German nationalism

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German nationalism emerged as a political movement in Austria from the nationalism of the German-Austrians at the time ("German nationalism in Austria"), which was not codified until 1882 with the Linz program . In this program, the part of the then German was educated elite of Austria-Hungary , the tight integration of the closed German settlement areas of the Austrian half of the empire to the neighboring German Reich represented, making it again the great German solution emulated by 1848/49.

The political union was justified with the affiliation of these areas to the former Holy Roman Empire (until 1806) and to the German Confederation (1815–1866). Old Austria had a leading position in both. In the Habsburg monarchy , German nationalism was mainly represented by the German national movement , which initially acted as Greater German liberal and from 1882 increasingly as pan-German and anti-Semitic . In 1885 there was a break between the supporters of Georg von Schönerer , that is, the Pan-Germans and the traditional Greater Germans.

As a result of the “Anschluss” in 1938, Austria became part of the National Socialist German Reich under Adolf Hitler . After the Second World War and the state separation from the German Reich or the reestablishment of the Republic of Austria as a sovereign state, people who demanded a political rapprochement between Austria and the Federal Republic of Germany and thus in rejection of the Austrian nation and in contrast to the official one were referred to as "German national" Austria's demarcation policy stood. In the Second Republic, the supporters of German nationalism have been part of the FPÖ's regular electorate since this party was founded.


In the second half of the 19th century, German nationalism was split up into various groups that harbored anti-clerical , anti-Semitic and Greater German ideas as a common denominator .

This was recorded in the policy paper “Linz Program”, which was drawn up in Linz in 1882 by politicians Victor Adler , Karl Lueger and Georg von Schönerer , among others . The movement drifted apart as early as 1885 when Schönerer revised the policy paper and added an Aryan paragraph . From the end of the 1880s, the Linz program was only upheld by fans of Schönerer. However, the supporters of the “ United German Left ”, the “ German People's Party ”, the “ German Agrarian Party ”, the “ German Workers Party ” and the “ German Radical Party ”, a split from the Schoenerians , were also fundamentally German national .

In the interwar period , the Greater German People's Party (GDVP) was established in Salzburg in 1920 , and was an amalgamation of 17 German national groups. The "immovable guiding star" of this party was the connection to Germany. The establishment of the GDVP and the smaller Landbund as the third force in the republic, which was, however, significantly smaller than the other two camps of social democracy and Christian democracy, led to the term “ third camp ”, which is often used today as a synonym for the German national camp finds.

After the " Anschluss " to the German Reich had been achieved in 1938, between 1938 and 1945 the NSDAP and the German national camp were effectively congruent .

After the Second World War, the term German nationalism was initially discredited by the NSDAP regime . Due to the fact that many representatives of the German national camp as former National Socialists were not politically able to act until 1949 (former NSDAP members were excluded from any political activity until 1949 and had no right to vote), German nationalism became an ideology of outsiders.

The VdU and later the FPÖ were supported by people who came from the German national camp and its organizations (especially striking student associations ). The basic program of the FPÖ from 1956 speaks of a general and non-binding membership of the “German cultural community”. Although Austrian patriotism was also adopted in certain points, which became the antithesis of German nationalism, especially after 1945, the FPÖ still recruited most of its politicians from the German national camp. In addition, an extremely defensive attitude towards non-German-speaking minorities such as the Carinthian Slovenes was revealed (→  local sign dispute ), and later also towards migration and European integration .

At the same time, German national corporations experienced a significant boom in the 1950s and 1960s, which only declined with the opening and democratization of the universities. Representative for this is the decline of the RFS , which fell in the ÖH elections from 32% in 1953 to 2% in 1987.

Today, German nationalism only makes up 17% of the FPÖ's core voters, as the party has tended more and more to right-wing populism since Jörg Haider's rise in the mid-1980s (→  FPÖ's voters ).

From Austrian German nationalism to ethnic nationalism in Germany

While German nationalism in Austria initially and primarily aimed at an amalgamation of "Germans" inside and outside the existing borders of the Reich, the völkisch nationalism that arose from German nationalism in Germany wanted to exclude all "non-Germans". With their appeal to traditional privileges, the nobility and bourgeoisie were able to agree on a common denominator that distracted them from mutual rivalries.

Of ethnically dominated nationalism recruited after German unification in 1871 on one side of the anti-liberal bourgeois forces in about the German Conservative Party merged, and the preservation of aristocratic privileges and for protectionism tended on the other side of the petty bourgeoisie that against the emancipation of the disadvantaged were. The German National Sales Aid Association (since 1893) was a nationally anti-Semitic white-collar union that turned not only against Jewish emancipation , but also against the emancipation of women .

After the First World War , conservatives from both camps united in the German National People's Party (DNVP), which was basically opposed to the Weimar Republic . Nevertheless, the DNVP participated in several governments with the German People's Party and the Center . In March 1933 it formed a coalition with the NSDAP and was dissolved a few months later.


Individual evidence

  1. ^ The political system in Austria. (PDF; 607 kB) Federal Press Service , 2000, archived from the original on July 29, 2004 ; accessed on April 28, 2019 .
  2. ^ Bernd Vogel: German nationalism in Vorarlberg. Lecture from February 23, 2005, online on the website of the Vorarlberg State Library (DOC; 61 kB).
  3. ↑ in general see also page 46 ( Memento from April 27, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 325 kB).
  4. ^ Anton Pelinka : The FPÖ in an international comparison. In: conflict & communication online. Vol. 1, No. 1, 2002 (PDF; 130 kB).
  5. ^ Heribert Schiedel , Martin Tröger: To the German national corporations in Austria. DÖW . 2012 (PDF; 160 kB).
  6. Austrians today feel like a nation. In: . March 12, 2008, accessed April 28, 2019.
  7. ^ Representation of the German Historical Museum on the German Conservative Party
  8. ^ Representation of the German Historical Museum for the German National People's Party