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Preparing for Victory: Heinrich Hunke, the Nazi Werberat, and West German Prosperity

  • Pamela E. Swett (a1)
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When we think about the Third Reich, the first images that come to mind are not those associated with buying and selling. Though an increasing number of studies have appeared on consumer habits and policies toward consumers, the literature on the Nazi period has been dominated by a focus on production, specifically war production. For every study of the consumer economy, there have been dozens on the Four-Year Plan, the use of foreign and slave labor, and heavy industry. In recent years a number of historians have begun to question this imbalance. Hartmut Berghoff and Wolfgang Koenig have argued that the regime encouraged “virtual consumption” through images of a future postwar era of peace and prosperity: the people's car, the people's refrigerator, and other products that would be available to all once victory had been achieved. Nancy Reagin and Irene Guenther have provided compelling material on the responses of female consumers to the decreasing availability of many household items, starting with the introduction of the autarkic Four-Year Plan. Nonetheless, this recent wave of interest in issues of consumption has tended to concentrate on the prewar years of the regime; after 1939, most historians merely emphasize the growing shortage of goods as the war dragged on. One exception is Goetz Aly, who has maintained that allegiance to the regime was secured through the dissemination of goods stolen from Jews and the occupied territories. But his arguments have not convinced everyone, and his focus on the distribution of goods merely as a means of generating political support says little about how it fit in with wider patterns of consumer expectations and long-term economic thinking.

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1 For Berghoff's concept of “virtual consumption,” see Berghoff, Hartmut, “Methoden der Verbrauchslenkung im Nationalsozialismus,” in Wirtschaftskontrolle und Recht in der nationalsozialistischen Diktatur, ed. Gossewinkel, Dieter (Frankfurt am Main: Klostermann, 2005), 281316; and Berghoff, , “Enticement and Deprivation: The Regulation of Consumption in Pre-war Nazi Germany,” in The Politics of Consumption: Material Culture and Citizenship in Europe and America, ed. Daunton, Martin and Hilton, Matthew (Oxford: Berg, 2001), 165184. For more on the “people's products,” see Koenig, Wolfgang, Volkswagen, Volksempfänger, Volksgemeinschaft: “Volksprodukte” im Dritten Reich. Vom Scheitern einer nationalsozialistischen Konsumgesellschaft (Paderborn: Schöningh, 2004).

2 Guenther, Irene, Nazi Chic? Fashioning Women in the Third Reich (New York: Berg, 2004); and Reagin, Nancy, Sweeping the German Nation: Domesticity and National Identity in Germany, 1870–1945 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2006).

3 Aly, Goetz, Hitler's Beneficiaries: Plunder, Racial War, and the Nazi Welfare State (New York: Henry Holt, 2005).

4 Tooze, Adam, The Wages of Destruction: The Making and Breaking of the Nazi Economy (New York: Viking, 2006).

5 Ritschl, Albrecht, “Hat das Dritte Reich wirklich eine ordentliche Beschäftigungspolitik betrieben?,” Jahrbuch für Wirtschaftsgeschichte 1 (2003): 125140.

6 Ibid., 139.

7 For one example, see Abelhauser, Werner, “Germany: Guns, Butter and Economic Miracles,” in The Economics of World War Two: Six Great Powers in International Comparison, ed. Harrison, Mark (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1998), 122124.

8 Oral histories have shown that the second half of the 1930s and early 1940s were often remembered fondly in comparison to the Weimar instability that preceded it and the defeat and occupation that followed. Herbert, Ulrich, “‘Die guten und die schlechten Zeiten.’ Ueberlegungen zur diachronen Analyse lebensgeschichtlicher Interviews,” in “Die Jahre weiss man nicht, wo man die heute hinsetzen soll.” Faschismuserfahrungen im Ruhrgebiet, ed. Niethammer, Lutz, vol. 1 (Berlin: Verlag J. H. W. Dietz Nachfolger, 1983), 6796. Peter Fritzsche discusses the emerging sense of optimism that was cultivated by the state and consumed by many of its citizens in the prewar years. See Fritzsche, Peter, Life and Death in the Third Reich (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press), 5665.

