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Black ViennaThe Radical Right in the Red City, 1918-1938$
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Janek Wasserman

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780801452871

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801452871.001.0001

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The Spannkreis and the Battle for Hegemony in Central Europe

The Spannkreis and the Battle for Hegemony in Central Europe

(p.74) Chapter 3 The Spannkreis and the Battle for Hegemony in Central Europe
Black Vienna

Janek Wasserman

Cornell University Press

This chapter explores the popularity of authoritarian and fascist ideas in Central Europe through an investigation of the one of the most influential Black Viennese circles, the Spannkreis, centered on the sociologist and philosopher Othmar Spann. Spann's holistic ideology enjoyed widespread academic support in Austria, the Sudetenland, and parts of Germany. Never content with mere academic influence, Spann curried favor with radical political movements, including the Austrian Heimwehr, the Italian Fascists, and the Nazi Party. The robustness of Spann's connections—both intellectual and political—demonstrates the close interaction between science and politics in interwar Central Europe. It also shows the relative unity of Viennese conservatives in a common front against Red Vienna.

Keywords:   Black Vienna, Spannkreis, Othmar Spann, interwar Vienna, fascism, authoritarianism, Central Europe, Viennese conservatives

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