Government and Social Democracy from the Start of October to 9 November 1918

  • Marius S. OstrowskiEmail author


How differences of opinion in Germany’s Social Democracy regarding conduct in war led to its split must be presumed to be known in this work. The effect of this split had been that the wing of Social Democracy that held itself to be bound to authorise the Reich leadership war credits fell into an ambiguous stance towards it. It could not authorise it the means to wage war without depriving its own criticism of the leadership’s methods of waging it of their efficacy, whereby this criticism took on an unrealistic tinge. Meanwhile, of the opponents of war credit authorisation some became enemies of the old social-democratic politics entirely, and took up the traditions of the Blanquist movement, which was directed immediately towards political overthrow. The gulf between the credit authorisers and the credit refuseniks became wider. But the latter, whose left wing had constituted itself in Easter 1917 as the party of Independent Social Democracy, disaggregated into social democrats and members of the Blanquist-revolutionary Spartakus League or the equally anti-reformist Gruppe Internationale.

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© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.All Souls CollegeUniversity of OxfordOxfordUK

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