Saturday, August 28, 2010

Crouch Touch Pause Engage

This is our mantra for Week 7! All will be explained in class.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Bonne chance dans votre examen!

(Only joking with the flag!!!!!!!!!! I think Napoleon and William the Conqueror would have something to say about this. lol)

Best of luck to those sitting their French orals!!!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Weimar Questions

1 Weimar Republic:

– emergence of the Democratic Republic and the impact of the Treaty of Versailles
– political, economic and social issues in the Weimar Republic to 1929
– collapse of the Weimar Republic 1929–1933
– impact of the Great Depression on Germany

To what extent did weaknesses in the Weimar Republic account for the growth and rise to power of the Nazi Party to 1933?

Account for the successes and failures of democracy in Germany in the period 1918– 1933.


Explain how and why German social and cultural life changed in the period 1923–1939.


Assess the importance of nationalism as a cause of the failure of democracy in Germany in the period 1918–1934.


Assess the impact of conservative parties and elites on German politics in the period 1918–1934.


Assess the view that the collapse of the Weimar Republic was primarily due to the appeal of Hitler and his Nazi Party.


Discuss the impact of the Depression on democracy in Germany in the period up to 1934.


Account for the development of militarism in Germany between 1928 and 1939.


To what extent was Weimar Germany a stable and democratic society by 1929?
How important was the Great Depression to Hitler’s gaining power in 1933?


What impact did military defeat have on German politics in the period from 1918 to 1924?
Why had the Nazis become the dominant political force in Germany by 1933?
Use evidence from the period between 1925 and 1933 to support your answer.


To what extent did the Treaty of Versailles weaken democracy in Germany between 1919 and 1925?
In what ways had Germany achieved political and social stability by 1929?


To what extent were Weimar governments able to resist revolutionary and counter- revolutionary forces in the period from 1919 to 1924?
The weaknesses of the Weimar Republic, rather than the popularity of the Nazis, led to the collapse of German democracy in 1933.
To what extent do you agree with this statement? Give evidence for your answer.


To what extent did Weimar governments solve the problems of Germany in the 1920s?
Why were democratic forces in Germany unable to prevent Hitler’s rise to power by 1933?


To what extent did revolutionary and counter-revolutionary forces destabilize the Weimar Government in the period from 1919 to 1924?
Hitler’s appointment as Chancellor was a result of the Depression. To what extent do you agree with this statement? Give evidence from the period from 1928 to 1933.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Only Four Weeks To Go!!!

“Winning is not a sometime thing, it's an all time thing. You don't win once in a while, you don't do things right once in a while, you do them right all the time. Winning is habit. Unfortunately, so is losing.”
Vince Lombardi

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Don't forget the MH Weimar Homework

At this point Noske called upon the regular army to suppress the putsch. He encountered a blank refusal. The Chef der Heeresleitung General Hans von Seeckt, one of the Reichswehr's senior commanders, told him: "Reichswehr does not fire on Reichswehr."

Assess the influence of the army on German politics in the period 1918–1934.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Do schools kill creativity?

Ken Robinson

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Today's MH responses were so much better!

Do you want sauerkraut with that?

Unhappy Meal!

Today's essay plans for Modern were generally terrible!

Most showed no depth of knowledge or any worthwhile attempt to learn the facts about the collapse of the Weimar Republic. Answers in the HSC need to stand out with their sophisticated argument, depth of knowledge and high level of detail. This was not on display in any of the essay plans I was given today. To be really honest a marker would have looked at the group as a whole and thought they were from lower ability student group. This is VERY VERY worrying!

Your next topic is Leni Riefenstahl, please make an effort.

What happens in practise happens in the game.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Henry Adams

History is the most aristocratic of all literary pursuits, because it obliges the historian to be rich as well as educated.