9 Sales of beauty products, for example, did well in this era. Inexpensive radios were also popular, with rates of ownership only low in comparison to the United States and the U.K. Ross, Corey, Media and the Making of Modern Germany: Mass Communications, Society, and Politics from the Empire to the Third Reich (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008). Shelley Baranowski's study of Strength Through Joy's travel program has also shown the enjoyment found in the increased consumption of holiday travel in the Third Reich. Baranowski, Shelley, Strength Through Joy: Consumerism and Mass Tourism in the Third Reich (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2004).

10 Tooze, Wages of Destruction, 162.

11 For one example among many, see [Writer, Staff], “Des Verbrauchers Anteil am Erfolg,” Die Deutsche Volkswirtschaft, no. 1 (January 1941): 2122.

12 The Werberat's advisory board consisted of about forty-five men at its conception. They were all high-ranking members of German industry, national and local members of government, and representatives of trade organizations. To name a few, Press Reichsleiter Max Amann, Persil's Hugo Henkel, Jacob Herle of the Reich Association of German Industry, Mayor Friedrich Krebs of Frankfurt am Main, Christian Kupferberg of the eponymous champagne producers, Richard Kunzler of the Reich Association of Advertisers, Staatsrat Wilhelm Meinberg of the Reichsnährstand, and Ludwig Roselius of the decaffeinated coffee giant Kaffee Hag. The full list appears in Heinrich Hunke's unpublished essay, “Wandel und Gestalt der deutschen Wirtschaftswerbung in den letzten 70 Jahren” (1970), fn. 2, 4–5.

13 Hunke, Heinrich, “Die Ausschaltung der Juden,” Die Deutsche Volkswirtschaft, no. 33 (1938): 1198. For more on Hunke's understanding of race and Lebensraum, see Kletzin, Birgit, Europa aus Rasse und Raum. Die nationalsozialistische Idee der Neuen Ordnung (Münster: Lit Verlag, 2000). On his participation in the aryanization of Jewish businesses and businessmen's associations as president of the Verein Berliner Kaufleute und Industrieller and Gauwirtschaftsberater, see Biggeleben, Christof, “Die Verdrängung der Juden aus der Berliner Industrie- und Handelskammer und dem Verein Berliner Kaufleute und Industrieller,” in “Arisierung” in Berlin, ed. Biggeleben, Christof, Schreiber, Beate, and Steiner, Kilian J. L. (Berlin: Metropol, 2007), 5486.

14 Harold James calls Hunke “the most influential of National Socialist economic theorists” in Gall, Lothar, Feldman, Gerald D., James, Harold, Holtfrerich, Carl-Ludwig, and Buschen, Hans E., The Deutsche Bank, 1870–1995 (London: Wiedenfeld & Nicholson, 1995), 343. Hauke Janssen lists Hunke among the most significant party functionaries for the development of national socialist economic doctrine. Janssen, Hauke, Nationalökonomie und Nationalsozialismus. Die deutsche Volkswirtschaftslehre in den dreißiger Jahren (Marburg: Metropolis Verlag, 2000), 99.

15 With no banking experience, Hunke was clearly brought onto the board as a party watchdog. On his tenure at Deutsche Bank, see Gall et al., The Deutsche Bank, in particular pages 356–358 and 360–366, and the brief note in James, Harold, The Deutsche Bank and the Nazi Economic War against the Jews: The Expropriation of Jewish-Owned Property (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003), 3031.

16 On the Werberat and advertising in Nazi Germany more generally, see Westphal, Uwe, Werbung im Dritten Reich (Berlin: Transit, 1989); and Ruecker, Matthias, Wirtschaftswerbung unter dem Nationalsozialismus (Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, 2000).

17 On the history of advertising in Germany, see Swett, Pamela E., Wiesen, S. Jonathan, and Zatlin, Jonathan R., eds., Selling Modernity: Advertising in Twentieth-Century Germany (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2007); and Reinhardt, Dirk, Von der Reklame zum Marketing. Geschichte der Wirtschaftswerbung in Deutschland (Berlin: Akademie, 1993).

