Background: This article outlines the organization of the Nazi
Party’s propaganda central office. Goebbels was simultaneously head of
the government’s Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, housed
in Berlin, and of the Reichspropagandaleitung, based in Munich.
The RPL played second fiddle to the government’s ministry.
The source: “Die Reichspropagandaleitung der NSDAP.,”
Unser Wille und Weg, 6 (1936), pp. 6-10.
The Central Party Propaganda
Office of the NSDAP
The propaganda of the NSDAP, its subsidiaries and affiliated organizations
is the responsibility of the Reichspropagandaleiter, given the
authority as a Reichsleiter by the Führer for all propaganda. He
is responsible for the entire public work of the movement, including its
subsidiaries and affiliated organizations in the German Reich, including
the carrying out of the Führer’s will on the part of the party apparatus
and its subsidiaries and affiliated organizations. He is also responsible
for the whole German radio system’s organizational, cultural, and economic
development, for the spreading of the National Socialist worldview to
the entire German people, and for explaining the accomplishments of the
party and the state.
The press and film are at his disposal in securing these aims.
To ensure the systematic coordination of the entire propaganda apparatus,
he is at the top of an organization that reaches down to the smallest
local office, and is organized as follows:
Reichspropaganda-Leitung = RPL
Gaupropaganda-Leitung = GPL
Kreispropaganda-Leitung = KPL
Ortsgruppenpropaganda-Leitung = OGPL
Stützpunktpropaganda-Leitung = StPL
The seat of the Reichspropagandaleitung is in Munich.
The Reichspropagandaleitung is headed by Reichspropagandaleiter
Minister Dr. Goebbels.
His closest assistant is the Deputy Reichspropagandaleiter,
who is also chief of staff of the RPL and the personal aide of the Reichspropagandaleiter.
There are five divisions of the Reichspropagandaleitung:
1. Active Propaganda
Department of Active Propaganda
Active Propaganda has the task of carrying out propaganda actions at
every level, from the mass events with their architectonic structure to
the conduct of membership meetings at the local group or section level.
This requires organizing the entire speaker system of the party, its subsidiaries,
and affiliated organizations. Along with handling the daily questions
of politics, it provides the entire speaker system with information and
sends all propagandists in the country the monthly Unser Wille und
Weg. The speaker system also requires the production and distribution
of appropriate posters and leaflets, as well as the careful examination
of meeting reports from the speakers and propaganda offices.
A comprehensive picture of propaganda results from the statistical summary
of all reports from the counties and Gaue.
The Department of Active Propaganda has two main divisions:
1. The Speaker System,
2. Major Events with architectonic elements.
There are also departments for Unser Wille und Weg, publications,
statistics and promotion, and contemporary affairs.
Office of the Speaker System
The office of the speaker system includes the office for “Speaker
Organization,” which supervises all Reich, Gau, and county
speakers of the NSDAP, as well as all expert speakers of the subsidiaries
and affiliated organizations. The office of “Speaker Information”
provides speakers at every level with the only official speaker and information
material of the party.
The assignment of Reich speakers, shock speakers of the RPL, and applicants
for the shock troop is handled by the office of “Speaker Assignments.”
The office of “Speaker Education” is responsible not only for
the training of new political and expert speakers, but also for steady
improvement in the knowledge of all active speakers. A special “National
Speaker School” serves this goal.
Office of Major Events
The Office of Major Events has two main areas of responsibility. The
first is includes all preparations for mass meetings, the second architectonic
preparations. That includes all departments necessary for the conduct
of a major event, including traffic, housing, transportation, sanitary
facilities, sanitary supervision, food, etc, which are under the supervision
of a single authority. That means that this office must stay in contact
with all other relevant branches of the movement.
Office of Architectonic Matters
The Architectonic Office arranges the location for mass meetings and
the specific requirements of the event.
Department of Film
The task of the Main Office of Film is the regular organization of film
shows suitable for public enlightenment and education, and which contribute
to deepening the National Socialist worldview. The Slide Show Office is
subordinate to the Film Department,
The Department of Film includes the following offices;
Production and Equipment
Department of Radio
The Radio Office of the NSDAP is responsible for the supervision of the
entire German radio system, with the goal of making the radio consistent
with National Socialist principles in its organizational, cultural, technical,
and economic development. Only in this way will it be possible to take
National Socialism in and through the radio into the practical life form
of the German nation.
All technical means must be used by the radio warden organization to
reach the entire nation with radio propaganda whether through household,
community, or mass listening.
