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After succeeding power in Germany and establishing a one-party dictatorship, the Nazi party orchestrated a huge propaganda campaign that won the loyalty and cooperation of the German population. Even before rising to power, Adolf Hitler indicated an interest in the use of propaganda. In his book “Mein Kampf” written whilst in jail, Hitler hinted at the use of propaganda to indoctrinate a society through the quote “Propaganda tries to force a doctrine on the whole people… Propaganda works on the general public from the standpoint of an idea and makes them ripe for the victory of this idea.”. Directed by Dr. Joseph Goebbels, every media outlet in Germany was quickly overtaken by the Nazis in order to control the German people through film, newspapers, and tv. However, arguably the most effective method of propaganda used by the Nazis was the usage of propaganda posters that were present everywhere around the country, designed to catch the attention of everyone. People became so used to these images displayed everywhere.
For this project, I have extensively researched a range of propaganda posters dating from this period on history from 1933-45. I have also watched documentaries from credible sources such as the BBC about the creation of propaganda and the effects this media had on the German people. I also used websites such as the US Holocaust memorial museum to find a range of important facts and images.
From the start of his career in the Nazi Party, Adolf Hitler frequently expressed his hatred towards Jews through his theory that Jews were to blame for all of Germany’s economic and moral issues. When the Nazis came to power in 1933, an integral part of their campaign was to highlight the stab in the back myth by saying the Weimar Republic had been betrayed by “14 years of rule by Jews, Marxists, and cultural Bolsheviks.” This was then illustrated in their propaganda against the Jews, which includes depictions of Jews as evil furthering the idea that the Jewish population of Germany was responsible. Also, through the posters, the Nazis exploited pre-existing images of Jews and stereotypes which portrayed Jews as an “alien race.” This offensive image became an image supported by the state which eventually led to a hatred towards Jews from the population of Germany. This, arguably led to the lack of acknowledgment of the atrocities in the concentration camps in the “final solution” as the Germans could not see the issues because they believed what they were being told about the Jews and that they were evil.
The text in this first poster can be translated to “he is responsible for the war.” The poster also illustrates the stereotypical image of a Jew at the time wearing David’s star that they were forced to wear after the introduction of the Nuremberg laws in 1935. Therefore, the Jews were not only blamed for the failure in the war but also even the war occurring in the first place. The clothing he is wearing also makes him appear wealthy as it is typically associated with a banker furthering the ideals that Hitler was insinuating as the Jews were seemingly unaffected by the Great Depression as much of Germany was. believe Jews were the reason for economic failure in Germany like the Nazis wanted.
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