18 Fritz Nonnenbruch, Völkischer Beobachter, September 9, 1939, as quoted in Dr.Jacobsen-Faulück, Hans, “Marktordnung in der Werbewirtschaft?,” Deutsche Werbung 33, no. 5/6 (March 1940): 148.

19 Peter Fritzsche reminds us that to some extent sacrifice itself became a consumable commodity. For example, a massive trade in collectible buttons that indicated donations to the Nazi Winter Relief campaigns flourished throughout this period. See Fritzsche, Life and Death in the Third Reich, 54.

20 Berghahn, Volker R., “Writing the History of Business in the Third Reich: Past Achievements and Future Directions,” in Business and Industry in Nazi Germany, ed. Nicosia, Francis R. and Huener, Jonathan (New York: Berghahn, 2004), 143144.

21 The censorship mechanism of the Werberat worked in a rather curious way. Promotional materials were drawn up and released into circulation prior to receiving permission from the Werberat. If the advertisement did not pass muster, it would be withdrawn until changes could be made that satisfied the authorities. Failure to do so or any other type of resistance to a suggested change could lead to the suspension of a practitioner's license, though this threat does not appear to have been acted upon frequently.

22 Cf. Jelavich, Peter, Berlin Alexanderplatz: Radio, Film, and the Death of Weimar Culture (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2006); Steinweis, Alan E., “Anti-Semitism and the Arts in Nazi Ideology and Policy,” in The Arts in Nazi Germany: Continuity, Conformity, Change, ed. Heuner, Jonathan and Nicosia, Francis R. (New York: Berghahn, 2006); and Guenther, Nazi Chic?

23 Heinrich Hunke, unpublished memoir “Erinnerungen und Betrachtungen,” 1999, 4. Hunke's son, Dr. Henrich Hunke, has been working on finishing the manuscript since his father's death in 2000. I am grateful for his permission to see short sections of the larger work as it stood in 2006.

24 Even as victory seemed less likely, Hunke continued to make this point. See Hunke, Heinrich, “Hat der Unternehmer noch eine Zukunft?,” Signal (January 1943), reprinted in Signal (Oberkommando der Wehrmacht, 1945), 237–243. See this article's further discussion of Signal, the German propaganda magazine that circulated throughout Europe during the war. On the importance of entrepreneurship to Nazi ideology, see among others, Buchheim, Christoph and Scherner, Jonas, “The Role of Private Property in the Nazi Economy: The Case of Industry,” The Journal of Economic History 66, no. 2 (June 2006): 408410.

25 Reithinger, Anton, “Die Kaufkraftsteigerung als wichtiges Problem der europäischen Neuordnung,” Die Deutsche Volkswirtschaft, no. 1/2 (January 1941): 72. Reithinger was the leader of the Volkswirtschaftlichen Abteilung of IG Farben Industries.

26 Ruecker, Wirtschaftswerbung unter dem Nationalsozialismus.

27 Maelicke, Alfred, “Die Entjudung in Europa,” Die Deutsche Volkswirtschaft, no. 1/2 (January 1941): 74. In the early 1940s, Hunke expounded on what he saw to be the differences between liberal capitalism and Nazi economic theory. In one speech from early 1942, he spoke of three principles that separated the two theories: in place of the individual, National Socialism focused on the Volk; when liberal economists considered the global market, Nazis thought of Lebensraum; and when the British put value in capital as the driving force of the economy, their German counterparts emphasized the value of labor. Hunke, Heinrich, “Die Grundfrage. Europa—ein geographischer Begriff oder eine politische Tatsache?,” Europäische Wirtschaftsgemeinschaft, ed. Verein Berliner Kaufleute und Industieller und Wirtschafts-Hochschule Berlin (Berlin: Haude & Spenersche, 1943), 209229.

28 Nuremberg's Society for Consumer Research (GfK) enjoyed the support of the regime. Future architect of the West German economic miracle, Ludwig Erhard, and others within the Society would continue to organize surveys of citizens on their purchasing preferences throughout the 1930s and into the war years. For more on the GfK, see the forthcoming book by S. Jonathan Wiesen, Creating the Nazi Consumer: Masses and Marketing in the Third Reich (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming). The Werberat would create its own section for market research in 1940 and undertake a number of studies of European and South American countries. Cf. Westphal, Werbung im Dritten Reich, 139–140.