The Office of Radio has the following divisions:
Office of Cultural Radio and Radio Organization
Office of Radio Technology
Office of Radio Propaganda
Office of Cultural Radio and Radio Organization
The broadcasting and reception system, culture work in the radio, education,
scientific radio work, youth radio.
The organization of the radio system (Reich Radio Chamber, subchambers
in the Reich Chamber of Culture, professional organizations), radio exhibitions.
Office of Radio Technology
Technical systems (loudspeaker system), technical training, shortwave
and amateur radio, ultra shortwave system, technical production questions.
Office of Radio Propaganda
Propaganda actions on the radio, listener recruitment, press office,
Department of Culture
The Department of Culture has the task of encouraging and supervising
cultural work as an expression of the National Socialist worldview in
the propaganda of the party, its subsidiaries, and affiliated organizations.
Its offices are:
Office of “Architecture”:
Provides guidelines and regulations for all architectural questions on
monuments and such buildings as serve the public work of the National
Office of Artistic Policy
Provides guidelines and regulations for all other artistic questions
involving symbols, objects, etc. that are used in the public work of the
National Socialist movement. Provides guidelines and regulations for the
artistic aspects of mass meetings and the holding of National Socialist
ceremonies that use cultural means.
The office also includes:
Office of Selection
The provision of musical and literary works that can be used in the mass
meetings and ceremonies of the National Socialist movement.
Office of Programming
Provides sample programs for the ceremonies of the National Socialist
movement and for the organization of National Socialist mass meetings
in the tradition of those of the period of struggle for power.
The elimination of inappropriate methods that some attempt to apply in
The battle against Kitsch, the protection of National Socialist
purity in ceremonies, the prevention of mystic and pseudo-religious perversion
of the worldview through the work of cranks.
Commissions to appropriate artists according to the proper guidelines.
Suitable persons are employed as members or assistants in special areas
by the Reichspropagandaleiter.
The holding of practical courses for speaking choruses and the recruitment
of suitable persons for the work in all groups of the movement. The Department
of Culture publishes the monthly Guidelines for National Socialist
Ceremonies, which gives propaganda and cultural functionaries the
material necessary for their work. It also includes guidelines consistent
with our basic attitudes to prevent superficial conduct of discussion
evenings, membership meetings, home evenings of the Hitler Youth, comradeship
evenings of the S.A. and SS, etc.
The unity of party and legally constituted professional organizations
in the cultural sphere is guaranteed by relationships between the relevant
offices. The Reichspropagandaleiter of the NSDAP is simultaneously
president of the Reich Chamber of Culture.
The head of the Cultural Office of the RPL is simultaneously National
Cultural Administrator in the Reich Chamber of Culture.
Department of Coordination
The Department of Coordination is responsible for contact with the ministries,
offices, and public bodies, etc. This ensures that the relevant governmental
offices are informed of propaganda guidelines, and also that the Reichspropagandaleitung
is informed of all tasks and guidelines that come from the Reich Propaganda
Ministry. To guarantee the unified conduct of propaganda on the part of
both the party and the state, the Coordination Department is responsible
for ensuring that the directives of the Reichspropagandaleitung
are brought to the attention of subordinate, affiliated, and associated
The Staff Office has the following sections:
1. The “Reich Ring for National Socialist Propaganda and People’s
2. The “Reich Technical Team” with help from Bavaria
3. The Business Office of the RPL
4. The Department of Press Propaganda
5. The Office of Exhibitions and Trade Fairs
The Reich Ring for National Socialist Propaganda and People’s Enlightenment
has the task of ensuring the unified conduct of propaganda on the part
of all subsidiaries and affiliated organizations of the party. The Reich
Ring consists of a representative of the propaganda offices of all subsidiaries
and organizations, assigned by the relevant leader, as well as other representatives
of particular offices of the Reichsleitung, etc.
The Reich Technical Team has the task of providinf the most modern technical
means to all subsidiaries and affiliated organizations. The Reich Technical
Team also assists such mass meetings that are not held by the party, but
are of national significance.
The business office is responsible for the bookkeeping and administrative
matters of the Reichspropagandaleitung, subordinate to a department
Office of Press Propaganda
The Office of Press Propaganda is responsible for publicizing the work
of the various departments of the Reichspropagandaleitung to
the proper offices of the National Socialist press as well as to the rest
of the press.
Office of Exhibitions and Trade Fairs
The task of the Office for Exhibitions and Trade Fairs is to supervise
all exhibitions in which the party participates from a propagandistic
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