Werkbundpolitik and Weltpolitik: The German State's Interest in Global Commerce and "Good Design," 1912-1914"

in German Politics and Society
View More View Less
Restricted access

Although the conflict between Muthesius and van de Velde has been well documented in the annals of modern architectural and design history, far less understood is the extent to which domestic political crises and new policy departures in Berlin served as preconditions for the Werkbund conflict in the first place. Prominent Werkbund members—men such as Werkbund Managing Director Ernst Jäckh and Werkbund Vice President Hermann Muthesius, but also including such national political figures and Werkbund members as Friedrich Naumann of Württemberg and Gustav Stresemann of Saxony—used institutional affiliations and their multiple professional identities to forge unprecedented linkages between the Werkbund leadership, industrial interest groups, and powerful German state interests. Specifically, and at the national level, new policies articulated by German Chancellor Theobald von Bethmann Hollweg and key German ministries in Berlin, strident national interest group politics, and an evolving state outlook toward Weltpolitik (geopolitical strategy) combined to reshape Werkbund policy in fundamental ways between 1912 and 1914. Without these forces, and without developments that followed the lopsided and highly contentious Reichstag elections of January 1912, the Werkbund likely never would have risen to the prominent position it came to occupy with state authorities by July 1914.

Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 24 24 1
Full Text Views 11 11 0
PDF Downloads 10 10 0