Weimar Historiography 1

The fall of the Weimar Republic in 1933 is often depicted as some sort of inevitable series of events, or as if the simultaneous rise of the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP - the Nazi Party) was a simple matter of cause-and-effect. Yet both of these scenarios reflect a multiplicity of influences, and furthermore the failure of German democracy and the ascension to power by the Nazis were by no means consequential or directly causative occurrences.

This essay is particularly focused on historiographical explanations for the collapse of democracy in the Weimar Republic. While this essay is by no means an exhaustive summary of the literature on Weimar Germany, readers will gain a greater appreciation for the wide variety of opinions on the failure of democracy to thrive in post-World War I Germany. For those readers seeking a comprehensive overview of the Weimar period, an excellent start is Richard Evans’ The Coming of the Third Reich, while works by Eberhard Kolb and Ruth B. Henig contain historiographical essays for those seeking greater depth in the historiography of Weimar Germany. Readers interested in the cultural history of Weimar would be well advised to start with Walter Lacqueur’s Weimar: A Cultural History, 1918-1933 and Alex de Jonge’s Weimar Chronicle: Prelude to Hitler.

In one sense the Nazis themselves served as the first interpreters of the legacy of Weimar Germany, as marked by the fascist propaganda efforts during the elections of the 1930s and in the years following Hitler’s ascension to the positions of Reichskanzler and F├╝hrer. The Weimar Republic, declared the Nazis, was an alien “system” foisted on an unwilling German population by the so-called "November criminals.” The NSDAP made significant use of the Dolchsto├člegende, or “stab-in-the-back legend,” which was based upon the myth that Jews and Marxists instigated strikes among workers in key industries that deprived German soldiers of necessary supplies, and which supposedly caused Germany to lose the First World War via this internal decay. Moreover, Nazi propaganda created a mythology that these same Jews and “cultural Bolsheviks” ruled over Germany during the country’s “time of struggle” (i.e., Weimar), and that only National Socialism could save Germany from destruction by its purported foes. Thus, historians after the Second World War faced a daunting task of both separating propaganda from fact and overcoming biases honed by the Nazi propaganda machine.

Historians of the Weimar Republic have approached the topic from a variety of perspectives, and one of the few consistent trends that has emerged since the Second World War has been a movement away from single-cause theories of the fall of Weimar democracy toward the general theory of a multiplicity of causative factors. This essay is thus grouped into sections related to political, cultural, and economic contributors to the fall of the Weimar Republic.

Cities of Vesuvius: Social structure; men, women, freedmen, slaves

It has been projected that between 10,000-20,000 people living in Pompeii at time of the eruption.

Hierarchical structure:
Upper strata (citizens: Cives):
Senatorial order
Equestrian orders
Rich freedmen

Property qualifications: 1,000,000 sesterces
Served emperor in offices throughout the empire
Gained wealth from large estates
Position was hereditary.

Equestrians: (Equites)
Provincial Elite Property qualifications: 400,000 sesterces
Served emperor in important posts, e.g. military leadership
Gained wealth from public office/trade/banking
Position was not hereditary.

Were previously slaves given freedom by various means
Gained wealth from trade/wealth/banking/manufacturing/land ownership
Excluded from becoming senators, but could become equestrians.

Lower strata:
Poor free-born citizens
Slaves (Servi) About 40% of population were though to be slaves.
Poor freedmen/poor freeborns who had no power/money. Could be lawyers, doctors, teachers, engineers, etc.; shows that the Romans did not think highly of these positions
Freedmen (Liberti)

Slaves: performed mostly agricultural and manufacturing work. Also served upper class in their homes. Were often from a foreign country defeated in war, or free citizens who sold themselves to pay debts.

Typical role was to perform tasks such as running the household, bringing up children and controlling finances. Women in Pompeii appear to have had as much freedom as women in Rome.
Although could not vote, could make public declarations supporting a particular candidate in an election; this shows that women had a part in public life.
Occupations: tavern owners, working in bakeries, household servants, cooks, cleaners, wet nurses and prostitutes.
Pompeii was a place where “women could own property, do business, pay for construction, hold honorific and cultic office, and go about in public.”


