Mannheim’s last year at Heidelberg was fateful in the history of the Republic. At the very end of 1929, after the onset of the Great Depression, the National Socialists, building on their participation in the campaign to repudiate the Young Plan, made an electoral breakthrough in Thüringen. A similar electoral success occurred in November, 1929 municipal elections in Frankfurt, where the party collected 10 percent of the vote (Hamilton 1982: 200). These regional shocks assumed more national proportions as the NSDAP began what would be more than three years of continual campaigning, highlighted by street marches, assembly room brawls, and furious drive-throughs in open trucks. They were a raging presence. In March, 1930, the month before Mannheim assumed his chair in the newly reorganized Social Science Faculty at the Johann-Wolfgang-Goethe University in Frankfurt, the parliamentary coalition supporting the Social Democratic Chancellor split fatally over the issue of unemployment insurance, 1 and the Republic entered a period of parliamentary gridlock. Increasing numbers of academic republicans, including Alfred Weber, talked of a retreat from the parliamentary system (Döring 1975: 99). In a 1931 pamphlet entitled The End of Democracy? Weber lamented that the National Socialists were better equipped to deal with the new reality than were the democratic parties, because they had developed a new vision and a new elan (Weber 1931: 7). In elections not long after Mannheim finished his lecture series, the NSDAP became the second largest party in the Parliament and the KPD the third largest. Both of 178these parties were openly opposed to the Republic as a parliamentary government, and it was the shared awareness of their rise, above all, that Mannheim presupposed in his discussions of fascism and Marxism in the 1930 lectures. Thus Mannheim moved to the modernist city of Frankfurt just when what has been called the “crisis of classical modernity” was beginning its most desperate phase.