The Nazi propaganda succeeded in using modern and pioneering techniques: simple messages which were capable of endear and emotionally reach out to the masses, together with extraordinarily strong and straightforward images.
“It is not propaganda’s task to be intelligent, it’s task is to lead to success”
The 1933 is the turning point year for Germany and for the whole world: Hitler becomes chancellor and Goebbels becomes minister of the popular education and the Propaganda. He was the one who quickly managed to control every cultural area and the media, included radio and films.
The new Nazi system clearly aimed at a systematic and continuous control of all the press employees and Goebbels, the so-called “dictator of the Third Reich’s culture”, was the author of the “arianization” of culture. This is another valuable explanation for the exile of geniuses like A.Einstein, S.Freud, B.Brecht, M.Dietrich, T.Mann.
Even before Hollywood, Goebbels got a 3D film done, he understood and cleverly directed the audience’s interest, he controlled the screenplays, chose the topics, ways and times of expression, he took care of the newsreels personally, before and during the war.
It’s upsetting to think that the fundamental principles of Goebbels ’propaganda and the entire apparatus’ propaganda are still used today, in democracy, in marketing and in political propaganda.
Here some of the pillars of the Nazi propaganda:
- Identifying only one message to communicate, only one symbol, only one enemy responsible for all the wrongs that has happened.
- Transferring onto the enemy his/her own errors and flaws and make up fake news to distract people from the bad news which Nazis were unable to deny.
- The propaganda must be popular, directed to the least intelligent of all the individuals to which the propaganda talks to.
- Everythig must be based on few ideas tirelessly repeated, they have to be presented from different points of view, without any doubt and uncertainty.
“Repeat a lie a hundred, a thousand, a million of times and it will become a truth”
- Make believe that the ideas expressed are shared by everyone (principle of humanity)
“It’s not enough to peacefully submit the masses to our system, leading them to a neutral position towards the system. We want to operate so that they depend on us as a drug”.
Obviously, the defeat endured at the end of WWI and the great politic instability of the 20’s created the perfect foundation to build Adolf Hitler’s “character”, Germany’s father, messiah and Soldier ready to fight at the same time. His popularity increased day by day thanks to his flawlessly written and tirelessly repeated speeches, continuously pronounced in parades, rallies and radio broadcasting.
A large number of artists drew portraits, posters, busts, Fuhrer’s images, who became an actual mass-phenomenon created and cultivated by the party’s leaders. All replicated in an enormous amount and distributed in public areas and delivered door to door.
The publishing house of the Nazi party printed thousands of copies of Hitler’s political autobiography, Mein Kampf (My Battle), in special editions, for newly married couples and in Braille copies for blind people, too.
Teachers praised the Nordic “aryan” race, the love for Hitler, the obedience to the State, militarism, racism, while German kids studied on textbooks that talked about other kids’ exciting first time with the Fuhrer, they also played with racial-ideology and militaristic-culture themed toys.
It created an actual poisonous spiral, in which the propaganda attacked with all kinds of means every German citizen, and the majority of them answered with a strengthening of the propaganda itself. Nazism became a mass culture.