The Propaganda of Vichy France

The Propaganda of Vichy France

The History Channel  |  July 8, 2018

How did the man who promoted collaborating with the Nazi occupiers manage to keep such a glowing image all the way up to the Liberation, when French public opinion was so hostile to the German occupation? We have all seen the posters, heard the speeches, and seen the tiny sculptures of Marechal Petain. But do you know that the Marechal also received tens of thousands of gifts? That his trips were organised in minute detail? That post office censors opened up to one million letters every week to keep tabs on French public opinion? This film is the first in a series devoted exclusively to Vichy propaganda. Behind the Petain enigma, behind the crushing blow of defeat, there was a phenomenal attempt to control people's minds. With help from historian Denis Pechanski, and personal accounts from every region of France, this documentary will explore the key issues raised by Vichy propaganda, as well as the mechanisms that spread it across France.

How did the man who promoted collaborating with the Nazi occupiers manage to keep such a glowing image all the way up to the Liberation, when French public opinion was so hostile to the German occupation? We have all seen the posters, heard the speeches, and seen the tiny sculptures of Marechal Petain. But do you know that the Marechal also received tens of thousands of gifts? That his trips were organised in minute detail? That post office censors opened up to one million letters every week to keep tabs on French public opinion? This film is the first in a series devoted exclusively to Vichy propaganda. Behind the Petain enigma, behind the crushing blow of defeat, there was a phenomenal attempt to control people's minds. With help from historian Denis Pechanski, and personal accounts from every region of France, this documentary will explore the key issues raised by Vichy propaganda, as well as the mechanisms that spread it across France.

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