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From Empire to Republic

 | 
Peter Berger
, 
Günter Bischof
, 
Fritz Plasser

I. End of Empire/Early Republic: Political (Domestic and Foreign) Legacies

Dismantling Empire: Ignaz Seipel and Austria's Financial Crisis, 1922-1925

John Deak

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The German-Austrian Republic was proclaimed on the steps of the Vienna Parliament building on 12 November 1918. The Allied Powers, through the Treaty of Saint-Germain, had carved Austria out of the Habsburg Empire’s hereditary lands following the First World War. The internal contours of the new Austrian Republic, however, would take shape over the next few years as Austria’s leadership, its political parties, and its citizens responded to the new republic’s smallness, its reduced economic base, and its new geopolitical position in Central Europe. It is the argument of this paper that Austria’s financial crisis and subsequent bailout by the League of Nations in the early 1920s was crucial in Austria’s transition from the core lands of an empire to a republic. It was largely a result of the financial crisis, and the response to it by Ignaz Seipel’s government between 1922 and 1925 that the administrative structures of the Habsburg Empire were finally dismantled, clearing the path for...

© innsbruck university press, 2010

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