An inscription from the first century AD tells us that ‘ the vestibule, the covered gallery and porticoes made with her own money and dedicated in her own name and the name of her son Marcus Numistrius Fronto, in honor of the goddess CoNCORD & Augustan Piety.

The inscription indicated that Eumachia was using her building program as a means of bolstering (to support) her son’s political candidature. Here we have a example of a rich woman who had an important public role in the priesthood of Venus, using her wealth and social status for political purposes.

The statue of Eumachia found in the collegium building of the fullers, Pompeii. She wears a tunic and stola. The long palla draped over her head represents her respectability and role as a priestess. Inscription under statue: to Eumachia, daughter of Lucius, public priestess: the fullers (set this up).

We know from the information on Eumachia that the priestess was held in high esteem in Roman society.

Patron – client Relationship:

Families and individuals within the upper strata also acted as patrons to those lower in the social order.

It was the responsibility of the client to support his patron at political elections and do any favors that might be required. In return, the patron might assist his client in legal matter or give him a small gift or a free meal.

It was a feature of Roman life that each morning, clients would flock to their patron’s house to pay their respects (salutio).

By the first century AD tradition required that virtually every man of wealth and high status maintain clients who were prepared to serve him all hours of the day.

The client was expected to arrive at the patron’s house for the morning salutio and in return will receive the sportula (food, clothing, money and other favours). He also had to accompany his patron to the forum, support his political goals and vote for him.
Clients were generally plebeians ( common people, low in wealth and status) the poor citizens of low birth and former slaves. However , some plebeians acquired wealth through trade and became patrons in their own rights.

The patron- client relationship between patricians and plebeian classes was important to the Roman way of life because each needed the other.

Monday, August 16, 2010

5 Weeks to go!

THAT'S RIGHT....ONLY 5 WEEKS TO GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Consider it the sprint to the finish. This is the time to put in a really big effort and get on top of your stuff!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Why I love being a teacher!!!

Something interesting to see!

The first emperor
China's entombed warriors

4 December 2010 – 13 March 2011

One of the world’s greatest archaeological discoveries of the 20th century was the discovery of the terracotta army who protected the tomb of China’s first emperor (221–210 BCE). This magnificent exhibition of some 100 objects includes ten of the world-famous life-size warriors from Xi’an: terracotta figures of foot soldiers, generals, kneeling bowmen, cavalry and chariot horses. The works are on loan from institutions in Shaanxi province including the Museum of Terracotta Warriors and Horses of Emperor Qin Shihuang.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Historians love Eyewitness Accounts of things! Just how reliable are they?

The human memory can be impressive, but it is equally prone to letting us down.

Now ground-breaking research has revealed the extent of just how fragile it can be — and how to use it better.

You’re in the pub and trouble starts. There is shouting, someone is stabbed, they die. It happened right in front of your eyes and the police want to speak to you.

But what exactly did you see? It’s long been accepted that eyewitness testimony may not always be as reliable as it seems.

The problem is people simply don’t remember exactly what happened, say psychologists; the mind does not work like a video camera, nowhere in the brain is the perfect memory of everything that has been seen, in the order it happened.

However fallible human memory is, it’s often the only thing police have to go on and eyewitnesses have been responsible for sending people to prison ever since the justice system began — both rightly and wrongly.

Now research has gone further than ever before to understand the fragile nature of our powers of recall.

The project — involving ‘The Open University‘, ‘The BBC‘ and ‘Greater Manchester Police‘ (‘GMP’) — is groundbreaking in several ways; the technology it used is cutting edge, including eye trackers (devices for measuring eye positions and eye movement), but just as unparalleled was the realism involved.

It’s always a big issue with research — how do you accurately test someone’s everyday reactions when they know they are part of an experiment and in controlled conditions? Won’t they try harder to remember details if they know they are doing a memory test?

