BOLDYREV R.Yu., MORRÉ J. Organizational Structure, Channels and Methods of Propaganda Work of the Soviet Military Administration in Germany, 1945–1949

DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/jvolsu4.2019.5.15

Roman Yu. Boldyrev

Candidate of Sciences (History), Associate Professor,

Department of World History, Northern (Arctic) Federal University named after M.V. Lomonosov,

Severnoy Dviny Emb., 17, 163002 Arkhangelsk, Russian Federation

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4262-7285

Jörg Morré

Doctor of History, Direktor,

German-Russian Museum,

Zwieseler Straße, 4, D-10318 Berlin, Germany

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https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1579-6147


Abstract. Introduction. The paper deals with the issues of the propaganda system in the Soviet Occupation Zone in Germany (SOZ) between 1945 and 1949. Based on de-classified documents from Russian Archives propaganda organization, channels and methods of propaganda units of the Soviet Military Administration in Germany (SMAG) became a subject to study. The authors emphasize on control means towards German mass media and implementing the Soviet propaganda monopoly in East Germany.

Methods and materials. The authors consequently analyze the main channels and methods of positive USSR image broadcasting: radio, press, SMAG propaganda unit lectures, people’s education system, activities of society for Soviet cultural studies, acquaintance trips of German delegations to the USSR, presentations of Soviet exhibitions and films.

Analysis and Results. The authors come to a conclusion that the Soviet propaganda in East Germany had a low efficiency. It failed to establish a complete monopoly of Soviet propaganda units in East Germany. The SOZ population could access the propaganda from West Germany and West Berlin, which broadcast a radically negative image of the USSR. Besides, the units and institutions of the Group of Soviet Occupation Troops in Germany (GSOTG) created their own image of Soviet people, which was different from the ideal and broadcast one. Thus, it turned out to be impossible to provide the unification of the broadcast and perception of propagandist materials devoted to the USSR and its population. Soviet propaganda in Germany had gone through the transition by the late 1940s: division of Germany in two states appeared to be a reality, and the establishment of socialist society on Stalin’s model took place in East Germany. Ideological revisiting of the Soviet social constitution, and so its supremacy over the bourgeois one was to replace the conventional image of the country of total welfare and happiness.

Key words: Soviet occupation policy in Germany, Soviet Occupation Zone, Soviet propaganda, image of the USSR.

Citation. Boldyrev R.Yu., Morré J. Organizational Structure, Channels and Methods of Propaganda Work of the Soviet Military Administration in Germany, 1945–1949. Vestnik Volgogradskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Seriya 4. Istoriya. Regionovedenie. Mezhdunarodnye otnosheniya [Science Journal of Volgograd State University. History. Area Studies. International Relations], 2019, vol. 24, no. 5, pp. 205-221. (in Russian). DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/jvolsu4.2019.5.15.

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Organizational Structure, Channels and Methods of Propaganda Work of the Soviet Military Administration in Germany, 1945–1949 by Boldyrev R.Yu., Morré J. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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