Demian Historical Context

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Germany: 1871-1918

Demian is set in Germany, beginning approximately ten years before the start of World War I. The period of German history from 1871 to 1918 is known as the era of the German Empire. The German Empire was formed in 1871 from the combination of Prussia and three other German states. The government was ruled by an emperor, but also had a constitution and an elected legislative body. In Demian, Sinclair's school years are set during the reign of the emperor (also called the Kaiser) William II, which lasted from 1888 (when Hesse was ten or eleven years old) until the end of World War I (1918). William II also served as king of Prussia (the largest of Germany's five states).

Germany in the Post-War Years

German soldiers returning from a war in which they were defeated came home to find widespread hunger, high unemployment rates, and outrageous rates of inflation...

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This section contains 583 words
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