29 For the most complete treatise on the role and aims of the Werberat, see Hunke, Heinrich, Die neue Wirtschaftswerbung. Eine Grundlegung der deutschen Werbepolitik (Hamburg: Hanseatische Verlagsanstalt, 1938).

30 Endres, Emil, “Die neue Gesinnung in der Werbung,” Die Reklame 26, no. 12 (July 1933) as quoted in Corey Ross, “Visions of Prosperity” in Selling Modernity, ed. Swett et al., 69.

31 See also the report of the Werberat President Reichard on advertising expenditures from November 1933 to March 1935, Bundesarchiv Berlin (BAB), R55/359, 181–197. Total expenditures on advertising materials, which do not therefore include the costs of personnel or other internal budgetary issues, was just under three million Reichsmark (RM) for these sixteen months. The following year, the outlay of funds for domestic and foreign Werberat-produced ads jumped by 800,000 RM. See Reichard's report for the period April 1935 to March 1936, BAB, R55/359, 260–276.

32 Hunke, “Erinnerungen und Betrachtungen,” 7. The funds for these expenditures came from the tax that was levied on all publishers who carried ads (Werbeabgabe). When the war broke out, the Nazi press chief Max Amman insisted that only five percent of ads in newspapers would remain and so publishers could no longer be expected to pay the tax. The argument dragged out between Amman, Hunke, and mediators in the Propaganda and Economics ministries for two years. In fall 1941, Hunke could claim that the dramatic decline in print ads that had been expected at the beginning of the war had not come to pass, and the presses were forced to pay (nachzahlen). See the long exchange in Hunke Nachlass, Landesarchiv Nordrhein-Westfalen, Staats- und Personenstandsarchiv (LNWSP), Karton 7/1. Also Hunke, “Erinnerungen und Betrachtungen,” 10–13. According to Hunke, the most useful emissary for the German economy was the former governor of Togo, Herzog Adolf Friedrich zu Mecklenburg, who was sent as a private citizen, though his trips had an “official character,” to Africa and throughout South America before the war began to gain knowledge about these markets for German businessmen. See, Hunke, “Erinnerungen und Betrachtungen,” 6.

33 H. K. Fritzsche and H. Richter, Foreword, in Hunke, Die neue Wirtschaftswerbung, 7.

34 Ruf der Werbung. Vertrauliche Mitteilungen für die Mitglieder der Reichsfachschaft Deutscher Werbefachleute—NSRDW 3 (1937): 20. The 3,000 individuals refused membership represented a considerable portion of the nation's advertising practitioners, considering the organization reported having 13,367 members at the start of 1937. Ruf der Werbung, 3.

35 Ibid., 21.

36 History of Advertising Trust Archive (HAT), Norwich, U.K., GB 2/20, Firth, Jill, ed., Bush House, Berlin, and Berkeley Square: George Butler Remembers JWT, 1925–1962, unpublished manuscript from the conversation with Butler held in 1985, 33. George Butler was the JWT art director in Berlin. Kennett Hinks led the Berlin JWT office until Fritz Solm took over sometime in 1931.

37 See the spread on the newly opened school in Deutsche Werbung, no. 12 (July 1936): 659–677; and in Ruf der Werbung (September 1936).

38 Lill, Ursula, Die Pharmazeutisch-Industrielle Werbung in der ersten Hälfte des 20. Jahrhunderts (Stuttgart: Dt. Apotheker-Verlag, 1990), 381409.

