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The Death of the KPDCommunism and Anti-Communism in West Germany, 1945-1956$
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Patrick Major

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9780198206934

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198206934.001.0001

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Waiting for Stunde Null Exiled Leaders and Resistance Cadres

Waiting for Stunde Null Exiled Leaders and Resistance Cadres

(p.21) 1 Waiting for Stunde Null Exiled Leaders and Resistance Cadres
The Death of the KPD

Patrick Major

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the prehistory of the Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands (KPD) in West Germany before 1945. The Republic's final years had conditioned the political behaviour of the post-war KPD. In 1932, the KPD made a quantitative success in terms of vote and membership. However, most of the votes were protest votes and the vast majority of a fluctuating mass membership were unemployed and difficult to integrate into a stable Communist milieu. After the war, the KPD returned to a significantly different social condition, and its readjustment process lasted well into the 1950s. The Nazi persecution also kept the Communist resistance cadres in a form of suspended animation, unable to return to leadership.

Keywords:   social condition, membership, Communist resistance, politcal behaviour, Nazi persecution

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