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Germany’s Catholic Fraternities and the Weimar Republic


Jeremy Stephen Roethler

Through the last century, Catholic fraternity alumni have served as German chancellors, presidents, federal ministers, state executives, and leading voices in Germany’s parliament. They have played leading roles in the Catholic press, in Catholic youth groups, in Catholic civic associations, and in the German Catholic hierarchy. After World War II, Catholic fraternity alumni played founding roles in the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and the Christian Social Union (CSU), the two parties that led West Germany’s transition from its catastrophic defeat («zero hour») to the economic miracle (1949–1969). This book considers the ideas that many of these Catholic leaders encountered as college students or as active alumni in their fraternities in the fifteen years before Adolf Hitler came to power.
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← viii | ix →Illustrations

← ix | x →

Figure 1. Coat of arms of “Aenania München,” the oldest and founding fraternity chapter of the Cartel Union of Catholic German Student Fraternities (“Cartellverband der katholischen deutschen Studentenverbindungen”) or CV. Founded in 1856, the CV is the largest of Germany’s three major Catholic national fraternity organizations. Reproduced with permission from the CV.

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