39 Proctor, Robert N., The Nazi War on Cancer (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1999), chapter six. Proctor makes the argument that the Nazi obsession with the health of the nation led to concern and action to ensure product safety far sooner than in other countries. Truth in advertising, therefore, was heralded mainly as a way to protect and promote racial health, as opposed to the creation of rational economic actors. The prohibition of sexually explicit advertising, or ads that “offend the moral sensibilities of the people,” as the Werberat decree put it, fits less well with what we know to be the case about sexuality in this period. Dagmar Herzog has argued that National Socialism supported sexual expression as essential to racial health. Though more work needs to be done in the area of sex and ads in 1930s Germany, it may be that the titillating content of sexually explicit ads was seen as manipulative. Herzog, Dagmar, Sex after Fascism (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2005), chapter one.

40 Schmidt, Walter Ernst, “Wirtschaftswerbung gestern und heute,” Seidels Reklame, no. 4 (April 1936): 106110. On the paradoxical nature of women's fashion ads in the Third Reich, see further Guenther, Nazi Chic?

41 For example, Tooze notes that so many manufacturers sought to mimic the use of “Volk” to market their products (as in Volkswagen) that the Werberat banned the unlicensed use of the term in 1933. Tooze, Wages of Destruction, 147.

42 Grazia, Victoria de, Irresistible Empire: America's Advance through 20th-Century Europe (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press, 2005), chapter five. Corey Ross reports that regime-loyal magazine publishers complained in the mid-1930s that entertainment magazines, and especially the ads within them, still looked far too similar to those from the Weimar era. See Ross, Media and the Making of Modern Germany, 324.

43 Hunke, Heinrich, Der Werberat der deutschen Wirtschaft im Jahre 1939 (Berlin, 1940), 1516. It should also be noted, however, that radio advertising was fully prohibited at the end of 1935.

44 Many small companies, in particular, were hit hard by the regulations of the Werberat. See, for example, the complaints lodged by small business owners in BAB, R55/355, such as Christoph Bader of Munich, whose thirty-five-year-old company that produced protective folios for magazines in hotel lounges and restaurants ran afoul of the Werberat's 1934 regulation by including multiple pages of classifieds in its 1937 folios. Hartmut Berghoff reports further that in 1938 the Werberat was only able to cover part of its regulations in a 266-page, single-spaced publication and that the regulations were notoriously difficult for the average businessman or advertiser to understand. Berghoff, Hartmut, “‘Times Change and We Change with Them’: The German Advertising Industry in the Third Reich—Between Professional Self-Interest and Political Repression,” Business History 45, no. 1 (2003): 134.

45 One particularly combative member of the committee accurately captured Hunke's enthusiasm, yet underestimated the tenacity of the Werberat leadership: “The overzealousness by which the Werberat has developed has been precisely the ground on which it has run ashore, and now only the timing of its burial is yet to be determined.” Record of the Meeting of the Ausschuss für Warenzeichen- und Wettbewerbsrecht der Akademie für Deutsches Recht, February 18, 1937, in BAB, R55/353, 31.

46 See, for example, the unpublished book manuscript by the ad man Hanns Lechner, Wirtschaftswerbung im Krieg und nachher. Gedanken eines Soldaten zur Wanderung der Werbung written “from the field” in 1940. Lechner, Munich's Gaufachschaftsleiter for the NSRDW, wrote of the “stepchild of the economy” (advertising) and defends it from those who see it as serving no purpose in war. He also warned against those who believed that “after victory,” in an economy “free of need,” there would be no need to advertise. Rather, Lechner insists, ads will continue to serve consumers, the economy, and the community as they had done since 1933. Lechner, Wirtschaftswerbung im Krieg und nachher, 30.

47 Hunke, Heinrich, “Die Deutsche Wirtschaftswerbung im Jahre 1941,” Wirtschaftswerbung. Mitteilungsblatt der deutschen Wirtschaft 12 (December 1941): 390.

48 Hunke, Die neue Wirtschaftswerbung, 56.

49 Hunke, Der Werberat der deutschen Wirtschaft im Jahre 1939, 62.

50 Zimmermann, Max, “Die Bedeutung der Anzeige im Kriege,” Wirtschaftswerbung. Mitteilungsblatt der deutschen Wirtschaft, no. 11 (November 1941): 366.

