Political Posters
from the Depression Years

Click on the picture to see an enlarged version.

  • Fuk, Berlin
  • Hugo Eberlein, 19" x 12"
  • 1930

Shovel out the Dung


Vote for

The Communists

This poster also comes from the Reichstag election campaign in the fall of 1930. It contains a rather unusual graphic depiction for the Communists, showing a farmer who is tossing a fat man into a fire in which thorns, brambles and other weeds are burning. The man is not identified, either in graphic terms or by a label. And while the concept is not implausible -- farmers do indeed clear up weeds and burn them -- it is not a process which can be described as "shovelling out the dung" which is the translation of "Ausmisten." Thus, I judge this to be a rather amateurish attempt by the KPD to impress an urban population with an image that while dramatic is not too appropriate.

Still, the idea behind the whole poster would be clear: only the Communists are prepared to clear out the whole bourgeois and capitalist society which is already being destroyed by the Depression. Thus, voters ought to accept the inevitability of the Communist triumph.

How much such posters contributed to the Communist cause in 1930 might be questioned, but clearly they thought they were riding an incoming tide. In the Reichstag elections only the Nazis and the Communists gained votes. The Communists ended with nearly 80 seats in the Reichstag, making them the third largest party in Germany.

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