In this case the important action took place when they were least expecting it. The ten volunteers were put through days of memory tests in a studio and assumed this was the research. In fact, two intricately planned and elaborate mock crimes — a fatal stabbing and an armed robbery — were really what mattered.

On one day the participants went for lunch in a local pub, which was really filled with actors, stuntmen and ten hidden cameras. A fight broke out and someone appeared to be stabbed and killed. The whole scenario unfolded over 20 minutes.

‘It was incredibly realistic,” says Mr.Simon Woodthorpe, 44, a photographers’ agent who was one of the volunteers.

‘We weren’t expecting it at all and only started to get suspicious when the police turned up really quickly. By then it didn’t matter, we’d not suspected it was staged so we hadn’t consciously thought about paying extra attention to all the details.

‘I always thought I had a good memory, but I was yards away from the incident, saw it all unfold and still got the murderer wrong. I said it was the wrong man.’

What was also unprecedented about the project was the access to interviewing techniques used by ‘GMP’. Detectives treated each mock crime as if it were real, interviewing the volunteers, but unlike a real case, the force’s conclusions about what had happened could be checked against what exactly went on. It was a real test of their skill.

During the drama the eye trackers — still being worn by some volunteers during the mock robbery — were able to pinpoint exactly what people were looking at and compared to what they reported. The differences, say those involved, were in some cases staggering.

‘One person thought they hadn’t seen the crime being committed, they were adamant about it’, says Dr Graham Pike, a memory expert involved in the project.

‘When we reviewed the eye tracker we found they’d actually spent almost the entire time looking at it unfold. It was quite amazing’.

What makes the memory this vulnerable is the fact it is malleable and not fixed, says Dr Pike.

‘It’s not like inputting data into a computer; the mind does not store facts absolutely the way they are and it does not recall them absolutely accurately either.’

There are three stages in memory, according to modern psychology. The first is perception, which is what we see — also what we hear, taste, touch and smell. This in itself is a selective process; from the start we can fail to encode detail or simply not notice something, so the information going in isn’t accurate.

Secondly there’s storage. We know we forget things over time, but we also revise our memories and re-write them to fit in with new ideas.

Finally there’s the retrieval stage, where the brain searches out information. When you remember something, lots of different parts of the brain work together and from that emerges the mental representation that is going to be your experience of a memory.

Every time you recall something, you reinterpret it all over again. And in every reconstruction process there are many opportunities for error.

In a crime situation memory is influenced by many factors such as stress, the presence of a weapon and even just the desire to help police solve the crime.

‘Police know how fallible the memory can be,” says Mr.Steve Retford, a former head of the investigative skills unit at ‘GMP’ and now specialist interviewing adviser with the force.

‘They also know this is usually not through mischievousness on the part of the witnesses, but through stress and shock’.

Take the case of Jean Charles de Menezes, shot at Stockwell Tube station in 2005 by police who mistook him for a suicide bomber. Eyewitnesses said he had vaulted a ticket barrier when running away from the police. In fact it was later shown by CCTV that Mr Menezes had walked through the barriers, having picked up a free newspaper, and only ran when he saw his train arriving.

In some cases erroneous eyewitness testimony has led to false imprisonment: in the 1970s, the overturning of several eyewitnesses cases resulted in The Devlin Committee’s investigation of identification evidence.

It found many witnesses overstated their ability to single out the right person. What this latest research has proved is the extent of how fallible the memory can be, which is ‘massively important’, say those involved.

‘That the memory is vulnerable is not new’, says Dr Pike.

‘But it is so important that we know how fallible it is and in what ways.

‘By understanding this better we can design police techniques that make the most of memory’.

For the police, the findings of the project are essential because eyewitnesses are still at the heart of most investigations – even with the growth of CCTV.

‘Eyewitnesses are our lifeblood and without them you are usually stuffed’, says Mr Retford.

‘Creating the right environment and using the correct psychological tools to get accurate evidence is vital; you have to be “on top of your game” and really “empty the head” of all the detail you need’.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

HEX Exam Results will be given back on Monday

Gabrielle is absolutely right! You should celebrate the end of exams. I will give back your results on Monday.