51 Vereinigte Verkehrs-Reklame Berlin advertisement image, Deutsche Werbung 21 (December 1940): 769.

52 And yet to be upstanding members of the community, it was necessary for ad men to remember the dangers of advertising in a market wracked by shortages and unavailable goods. Hunke, Der Werberat der deutschen Wirtschaft im Jahre 1939, 64.

53 Although Goebbels and Hunke had a falling out in 1943, the patron refused to accept the resignation of the man whose career he had furthered for at least a decade. In fact, according to a report cited by Carl-Ludwig Holtfrerich, Hunke fled Berlin on April 26, 1945, out of fear of Goebbels's reaction to the news that Hunke had been trying “to convince the military and political leadership of the economic futility of defending the capital.” Gall et al., Deutsche Bank, 363. In July he was taken captive by the Allies in his hometown near Detmold. He was held by the Americans in Dachau and Nuremberg until 1947.

54 [Anonymous], , “Im Gleichschritt,” Deutsche Werbung, no. 17 (October 1940): 566571.

55 Interestingly, these persuasive text-laden ads were pioneered in the United States. The origins of this “foreign” style were overlooked, publicly at least, by Werberat officials and practitioners alike. See Ross, “Visions of Prosperity,” for more on the German-American advertising relationship in the interwar years.

56 Though increasingly active as the war approached, the RVA was founded on January 12, 1934. On the RVA's initial development, see BAB, R55/359, June 21, 1934, B63–92.

57 Hunke, Heinrich, Der Werberat der deutschen Wirtschaft im Jahre 1940 (Berlin, 1941), 9, 21.

58 Henkel Firmenarchiv, H20, Paul Mundhenke, “Von Reklame zur deutschen Werbung” (no date, likely 1940).

59 David Ciarlo, Advertising Empire, Consuming Race: Colonialism and Visual Culture in Germany, 1887–1914 (University of Michigan Press, forthcoming); and Poiger, Uta, “Beauty, Business, and International Relations,” WerkstattGeschichte 45 (2007).

60 BAB, R5002, Nr. 22, RVA to Dobmann at Sunlicht, November 5, 1942.

61 BAB, R5002, Nr. 22, RVA to Sunlicht, February 20, 1943.

62 BAB, R5002, Nr. 26, RVA to DAF, April 15, 1941.

63 Henkel Firmenarchiv, H20, Paul Mundhenke, “Gedanken über unsere Werbung” (no date, likely 1941), 21–22.

64 Hunke, Heinrich, “Aktive deutsche Werbung,” Wirtschaftswerbung. Mitteilungsblatt der deutschen Wirtschaft 10, no. 1 (1943): 7.

65 On Persil's return to the market, see Feldenkirchen, Wilfried and Hilger, Susanne, Menschen und Marken. 125 Jahre Henkel, 1876–2001 (Düsseldorf: Henkel KGaA, 2001), 124125.

66 [Anonymous], ,“Werbung ohne Beruf?,” Deutsche Werbung 33, no. 13/14 (August 1940): 449450. See also Jacobsen-Faulück, “Marktordnung,” 148–158. It is important to remember that this posturing grew out of the fear that ad men would become obsolete under the new controlled economy. This article articulates that anxiety with section titles such as “Is this the end of advertising?” and “Between Scylla and Charybdis.”

67 Unternehmensarchiv Axel Springer AG, Wiessner Monatsberichte, March 1940. The director of Signal's press, Deutscher Verlag, kept monthly reports during the war that remark on the establishment of the periodical and make it possible to chart the growth of the magazine's circulation. The first detailed monograph on this magazine has recently appeared: Rutz, Rainer, Signal. Eine deutsche Auslandsillustrierte als Propagandainstrument im Zweiten Weltkrieg (Essen: Klartext, 2007); see 39–43 on the rivalry among the Reichsministerium für Volksaufklärung und Propaganda, Auswärtiges Amt, and Oberkommando der Wehrmacht.

68 This author intended to include a Pelikan advertisement from a 1941 French-language Signal edition showing a bird's-eye view of their large manufacturing plant nestled into the peaceful Hannoverian landscape. The company refused permission to reprint the image, however. All other companies contacted about having their ads appear in this article were more than willing to assist in the publication.

