor, the Nazis would be kept under strict control & Hindenburg’s own men would be positioned around Hitler to also keep him inline. Hindenburg agreed.-Jan. 1933 Schleicher is dismissed & Hitler instated.

Nazi consolidation of power:

 Made “Appeal to the German People”-promised employmeny for all, get back to trad. German values & end to suffering & starvation.
“Fourteen years of Marxism has undermined Germany. One year of Bolshevism would destroy Germany. The richest & most beautiful areas of world civilisation would be transformed into chaos & a heap of ruins.”

 SA/SS went on an immed. campaign of violence.left-wing opposition was beaten (literally), there was little the victims could do.
 Nazis controlled the Ministry for the Interior in both the Reich & Prussia = control of police.
 Reichstag building burnt down in Feb. of 1933blamed communists & prosecuted a man [Dutchman Marinus van der Lbbe] = death sentence.
 Enabling Act passed allowed Hitler greater control & set up the stage for him to run his fascist dictatorship.
 Hindenburg died on 2 Aug. 1934 = Hitler becoming Pres. & Chanc. = dictatorship.
 When there was the vote for Pres. Hitler’s Nazi party was the only party you could vote for got all votes of those pp. who showed up to vote [voting not compulsory].


Daily life in Nazi Germany was manipulated from the beginning of Nazi rule. Propaganda dominated popular culture & entertainment. Anti-intellectualism was used to prevent the people from thinking & feeding into their strong sense of national & military pride. Finally, Hitler & the party realised possibilities of controlling Germany’s youth as a means of continuing the Reich, & insuring total control over a future generation.


 The totalitarian state prohibits all forms of expression which are not direct to its interestsNazis educ. was there to indoctrinate the childrengeared @ expounding Nazi doctrines e.g. Lebensraum [“living space”] & anti-semitism; the denunciation of democratic principles; & exhaultation of all National Socialist [Nazi] ideals.
 All teaching institutions were purged of those who did not conform
 There was a marked delcine in attendance to higher educ.propaganda relies on promotion of doctrines & ideals [emotional level not logical level = propaganda] & ideals not in/of intelligence. E.g. mostly noticable in social science institutions.
 The media & arts was used to promote doctrinethanks to Goebbels the Nazi Propaganda MachineNazis had full control over all mental outlook of pp.


 Racialism & brutality stood opposed to Christian ethicsChurch & State were @ conflict w. one another.
 Protestants (COE) & Rm. Caths. refused to forsake their faith for Nazism & many became martyrs because of this.
 H. demanded one national churchReichkirchehe would be in control.
 The ‘confessional synod’ opposed the proposal w. intensity & 1000nds were imprisoned, incl. notable Martin Niemoller.
 Rm. Caths. protested strongly against the attemp. to dest. Their youth movements or submerged them into their ownRm. Cath. Priests were also sent to ‘concentration camps.’ [Kulturkampf]
 1941By now the St. had silences Christ. crits. & the party declared that it would proceed to eliminate the churchNat. Sol. & Christ. conceptions were irreconcilable.


 Nazi ideology: biological diff. Between male & female had carved out separate spheres for men & women & the woman’s spheres was the home, where, as anture, intended, she ministered to husband & children
 K.K.K.Kitchen (Küche), Children (Kinder), & Church (Kirche)a woman’s only duties.
 Campaign against ‘double-income families’
 June 1933--- a law past that restricted female employment in the civil service to unmarried women over 35also marriage loans intro. for couples only were the prospective wives pledged not to take up employment again while their husbands were at work.
 June 1938---1mill. marriage loans taken up.
 1933-35----about 800,000 women were removed from the labour market due to the measures taken
 female wages, for those that did work, was 50-70% fo the male rate.
 Due to Nazi discouragement@ uni’s female no. fell from 20,000 [1933] to 55,000 [1939]
 Mother & Child movementNational Socialist Welfare Organisation provided maternity courses & baby health facilities on a large scale.
 June 1935---maternity benefits introduced.
 Mother’s Day---changed to H.s mom’s b’daywent from May to 12th Aug.honoured motherhoodofficial state ceremonies
honour cards issued to mothers of large families on this day
upgrade to Honour Crosses based on o. of children in 1939.
 Reich League for Large Families---failed to make much impacted due to the new long-term trend of small families.


