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Hitler’s propaganda and terror in the period from 1933-1939 Essay Sample

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Hitler’s propaganda and terror in the period from 1933-1939 Essay Sample

Adolph Hitler became Chancellor of Germany in January 1933 and his power depended upon propaganda for the Nazi’s and terror. This essay will attempt to show how the Nazis used fear and propaganda to sustain power during the 1930s.

Once Hitler became Chancellor he set out to establish a one-party state using the legal means available to him as chancellor. By doing so this meant that he had no opposing parties against him and he could rule with total control.

On March 23, 1933 Hitler introduced the Enabling Act ‘Law for removing distress of the people and the Reich’, which meant that Hitler transferred all legislative powers to his government, which made him the dictatorial ruler of Germany and provided the basis for further illegal measures.

Hitler wanted to turn German people into the ‘master race’ which meant eradicating Germany of any thing or one that might hold her down. Hitler held many rallies designed and organised by Albert Speer and Joseph Goebbels. Hitler used these rallies to dictate his anti-sematic ideas on the German people and also used propaganda to spread nazi ideology among the people.

Much of Hitler’s power came from the succession of his speeches from 1933 to 1938. Hitler made great efforts to socialise the German people. By organising them collectively he would be able to stamp out individualism that posed a threat to the Nazi ideology. Terror and coercion played their part in Hitler’s power.

Hitler’s use of terror was masterly. He applied the right measure of intimidation without driving the Germans to desperate opposition, or without diverting their attention from the positive things of the regime.

First Hitler created fear by wild threats, then he applied sever terror measures on Germany as Nazi stormtroopers arrested and imprisoned all those who posed any opposition to the nazi dictatorship, then came the transition to near normalcy but with terror always held in the background.

Just as effective was the imposition of conformity. In March 1933 Joseph Goebbels was appointed head of a newly created Ministry of Popular Enlightment and Propaganda with the responsibility for ‘all tasks of spiritual direction of the nation’, literature, art, the press, the wireless, the film industry and government propaganda. One historian, George Reuth wrote that,

‘Officially the new ministry was intended to promote enlightment and propaganda among the populace as to the policies of the Reich government and the national reconstruction of the German fatherland. The actual purpose was to set in motion a mental mobilisation of the masses, to work on them until the people could no longer resist them.’

One of Goebbels first jobs was to organise the burning of ‘un-German’ books, which were tossed into a bonfire outside Berlin University on the 10th of May 1933. Newspaper criticism of the government was banned. Hitler wanted total control of everything and the German people were scared that if they didn’t follow the Nazi ideology they would be imprisoned.

In regards to education non-Aryans were dismissed from their teaching positions in April 1934 and textbooks were ‘nazified’.

As mentioned before Hitler used massed rallies designed by Albert Speer to spread Nazi propaganda among the people. Thousands attended these mass rallies. Hitler’s speeches at such events mixed an appeal to patriotism with ranting condemnations of Jews and Bolsheviks. Hitler’s speeches had an almost hypnotic effect on the German people and thus added to Hitler’s influence and power.

The nazis were the first to use the radio and cinema to spread propaganda and Hitler realised this was a valuable source to spread his influence through out the nation. German families were listening to nazi broadcastings every day and Hitler enforced severe penalties for anyone caught listening to foreign radio broadcasts. With the German people having Nazi propaganda shoved in their faces everyday and the fear that if they did not abide by Hitler’s ideology they would be imprisoned and it is inevitable to say that propaganda and terror played a large part in Hitler’s power.

In conclusion it can be said that Hitler’s power depended upon the use of propaganda and terror in the period from 1933-1939 and this is made evident through the mass rallies organised by the nazi’s, the imprisonment of any persons opposed to the Nazi party, the nazified education and the work of Joseph Goebbels, Albert Speer and the nazi party.

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