69 Rutz sees the propaganda for Europe in Signal as a convenient slogan without real vision. See Rutz, Signal, 253–265.

70 Unternehmensarchiv Axel Springer AG, Max Wiessner Monatsbericht, February 1944. In 1943, Life magazine itself criticized the Office of War Information's Victory as “a pallid imitation” of Signal. The American publication had a circulation less than half the size of the German magazine, and it was produced in only eight languages for neutral territories. See [Anonymous], “U.S. is Losing the War of Words,” Life 14, no. 12 (1943): 11–15. Reproduced at http://www.uw3.de/documents_life.htm, accessed August 11, 2008.

71 JWT in Berlin files, Hartman Center for the History of Marketing and Advertising, Special Collections, Duke University. Solm was remembered as “a big, handsome chap, bit of a brute” by his JWT colleague George Butler after the war. Firth, ed., Bush House, Berlin, and Berkeley Square, 36.

72 Fritz Solm file in Berlin Document Center, BAB, PK/L0322, 2818; BAB SM/R007, 2358; and RK/I503, 658. Solm joined the NSDAP and SS in 1933. He was also an early joiner of the NSRDW, holding the membership number 396. Within the Oberkommando der Wehrmacht, he achieved the rank Rittmeister in 1941 and major in 1945. According to Rainer Rutz, Solm died in 1946 in Switzerland from a self-inflicted tuberculosis infection that he had used as his ticket out of Germany at the end of the war. On Solm, see Rutz, Signal, 36–39 and 128–131; and Schiller, Thomas, NS-Propaganda für den “Arbeitseinsatz” (Hamburg: Lit, 1997), 141142. Both authors note Solm's reputation for shady business dealings.

73 Hunke, “Erinnerungen und Betrachtungen,” 7–8.

74 Ibid., 8. Hunke notes that the trip on a Romanian steamer from Pireas to Istanbul on September 15, 1938, was particularly unforgettable because he and his colleague, Dr. Gerber, were the only Germans on board and “very unedifying scenes could only be controlled by the intervention of our Romanian captain, who took us into his personal protection.”

75 Hunke, Heinrich, “Die Grundlagen der Zwischenstaatlichen Wirtschaftsbeziehungen,” in Wirtschaft im neuen Europa, ed. Gesellschaft, Nordische (Lübeck: Reichskontor der nordischen Gesellschaft, 1941), 42. Hunke explains here that since 1933 the Reich “has worked toward a constructive European economic order” particularly in this region, helping the small nations of southeast Europe overcome their own economic crises “by buying so that the other countries could buy.” Hunke was a member of the Presidium of the Southeast European Society (SOEG), an interest group founded in 1940 by Walther Funk and headed up by Ostmark Gauleiter Baldur von Schirach to promote Germany's political, economic, and cultural connections to the region. Schumann, Wolfgang, ed., Griff nach Südost-Europa (Berlin: VEB Deutscher Verlag, 1973), 5456. The SOEG was the party-led rival to the industry- and finance-dominated Mitteleuropäische Wirtschaftstag (MWT).

76 Long-standing arguments about Nazi exploitation of the smaller European states, particularly in the southeast during the 1930s, has been challenged in recent years. While the “ideological commitment” to orient the German economy toward the east was strong among the Nazi leadership, as we see with Hunke, before the outbreak of war, patterns of trade between Germany and the southeastern countries remained historically consistent. Ritschl, Albrecht O., “Nazi Economic Imperialism and the Exploitation of the Small: Evidence from Germany's Secret Foreign Exchange Balances, 1938–1940,” Economic History Review ILV, no. 2 (2001): 324345, 340.

77 Victoria de Grazia mentions the greater attention shown to commerce between Germany and the southeast at the Leipzig Fair in Irresistible Empire, 222–224.

78 Hunke, “Erinnerungen und Betrachtungen,” 5. For further analysis of Hunke's anti-British sentiment, see also Kletzin, Europa aus Rasse und Raum, 63–71 and 170–171.