Monday, August 9, 2010

HEX Results

Research Project results have been emailed!

HEX Exam results will be emailed by Friday.

If you haven't received them by Saturday email me.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

From Bek

Hi Sir!

When I was at school in England we learnt about what was going on in Burma with Aung San Suu Kye and the minority group of Karen people. Here just a little clip that briefly explains the situation there. When I found about these atrocities I wanted to know what I could do about it. Amnesty International has a new campaign to urge the release of Burmese political prisoners and I thought the blog might be a good way to raise awareness and action. Here's is something very small that might be a way that we can do something about it.


How good is Photoshop!!!

Would you buy a used car from this man?

Not everyone would see the appeal in spending several million dollars on a car that may or may not have been ridden in by someone who never had a driving licence. Even if said person was a self-proclaimed car enthusiast, and was instrumental in putting the automobile within reach of the common man.

Plenty of people would actually be discouraged to learn that their used car had originally been delivered in 1935 to an A. Hitler of Berlin.

There again, it seems plenty of others wouldn’t.

Last November, Dusseldorf classic-car collector and dealer Michael Froehlich spouted that he had “tracked down” a 1935 Mercedes-Benz 770K (kompressor) Grosser limousine that had been used by Adolf Hitler.

In fact, it was one of a group of six similar 770 models – four of them also former Nazi state cars – that Froehlich had located at the request of a mystery Russian billionaire buyer.

The Russian was said to be paying a sum well into eight figures for the six cars, owned by a collector in Bielefeld, Germany. The blue-black, open-roofed ‘Hitler’ car, which is fully armoured, weighs about five tonnes and carries the registration 1A 148 461, might itself be worth $10m.

Nasty Nazis or not, the Mercedes-Benz 770 was one of the world’s most significant cars during a 13-year production run that began with its launch at the 1930 Paris motor show. The production comprised Series 1 (W07) and the 1938 Series 2 (W150), which brought a new chassis and coil-spring suspension. Only 117 Series 1 and 88 Series 2 cars were built.

The Grosser was suitably imposing, on a 3.75m wheelbase and weighing close to three tonnes, depending on coachwork. Power came from a 7.7-litre straight-eight engine driving through a four-speed Maybach gearbox.

In standard guise, the ohv engine developed around 110kW. All but 13 examples, however, were fitted with the optional, clutch-actuated Roots supercharger that lifted power to 150kW in the Series 1 and 171kW in the re-tuned Series 2 (which also gained a five-speed ’box). Thankfully, the enormous hydraulic drum brakes were vacuum-boosted.

What truly distinguished the 770 Grosser was its customers. Along with the top-ranking Nazi officials, these included exiled German emperor Kaiser Wilhelm II (who had a grey cabriolet), Japanese emperor Hirohito (red limousine) and Finnish president Baron Gustav von Mannerheim, who took delivery of a black cabriolet in 1941.

Mannerheim’s four-tonne example was armoured with 3mm-thick body panels, a 6mm floor and 40mm bulletproof windows. Its fuel consumption of 27L/100km necessitated a 197-litre tank. This car’s 1948 shipment to the US and starring role in the 1951 film The Desert Fox: The Story of Rommel often had it mistakenly branded as ‘Hitler’s Mercedes’.

For six years, it sat alongside the blue-black sister car 1A 148 461 in the collection of Arizona developer (and Barrett-Jackson auction co-founder), Tom Barrett. When auctioned in 1972, the Mannerheim car fetched a then-record US$176,000 and the ‘Hitler’ car US$93,000.

The latter hardly needed to be tracked down: for several years it was owned by colourful Las Vegas businessman, Ralph Engelstad. In a room at his Imperial Palace casino, Engelstad displayed the 770K among a collection of Nazi staff cars and memorabilia, and his-’n’-his paintings of himself and Hitler in full Nazi uniforms. The car was eventually sold to the German after Engelstad’s death in 2002.

