Wednesday, April 15, 2009

When Goering was a pin-up: The German women's magazines that mixed fashion with Fascism

With knitting patterns, recipes and fashion, it seems to offer a diverting read for housewives and mothers. But a clue to the sinister aims of this women's magazine lies in the choice of cover model  -  Hermann Goering, a Hitler henchman and few people's idea of a pin-up. The Nazi publishers had more on their minds than merely entertaining German women while their menfolk were fighting the Allies.

Frauen Warte

Hermann Goering poses with his daughter Edda for the cover of Frauen Warte in February 1940 just months before as commander of the Luftwaffe he launched the Battle of Britain

Each issue of Frauen Warte ( translated as Women Wait) contained articles full of propaganda designed to brainwash readers into accepting Hitler's tyranny. The cover photograph from February 1940 shows Luftwaffe chief Goering cuddling baby daughter Edda in a warped version of the kind of 'tough but sensitive man' images often seen today.

nazi mag

nazi mag

The military backdrop was ever-present in the magazines

nazi mag

nazi mag

Pastoral themes and emphasis on the family were interspersed with Nazi propaganda. Inside is an article entitled The Expert Housewife of Today, discussing schooling for women in home economics. But there are also two pages devoted to claiming England was responsible for the Second World War because it wanted to take over the world.

It is among 65 issues of the magazine belonging to a private collector, which are to be auctioned.


A two-page article claims England is responsible for the Second World War, before more familiar stories on home economics and fashion news

nazi mag

This article talks about all the ways that women help society from ironing to working in a laboratory

Frauen Warte, the Nazi Party's biweekly magazine for women, ran from 1935 to 1945. In 1939, it had a circulation of 1.9million. Richard Westwood-Brookes, of Mullock's Auctioneers, said: 'As you turn through the pages you get an incredibly creepy feeling.


Hitler salutes the troops on one cover of the women's magazine. The collection is going under the hammer at  Mullock's Auctioneers and is expected to fetch around  £700

'It shows the Nazi propaganda machine was so well-oiled it infiltrated every area of human society. ''You've got magazines very much in the mould of today's glossy women's mags, filled with things you would expect, but then with propaganda inside.' The magazines are expected to fetch at least £700 in total at the Mullock's auction at Ludlow Racecourse in Shropshire on April 23.


The 65 magazines are stuffed with recipes, songs for folk groups and fashion advice


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