Hitler’s propaganda: the cult of leader. Reading internal clues. KS3 & 4 Smart Task

The aim of this short task is to encourage students to look really closely at images for what is there, not what they think should be there.

Students are asked to consider how they might expect Hitler to be portrayed on a propaganda poster. They are given 4 ideas (slide 2) with which they have to agree or disagree. These lead students to think in a particular way. They are then shown a typical photo of him (slide 3) and they concur that this is indeed what they had in mind. This now creates the surprise element as they are shown a poster (slide 4) showing him looking more relaxed, almost informal stripped of his medals, belt, fancy adornments and even the swastika is barely visible.  Students are asked to speculate why this might be. Use slide 5 to explain the caption and to stress the volkisch nature of Hitler’s appeal.  He is clearly looking to the future with confidence but he is taking them there as one of them in his plain apparel.

Use slide 6 to go over the provenance of the image and reinforce how frequently Hitler used the phrase with slide 7.

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