 Lebensborn (Spring of Life) plan to create a “master race” through selective breeding and forced adoptions.the plan failed, most babies died after child birth.


 Nuremberg Laws, anti-Jewish legislation introduced by the German National Socialist Party (Nazi) at a party convention in Nuremberg and passed by the Reichstag on September 15, 1935, which disenfranchised all German Jews and prohibited marriage or extramarital relationships between the Aryan German population and Jews.  forbade Jews from keeping “Aryans” as servants, forced Jews to take “Jewish” names, and introduced special passport stamps for Jews.
 Anti-Semitism was a central feature of Nazi ideology, and had provided a convenient rallying call for the National Socialist German Workers' Party (NSDAP) in the 1920s and early 1930s.
 identified the Jews as the root of all Germany's social, economic, and international problems after World War I, and was able to draw on latent anti-Semitic prejudices within certain sections of the German and Austrian populations.
 major boycott of Jewish businesses took place in 1933
 anti-Jewish laws were passed with the intention of purging various professions of Jews, including the civil service, the judiciary, the universities, and the German medical establishment.
 a vicious propaganda war was waged against the Jews by the Ministry for Propaganda and Public Enlightenment of Paul Joseph Goebbels
esp. the magazine Der Stürmer edited by the notorious Julius Streicher
 Jews found employment highly difficult.
 “Night of the Broken Glass”was when SS men went around and smashed the windows of Jewish shops etc…and vandalised themhighgly humiliating to those owners of the establishments.
 Nov 1938Nazis accused a Polish Jew od murdering Ernest von Rath, a German offical at the Paris Embassy.
A Brutal purge of the Jews was done to force them to pay the finepurges so fierce a majority of Jews fled the country
$400mill fine.
 further step in the campaign to rid Germany of its entire Jewish community
HOLOCOST : death camps, concentration camps, ghettosincl. jews & anyone who oppsoed H. or was a racial minority, or not Aryan.


 Joseph GoebbelsPropaganda Machine born in Rheydt, and educated at the universities of Bonn, Berlin, and Heidelberg.
 he became the apostle of unreasoning hatred of the Jews and other “non-Aryan” groups such as the Slavs.
 Goebbels used all media of education and communications to further Nazi propagandistic aims, instilling in the Germans the concept of their leader as a veritable god and of their destiny as the rulers of the world.
 Propaganda Cinema was usedNewsreels would show events of the war, but they would show Germans beating the Allies even when they weren’t.
 Kept the fact that they were losing the war all the way up until they were bombed in Berlineven then they made excuses e.g. that the Allies were losing & the only way they could win might be to bomb the capital
 The Nazis & its propaganda controlled every part of German life.
media, newspapers, routine of daily life, who worked & were, education, religion, extracurcutlar activities for children (Hitler Youth), what women were supposed to do at home, posters, radio, books, political groups, magazines, postcards etc… &this is when their not at war!
 H. w. the help of Goebbels indoctrinated everyone by controlling their lives, not only through propaganda, but also through terrorfascism/totalitarianism/authoritarian govt.


