The character of Joseph Goebbels in The Boys in the Boat from LitCharts | The creators of SparkNotes

The Boys in the Boat

The Minister of Propaganda under Adolf Hitler, Joseph Goebbels was a vain, cruel, manipulative man, but had an undeniable genius for propaganda. It was Goebbels, not Hitler, who first realized that the Olympic games could be a major coup for the Nazi state, since it would give Hitler a chance to trick the world into thinking that Germany was an enlightened, peaceful place. Goebbels was perhaps more responsible than any other single person for the success of the 1936 Olympic games; thanks to his careful manipulations of public opinion, thousands of powerful politicians and diplomats left Berlin singing Hitler’s praises.

Joseph Goebbels Quotes in The Boys in the Boat

The The Boys in the Boat quotes below are all either spoken by Joseph Goebbels or refer to Joseph Goebbels. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Teamwork and Trust Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Penguin Books edition of The Boys in the Boat published in 2014.
Chapter 1 Quotes

And Hitler, as he listened to Goebbels, and knowing full well what he had planned for Germany in the days, months, and years ahead, had slowly begun to recognize the value in presenting a more attractive face to the world than his brown-shirted storm troopers and his black-shirted security forces had displayed thus far. At the very least, an Olympic interlude would help buy him time—time to convince the world of his peaceful intentions, even as he began to rebuild Germany's military and industrial power for the titanic struggle to come.

Related Characters: Adolf Hitler, Joseph Goebbels
Page Number: 21
Explanation and Analysis:
Quotes explanation long mobile

Unlock explanations and citation info for this and every other The Boys in the Boat quote.

Plus so much more...

Get LitCharts A+
Already a LitCharts A+ member? Sign in!
Get the entire The Boys in the Boat LitChart as a printable PDF.
The boys in the boat.pdf.medium

Joseph Goebbels Character Timeline in The Boys in the Boat

The timeline below shows where the character Joseph Goebbels appears in The Boys in the Boat. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Sports, Politics, and Community Theme Icon
Class Theme Icon
Propaganda Theme Icon
...and feared that the games would bring Jews and other “vagabond races” to Germany. Joseph Goebbels, the Minister of Propaganda, convinced Hitler to change his mind. Goebbels was a shrewd man,... (full context)
Chapter 6
Sports, Politics, and Community Theme Icon
Propaganda Theme Icon
On the same day, Joseph Goebbels and his wife had a child. Life was good for Goebbels: the Olympic stadium was... (full context)
Teamwork and Trust Theme Icon
Sports, Politics, and Community Theme Icon
Propaganda Theme Icon
...he commissioned her to direct Victory of Faith, a propaganda film about a Nazi rally. Goebbels became jealous of Riefenstahl’s success, but he also admired her films and her beauty. Together,... (full context)
Chapter 8
Teamwork and Trust Theme Icon
Sports, Politics, and Community Theme Icon
Propaganda Theme Icon
...same time, Leni Riefenstahl was working on her new film, Triumph of the Will. Joseph Goebbels continued to envy Riefenstahl’s friendship with Hitler, and Riefenstahl later claimed that he tried to... (full context)
Chapter 14
Sports, Politics, and Community Theme Icon
Propaganda Theme Icon
...to show off Germany’s sophistication and peacefulness, disguising the brutality of his regime. Hitler and Goebbels commissioned Riefenstahl to direct Olympia, a propaganda film about the 1936 games, designed to glamorize... (full context)
Chapter 16
Sports, Politics, and Community Theme Icon
Propaganda Theme Icon
...them. Only a few years later, most of them would be murdered in death camps. Goebbels had converted Berlin into “a place where illusion could be perfected,” so that journalists and... (full context)
Teamwork and Trust Theme Icon
Sports, Politics, and Community Theme Icon
Propaganda Theme Icon
...public ceremony the world had yet seen.” Inside the Olympic stadium, Leni Riefenstahl and Joseph Goebbels were, as usual, arguing. Riefenstahl wanted to place cameras in certain areas of the stage,... (full context)
Chapter 17
Propaganda Theme Icon
...the truth about Nazi Germany, though, the boys saw only the cheerful propaganda that Joseph Goebbels had worked hard to create. (full context)