By Nadine Rossol (auth.)
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Additional resources for Performing the Nation in Interwar Germany: Sport, Spectacle and Political Symbolism, 1926–36
The postcard for its Constitution Day festivities in 1928, inviting all republicans to join, showed the Paulskirche—the location of Germany’s ﬁrst parliament in 1848—and a republican ﬂag in front of it. The displayed republican symbols could be easily connected to Frankfurt’s past and to the republican present. After all, the Paulskirche was still there, and so were black-red-gold ﬂags as the national ﬂag of the Weimar Republic. The symbolic language of the postcard combined two objects that possessed unambiguous potential of identiﬁcation.
93 The Reichsbanner and the police parades, although both organisations were not centrally controlled by the Berlin government, came to represent the Weimar state at festive occasions in the German capital. Consequently, discussions on the outer appearance of police and Reichsbanner parades, including praise and criticism alike, were always discussions on how the young republic should be presented to its citizens. 1 The reasons for this enthusiasm have been interpreted differently. It is sometimes regarded as a continuation of playing war by different means with its focus on physical strength, competition, struggle and victory.
The groups close to the designated city were expected to participate to guarantee a big enough turn out. For festivities in Leipzig in 1927, local groups of the areas in central Germany had to participate. 73 The Reichsbanner suggested to its members to stay after the celebrations and visit the city. 74 The Reichsbanner also formulated demands for the urban population. Republican newspapers reminded readers that the decoration of the house or apartment with republican ﬂags belonged to the duties of the citizens to welcome the Reichsbanner members.