 SS, abbreviation of Schutzstaffel (protection squad), the German Nazi organization in charge of the security services and programmes of mass murder.
 established by Julius Schreck in April 1925 as a bodyguard unit for Adolf Hitler
 January 193350,000 members
 staff of the concentration campsDachau
 March 1934 the SS took charge of all German police organizations, incl. Gestapo
 1936 its camp guards were organized into TV (Totenkopfverbände, Death's Head squads) and the Lebensborn (Spring of Life) organization began work on Himmler's plan to create a “master race” through selective breeding and forced adoptions.
 January1939 SD began to organize Jewish “emigration”(deportation)
 March SS worked with the Slovak nationalist leader Josip Tito against the government of Czechoslovakia
 May its troops were reorganized at the Waffen-SS
 September SD members disguised as Polish soldiers “invaded” German territory
 SS units murdered Polish nobles, priests, and professionals and drove about 2.3 million Polish Jews into ghettoes
 1939 officer Christian Wirth organized the murder of 100,000 people alleged to be mentally or physically “unfit”.
 By this point the SS had 258,000 members, most of them organized under the RSHA (Reichssicherheitshauptamt, central office for state security)
 secret body, led by Heydrich, with powers over all the subjects of the Nazi Party except party members
 October 1939 the SS RuSHA  began deporting about 1 million Poles, replacing them with German-speakers from the Baltic states and eastern Europe
 Jan 1941 SS took powers to execute “enemies of the state” without trial
 March/Julylaunch of the “final solution”death camps genocide of about 6 million people designated as Jewish under the Nazis' Nuremberg Laws of 1935
 SS men were the overseers of the death camps, concentration camps and ghettoswomen also SS memberskilled many pp. through scientific experimentation, starvation, disease, & gas chambers.
 165 labour camps in which about 600,000 prisoners worked for the SS firm Ostindustrie GmbH through secret arrangements, numerous companies producing building materials, weapons, textiles, leather goods, and foodstuffs
 Hitler, informed of Himmler's attempts to negotiate with the Allies, abolished the SS and expelled Himmler from the party shortly before his suicide on April 30, 1945.
 SA, abbreviation of Sturmabteilung, also known in English as Stormtroopers or Brownshirts, the name of a security organization of the German Nazi party.
 SA was led by Ernst Röhm
 In March 1931 a rebellion against Hitler led by members of the Berlin SA was suppressed by the SS.
 Röhm took control of the SA once again, launching it into street battles with the Communist party during the election campaigns of July and November 1932.
 From January 30, 1933, when the Nazi party became the dominant group in the government, the 50,000 SA members, now designated “auxiliary police”, persecuted Jews, fought against Communists and Social Democrats, organized book burnings, and helped to intimidate voters in the elections in March.
 In May the SA, the SS, and the veterans' group, the Stahlhelm, were taken over by the army ministry and in December Röhm became a minister without portfolio.
 Röhm's ambitions were to create a new “people's army” from the SA.
 H. dealt with this by using SS, led by Himmler to eradicate those to powerful in the group, including Rohm. Night of the Long Knives”, at least 86 other SA officers were killed.
 Viktor Lutze took over control of the SA. active in the organized persecution of Jews known as Kristallnacht, on November 9 and 10, 1938
 As the power of the SS grew, Lutze engaged in fruitless discussions with army leaders about how to resist Himmler's organization. In 1943 he went to Cracow to take part in the occupation government of Poland, but was killed in a road accident soon after his arrival. The SA effectively died with him.
 The Gestapo The Geheime Staatspolizei (Secret State Police), known as the Gestapo, was created in 1933 to suppress opposition to the Hitler regime. In 1936, when it was incorporated into the state, the Gestapo was declared not subject to legal restraints and responsible only to its chief, Heinrich Himmler, and to Hitler.
 In 1936, when it was incorporated into the state, the Gestapo was declared not subject to legal restraints and responsible only to its chief, Heinrich Himmler, and to Hitler.

