This text charts the life span of the Austrofascist state that bracketed the critical phase of Hitler's ascendancy – from his ascent to chancellery in 1933 until the final stage of his pan-Germanism project, the annexation of Austria to the German Reich. In an effort to provide a wider background to the Austrian case, it seeks to grow beyond the most obvious and pervasive factor of Hitler's connection to Austria, and to establish Austria's alternative critical paradigms during this period, the dynamics of which intersected with processes and events occurring elsewhere in Europe. Specifically, the research question concerns discerning whether the Austrian regime was authoritarian or fascist. The solution is contingent upon appraising contemporary European political ideas and their dynamics within the Austrian realm. It also requires comprehending nationalism, a commonality between authoritarianism and fascism, in the context of practices and beliefs in Europe from the mid-nineteenth century until the inter-war period.
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