79 Hunke, “Die Grundlagen der Zwischenstaatlichen Wirtschaftsbeziehungen,” 40.

80 Hunke, “Die wirtschaftliche Einheit Europas. Tatsachen und Probleme der kontinentaleuropäischen Wirtschaftsgemeinschaft,” DDV, no. 1/2 (1941): 68. Hunke was aware that such talk would raise concern in the north about their quality of life being damaged by the focus on the southeast. Hunke attempted to allay such worries by emphasizing that a “higher standard of living [for all] was also the goal of the German leadership” and that its “struggles will be to the benefit of all Europe, including the north.”

81 Hunke, “Aktive deutsche Werbung,” 7. While Hunke does speak directly of raising the standard of living for local inhabitants in southeastern Europe, we can only presume from earlier statements that he also favored the racial cleansing that was underway in this region.

82 For more on Hunke's 1943 speech and essay, see Herbst, Ludolf, Der Totale Krieg und die Ordnung der Wirtschaft. Die Kriegswirtschaft im Spannungsfeld, 1939–1945 (Stuttgart: Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, 1982), 249252; Kletzin, Europa aus Rasse und Raum, 178–187.

83 Hunke, Heinrich, “Die Kernfragen des wirtschaftspolitischen Kampfes in der Gegenwart,” DDV, no. 27 (1943): 833836. Also available in Zeitschrift für Politik, no. 10/11 (October/November 1943): 425–435. An abridged version was reprinted for circulation throughout the continent in Signal.

84 Coming at the issue from another angle, the economic historian Albrecht Ritschl finds “startling” evidence that leads him to conclude that “the regional and commodity structures of trade flows during the war anticipated trade patterns that became prevalent within the European Community in the 1960s.” Ritschl, “Foreign Exchange Balances,” 341.

85 The Zentralausschuss der Werbewirtschaft (ZAW, Central Federation of the German Advertising Industry), established in 1949 as an umbrella organization of ad agencies and professionals, easily accepted advertisers who had worked under the Werberat. Hunke was a member, too. See Ruecker, Wirtschaftswerbung, 359. The postwar literature from the GfK also speaks highly of the work done by the Werberat, including the founding of the Reichswerbeschule, which “enjoyed an excellent reputation.” See Bergler, Georg, Die Entwicklung der Verbrauchsforschung in Deutschland und die Gesellschaft für Konsumforschung bis zum Jahre 1945 (Kallmünz: Lassleben, 1961), 24. The successful postwar advertiser, Hanns W. Brose, also wrote proudly of his accomplishments in the 1930s and the war years. See Brose, Hanns W., Die Entdeckung des Verbrauchers. Ein Leben für die Werbung (Düsseldorf: Econ-Verlag, 1958), 5588. After a successful career as a marketing director through the 1930s and 1940s, Carl Hundhausen remained a prominent figure in West Germany, writing “the public relations bible” for the country in 1950. See Wiesen, S. Jonathan, West German Industry and the Challenge of the Nazi Past, 1945–1955 (Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 2001), 107.

86 Hunke was released by the Americans in 1947. He was also investigated by the British, who recommended that he be given work by the military government after leaving prison. National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), RG 260: OMGUS. Entry 574 (A1), Dr. Heinrich Hunke, Box 232.

87 Tooze, Wages of Destruction, 676.

88 Hans Domizlaff and Heinrich Hunke correspondence, 1941, Hunke Nachlass, LNWSP, Karton 7/1. For more on Hans Domizlaff in this era, see Holm Friebe, “Branding Germany: Hans Domizlaff's Markentechnik and Its Ideological Impact,” in Selling Modernity, ed. Swett et al., 78–101.

I would like to thank the following individuals for their encouragement and willingness to provide comments on earlier drafts of this article: Stephen Heathorn, Martin Horn, Corey Ross, and Jonathan R. Zatlin. My gratitude also goes to Hartmut Berghoff who invited me to present some of this material to an audience at the German Historical Institute in Washington, D.C. Finally, the two anonymous readers for Central European History also offered useful suggestions, some of which made their way into the final version.

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Central European History
  • ISSN: 0008-9389
  • EISSN: 1569-1616
  • URL: /core/journals/central-european-history
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