“State of Deception: The Power of Nazi Propaganda” forms part of a media education programme for young people in Luxembourg
Fake news is nothing new--propaganda has been doing the rounds for centuries though we still struggle to equip young people and adults with the skills to see through the lies.
“State of Deception” an exhibition of Nazi propaganda brought to Luxembourg in partnership with the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, provides one tool to help.
The visual and textual exhibition at Neimënster shows how the Nazi party developed a sophisticated propaganda machine which spread lies about political opponents, Jews and other minorities and helped to justify war.
The English-language exhibition forms part of Luxembourg’s annual education programme to commemorate the holocaust, but it also serves as an educational tool to help young people develop critical thinking in relation to media.
“A big thing for the moment in politics in Luxembourg is how to deal with the problems related to fake news and propaganda on social media,” Marc Schoentgen, director of the Zentrum fir politesch Bildung and who helped arrange the local exhibition, told Delano on Wednesday, adding: “The idea is to show students and young people how to recognise how propaganda works, to have 10 points on how to proceed.”
Through asking questions and desensitising young audiences, the exhibition aims to help young people generate a critical thinking approach to the media they consume.
In future, Schoentgen hopes to develop a mobile version of exhibition in French and possibly German and English. “It’s difficult to bring all students to the museum. We wanted to make a smaller version of this exhibition as a roll-up we can bring into schools.”
That way, he says, the discussion could continue long after the exhibition moves on from Neimënster. “It’s a process. I think it’s a mission for the school to do this every year during school time. It can’t only be the object of one lesson or a cycle of lessons to talk about propaganda,” he said.