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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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From Mass Party to Cadre Party The Organization of the KPD

From Mass Party to Cadre Party The Organization of the KPD

(p.194) 6 From Mass Party to Cadre Party The Organization of the KPD
The Death of the KPD

Patrick Major

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the evolution of the organizational structure of the Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands (KPD) in West Germany from a mass party to a party of professional revolutionary cadres. Under the exceptional circumstances of late Weimar, the KPD was unable to preserve its mass base under the Nazi regime and it was forced into an ultra-conspiratory role. After emerging from this illegality, the KPD broke off isolation and decided to become not only a proletarian mass party but a Volkspartei with national appeal.

Keywords:   Nazism, proletarian mass party, revolutionary cadres, Volkspartei, illegality

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