943 - Geschichte Deutschlands (General history of Europe Central Europe Germany)
In: Vierteljahrschrift für Sozial- und Wirtschaftsgeschichte. Stuttgart : Steiner. 89.2002, H. 4, S. 400-426.
The eighteen-eighties under Chancellor Otto von Bismarck saw the establishment of statutory workers' insurance in Germany. Germany remained backwards, however, in the statutory protection of workers at their workplace, the prevention of dangers arising from industrial work, and the limitation of hours of work for children, young persons, women or even workers in general. The protection of young workers, for example, remained until 1891 as it had been in 1853. That was due to the fundamental refusal of all improvments in matters of regulations for the protection of workers on the part of Bismarck, who blocked all relevant initiatives. Along with other sources this article draws on previously rarely used marginalia of Bismarck's in ministerial documents on factory inspection, children's and women's labour, the prohibition of Sunday work, and the introduction of a standard working day. The investigation deals with the Chancellor's motives and the arguments deployed in his prevention of measures of workers' protection, which he called an infringement of workers' freedom of action.