Hitler Youth:

 German Nazi youth organization, one of the key elements in Adolf Hitler's National Socialist master plan to extend absolute control over all aspects of life within the new Germany.
 Under the ruthless direction of Baldur von Schirach, a member of the Führer's inner circle, the Hitler Youth became a force to be reckoned with in the early 1930s.  Von Schirach, Youth Leader of the Reich in June 1933
 1936 all rival organizations were banned/ became compulsory from those 10-18 “Hitler Youth Law”membership reached 8.7mill.
 children were placed in different cadres and different special schools for political education according to their ages
 15 to 18yrs had their own departments of culture, press, propaganda, and sports.
 The intention behind all this was to indoctrinate a future generation of Aryan Nazi leaders
 In the last days of the war, when the German army was broken and Hitler was cornered in his bunker, it was to the adolescents of the Hitler Youth that he turned for the defence of Berlin.
 Girls took place in the BDM & Jungamadel
 Boys took place in HD.
 “Hitler Youth Service Law”March 1939it specified that boys & girls of H.Y. were to ‘volunteer’ for annual public service e.g. harvest gatheringprob. To cope w. low labour in agricultural areas.
by having a law to say you must volunteer it doesn’t really make it voluntaryonly put there to make it seem like H. cares about your opinion.
 those who resisted H. & his regime were put into camps, killed, or shunned form society.
 E.g. “swing-clubs”, Scholls’ were arrested, tortured & executed in Feb 1943
 If organisations got to big they would be eradicated by SS/SA/Gestapo, & if they were small they wouldn’t have a large enough effect.

The Camps

During the 1930s and 1940s, German Nazi leaders established 22 concentration camps where Jews, along with Romany gypsies, homosexuals, Communists, Slavs, and others judged “undesirable”, were imprisoned. Many prisoners were worked to death, shot, gassed, or given lethal injections. By the end of the war, more than 6 million people had died in concentration camps. This map shows the locations of the major camps in Germany and Poland. Majdanek was the first camp to be liberated by the Red Army, in July 1944.

But jsut in case if it isn't I did a practise opening paragraph when my teacher wanted us to do pratice essays I hated that overload of info back then. But here it is: Depression question:
Discuss the impact of the Depression on Democracy in Germany in the period up to 1934.
Until Hitler became so ruler over Germany in 1934 the country had been run democratically by a weak coalition government called the Reichstag. The Reichstag consisted of the rich, and Reichstag means house of the wealthy. Many parties vied for supremacy, and in the end a coalition government had to be formed so that there would be a majority party ruling as there is supposed to be. Three parties, the SPD, Zentrum and the DNVP formed the coalition. The President at the time of the Depression (1929-1939) was Hindenberg, who had led the Germans into an embarrassing defeat in World War One, but the people blamed a weakness within the people, by Communists, rather than him. With the weak government trying to establish stability in a country rout by violence, protests and boycotts by Communist parties, and still struggling to pay money it owed to those countries involved in World War One, stated in the 'war guilt' clause of the Treaty of Versailles, the Depression hit Germany early and hard.

I don't know if it's any good but you got it. :) :) :)


Sep 8, 2004
... our teacher says totalitarianism as well. So that's social/eco nature of Nazi society, 1933/34- 1939/45. You can talk about Gleichastlung-Volksgemeinschaft-Holocaust- slav/bolshevist union thing, its really big. I think in 2002 they asked about the 'jewish community' specifically, so that's really about the nature of the Nazi state and how it was part of the greater structure of totalitarianism...

I think then the next question will be war/ foreign policy, pretty similar to last year's, because it definitely wont be on Weimar again... they can't turn the 1918- 1933 period question any other way I think, in 2003 it had a Depression focus, 2004- Hitler+Nazi Party effect on collapse. This is the last year they can ask about 1939 onwards, so maybe they'll do it again... wish Weimar was a possibility. So easy. I'd be so mad if they asked it again... I'm not going to go over it as much... but the independent 2005 trial questions this year were:
a, 'Explain the collapse of democracy in Germany in the period up to 1933'
b, 'Assess the extent to which Nazi Germany was a totalitarian state in the period to 1945'

... does anyone have CSSA 2005 for Germany? They didn't ask about Weimar, did they?


New Member
Dec 2, 2004
They've never done a just Weimar question, only the collapse in 1933. However, they have covered most of the other areas, so I'm thinking more early Weimar, eg 18-23, or somehting on the period of relative stability.

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