Car dealer Froehlich, 50, is one who doesn’t get Engelstad’s humour. “I was of two minds about tracking down the car of this shit Hitler,” he bluntly told Germany’s Der Spiegel. “The vehicle disgusts me, I have to say.”

Others were more sceptical than disgusted. Within days of Froehlich’s ‘find’ being reported, Mercedes-Benz factory historian Josef Ernst keenly refuted that 1A 148 461 was anything special. The Chancellery at that time, he explained, simply bought and maintained a fleet of cars. “Who drove in what and when, is practically impossible to determine,” he said.

“There is no such thing as Hitler’s own car.”

Would you buy a used car from this man?

Friday, August 6, 2010


Today, sixty-five years after dropping an atomic bomb on Hiroshima and killing more than 140,000 people, the United States sent its first ever delegation to a ceremony commemorating the attack.

Today, U.S. Ambassador John Roos joined representatives from 75 countries at the Hiroshima event, but he wasn't asked to speak. World War II allies France and Britain also sent delegations to the ceremony for the first time.

The memorial event today featured a minute of silence and the release of 1,000 white doves. The thousands of Japanese who survived the attack, but spent the rest of their lives suffering the affect-effects of injuries, illness and grief, were honored.

On a previous visit to the city, Ambassador Roos wnet to the Hiroshima Peace Museum and left a note in the guestbook that read: "A visit to Hiroshima is a powerful reminder of the destructiveness of nuclear weapons, and underscores the importance of working together to seek the peace and security of a world without them."

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon visited the Atomic Bomb Museum in Nagasaki yesterday, a first by a U.N. chief. More than 70,000 people died when the U.S. bombed the southern Japanese city on Aug. 9, 1945. Six days later, Japan surrendered and the war ended.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Well done HEX people!!!

I was well pleased with your answers in the HEX exam! Nobody spectacularly good yet, but nobody spectacularly bad... which is even better! I don't want anyone peaking too early!!! Most people did much better on the Jesus question (Is this a miracle??) than the Historiography question, which is a bit weird. But well done anyway!!! I will be emailing your exam & project marks soon... if you want them? If you don't (which is a bit silly) just let me know and I will give them to you in a lead box when you get back.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Just for fun Tudor Quiz!

1. Which Tudor couple is said to feature in the children's nursery rhyme Sing a Song of Sixpence?

(a) Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn
(b) Mary Tudor and Philip II of Spain
(c) Henry VII and Elizabeth of York
(d) Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon

2. The rebellion of Thomas Wyatt during Mary I's reign led to the execution of which rival claimant to the throne?

(a) Edward Courtenay
(b) Margaret Pole
(c) Lady Jane Grey
(d) Mary Stuart

3. Which of Henry VIII's queens wrote The Lamentations of a Sinner?

(a) Katherine Parr
(b) Katherine of Aragon
(c) Anne of Cleves
(d) Katherine Howard

4. To which of the Tudors was the renowned English scholar, Roger Ascham, referring when he wrote in admiration that they "readeth here now at Windsor more Greek every day than some prebendary of this church doth read Latin in a whole week"?

(a) Henry VIII
(b) Mary I
(c) Edward VI
(d) Elizabeth I

5. At which royal palace did Elizabeth I contract, and almost die from, smallpox in 1562?

(a) Hampton Court Palace
(b) Windsor Castle
(c) Richmond Palace
(d) Nonsuch Palace

6. Which lady-in-waiting did Elizabeth I refer to as 'that She-Wolf'?

(a) Bess Throckmorton
(b) Lettice Knollys
(c) Bess of Hardwick
(d) Mary Fitton

7. One of Elizabeth I's most cherished possessions was a locket ring.  Whose portrait did it contain, along with her own?

(a) Sir Walter Ralegh
(b) Mary I
(c) Anne Boleyn
(d) Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester