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In what ways did the British Government attempt to hide the effects of the Blitz from the people of Britain?

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Introduction

Sarah Higgs 11.4 21st October 3. In what ways did the British Government attempt to hide the effects of the Blitz from the people of Britain? Within the British Government, the Ministry of Information was set up specifically to try and hide the more severe effects of the Blitz from the people of Britain. The reason for this ministry being set up was simple; Hitler wanted Britain to surrender to him. The best way to do this was to try and break the morale of the British people by bombing them, destroying their homes and killing their family. If Hitler caused enough damage, the people of Britain were expected to force the Government to surrender to him. The Government wanted to make sure that the people of Britain didn't want to give up fighting Hitler and so, to prevent the British public from opposing the War and trying to over power the Government, they set up the Ministry of Information. The Blitz had horrific effects on Britain, both to property and to people lives, but the Ministry of Information managed to cover up most of these effects in two ways; censorship and propaganda. The first method that the Government used was censorship. ...read more.

Middle

For example, a photograph taken supposedly just after a raid shows soldiers and civilians standing along side by side and smiling at the camera. This image would be meant to encourage others to feel the same sort of determination and hope that the people in the photograph did. Stories and photographs describing the heroism and bravery of those actually fighting, e.g. firemen fighting a fire, were also published and these reminded the public that everyone was doing their bit to fight Hitler. During the Blitz, the King and Queen of England were thought of bitterly and with resentment until after Buckingham Palace was hit by an air raid. After this, many photographs and stories describe the King and Queen visiting normal men and women in shelters, giving the public the impression that everyone is involved with the war effort; even the monarchy. Again, in one particular photograph of this sort of scene, everyone in the shot is pictured smiling. St Paul's Cathedral, a symbol of London, was actually part of a blaze that hit Britain. One especial photograph taken of this scene was an image of St Paul's in the background with flames surrounding the edges of the photograph. ...read more.

Conclusion

For example, a certain documentary created by Jennings, called "The Heart of Britain" showed a large group of women working until they were forced to go down into an air raid shelter during an attack. Even inside the shelter they were filmed playing a different version of musical chairs using a balloon. This scene was created to try and show the British how well they were all coping, and that they weren't scared of what Hitler could do; their lives had to carry on as normal. In conclusion to this, the Government's aims for censorship and propaganda was to protect the public from the real truth of what Hitler was doing, and to encourage them to live their lives as normal and work together to defeat the Nazis. The Government did this by removing any articles or images that were not suitable enough to be published and to create stories of heroism and bravery in Britain whenever necessary. The documentaries and booklets were produced to aid the public in whatever help they may require during the Blitz, for example how to use a gas mask. As well as this, they were produced to influence the public into thinking that if they all worked together and remained calm, and then Britain could defeat Germany and win the war. ...read more.

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