Between the Wars: 1918-1941 (1978): S01E06 – FDR and Hitler: Their Rise to Power


History Documentary hosted by Eric Sevareid, published by PBS in 1978.

Repackaged as “The Road to World War II” (2011) by Questar, Inc. and available on DVD in 2011. Also known as The Road to Pearl Harbour, 1919-1941 (alternative title, US).

Series explores the political and diplomatic events and crises between World War I and World War II.


“The individual does matter in history” – a contrast of the style of FDR and Hitler shows how technological change and individual charisma can change history. FDR uses a new medium (radio) to political advantage; Hitler utilises the new sound movies. This episode contrasts their economic programmes which deal with the Depression and show how each used propaganda (Nazi propaganda and New Deal propaganda). The careers of both men culminated in 1933. Hitler, representing a minority party, was appointed Chancellor and rapidly consolidated his power through propaganda and terrorism. President Roosevelt stood prepared to try new methods of attacking the economic crisis.

Between the Wars: 1918-1941 Series

You can find a full index and overview of Between the Wars: 1918-1941 here.

Production & Filming Details

  • Release Date: 05 April 1978.
  • Rating: Unknown.
  • Running Time: 30 minutes (per episode).
  • Country: US.
  • Language: English.

Video Link(s)

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