In 1923, German democracy faced crisis and near destruction. In this remarkable year in modern European history, France and Belgium militarily occupied Germany’s economic heartland, the Ruhr, triggering a series of crises that almost spiralled out of control. Drawing on previously unseen sources, in 1923 Mark Jones weaves together a thrilling and resonant narrative of German lives in this turbulent time. Tracing Hitler’s rise, he shows how political pragmatism and international cooperation eventually steered the nation away from total insurrection, and illustrates how the warnings of 1923 – a rise of nationalist rhetoric, fragile European consensus, and underestimation of the enemies of liberalism – became only too apparent a decade later when Weimar democracy eventually succumbed to tyranny. Jones is assistant professor in history at University College Dublin. He talks to Georgina Godwin, journalist and Books Editor for Monocle 24.