Limited access Past event

Applied Microeconomics Group Seminar Creating Expectations: Propaganda and the Economic Recovery in Nazi Germany

Speaker: Dr Andrea Papadia, University of York

Abstract: Propaganda was used extensively by the Nazi regime in Germany to pursue its political goals. An important part of the content of propaganda was economic in nature, especially in the early years of the regime. Using a plausibly exogenous component of propaganda driven by the strength of the radio signal across Germany, we investigate the economic effects of propaganda. We find that localities with a stronger exposure to the radio had a substantially faster recovery from the Great Depression, as captured by the reduction in local unemployment. We also find that propaganda was complementary to other Nazi policies, particularly rearmament. Relying on an analysis of the content of propaganda and recent macroeconomic theory, we argue that propaganda works by creating confidence.

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