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From General Estate to Special Interest
German Lawyers 1878–1933


  • Date Published: November 2006
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521030205

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About the Authors
  • The history of German lawyers in private practice from 1878 to 1933 helps answer questions about the inability of German liberalism to withstand National Socialism in 1933. Lawyers connect the procedural focus of legal thinking with procedural notions of individual liberties. In Germany they won free entry and self-government for their profession in 1878, thinking that these changes would lead to civic leadership and expanded liberty, but the forces that were unleashed revealed internal tensions and the limits of professional influence. Exaggerated expectations for the legal profession in public life exposed the limitations of procedural liberalism, with tragic consequences for Germany.

    • A detailed social history of lawyers in Germany
    • Unites historical literatures on history of the professions, the middle class and Liberalism
    • Recaptures law and legal thinking as an object of research for the social historian
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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2006
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521030205
    • length: 392 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 x 23 mm
    • weight: 0.601kg
    • contains: 5 b/w illus. 32 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of illustrations
    Hierarchy of courts
    Glossary of legal and other terms
    1. The archimedean point: lawyers, liberalism, and the middle-class project
    2. Freie advokatur: the blending of the middle-class and professional projects
    3. Foundation of the modern profession: the private bar under the lawyer's statute
    4. Institutional framework: lawyers and Honoratiorenpolitik
    5. Growth and diversification: lawyers in the province of Hannover, 1878–1933
    6. Elites and professional ideology: self-discipline and self-administration by the Anwaltskammer Celle
    7. Simultaneous admission: the limits of Honoratiorenpolitik
    8. The limits of economic Liberalism: freie advokatur or numerus clausus?
    9. The limits of political Liberalism: lawyers and the Weimar state
    10. Conclusion: lawyers and the limits of Liberalism
    Methodological appendix

  • Author

    Kenneth F. Ledford, Case Western Reserve University, Ohio

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