Peasant protest in the empire - The Bavarian example

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Abstract

Rapid industrial growth and technological advances were helping to transform the German Empire into the most dynamic economy in Europe. On the one hand, industrialization and the extension of the market economy offered the peasantry new possibilities of communication, collective action and political articulation. On the other hand, economic change dramatically reduced the contribution of agriculture and rural manufacture to the nation's output and accelerated the process of social polarization in the village. The lack of peasant involvement in all but the most politically innocuous of organizations contrasted quite sharply with some other parts of Germany. The Bavarian Peasants' League, in common with many other expressions of peasant and popular protest in Imperial Germany, fits very uncomfortably into the categories conventionally used by historians. The Deutscher Bauernbund introduced into Bavaria a new and essentially populist dimension which posed a fundamental challenge to governmental authority and to the political foundations of Centrist pre-eminence in southern Germany.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPeasants and Lords in Modern Germany
Subtitle of host publicationRecent Studies in Agricultural History
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Pages110-139
Number of pages30
ISBN (Electronic)9781351720885
ISBN (Print)9781138744530
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Jul 2017

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