School of History


profile image for Professor David Welch

Professor David Welch

Emeritus Professor


David Welch is a historian who specialises in twentieth century political propaganda.

David Welch studied for his doctorate at the London School of Economics under James Joll. After temporary appointments at the LSE and the American University College London, he joined the University of Westminster where he became Director of the BA Social Science Degree. In 1992, he was appointed Professor of Modern European History (later changed to Modern History) at the University of Kent. He was also Director of the Centre for the Study of War, Propaganda and Society, which he set up at Kent in 1995.

His main research interest is in twentieth century political propaganda. His work previous to this has been in the area of late nineteenth and twentieth century German history, focusing on the relationship between public opinion, politics, and propaganda in German society. His publications include Germany: Propaganda & Total War 1914-18 (Rutgers University Press, 2000), The Third Reich: Politics, and Propaganda (Routledge, revised second edition, 2002), Hitler: Profile of a Dictator (Routledge, 2001), Propaganda and the German Cinema, 1933-1945 (I.B.Tauris, 2001), and Propaganda and Mass Persuasion: A Historical Encyclopedia from 1500 to the Present [with D. Culbert and N. Cull] (ABC Clio, 2003), Justifying War: Propaganda, Politics and the Modern Age [with Jo Fox] (Palgrave, 2012).

A caricature of Professor David Welch

He is currently writing a major history of propaganda in the twentieth century and (together with his colleague Ulf Schmidt) a Holocaust Reader. He is General Editor of Routledge's Sources in History series.

At undergraduate level he has taught courses on nineteenth and twentieth century Europe, cinema and society, life in the Third Reich and the Cold War. He also convened and taught a course on war and the media on the taught MA programme ‘War, Media and Modernity’.

David Welch is an enthusiastic Spurs supporter and it is his ambition to see Tottenham win a trophy. David is the eternal optimist!

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Chapters in Books


  • Napoleon and Nelson, Painting, Propaganda and Patriotism in the Napoleonic Era. (History Today, July 2005)
  • 'Nazi Propaganda and the Volksgemeinschaft: Constructing a People's Community', Journal of Contemporary History Vol 39, 2 (2004), pp. 213-238
  • 'Hitler and the Führer State', New Perspective Vol 9 (December, 2003), pp. 28-32
  • 'Hitler's History Films', History Today Vol 52 (December, 2002), pp. 20-25

Other Works

Forthcoming Works

  • A History of Twentieth Century Propaganda
  • Holocaust Reader (with Prof Ulf Schmidt)


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  • Co-organising (with Ulf Schmidt and James Peto) War of Nerves. Medicine During the Cold War (Public Exhibition and catalogue funded by the Wellcome Trust, and to be exhibit at the Wellcome Institute 2012)
  • Series Consultant: CBC (Canada) Love, Hate and Propaganda: The Cold War (4 one hour television programmes broadcast in March/April 2011)
  • Series Consultant: CBC (Canada) Love, Hate and Propaganda: Selling World War II (6 one hour television programmes broadcast in March/April 2010)
  • Founder member of ECOWAST (European Cooperation on Contemporary War Studies, 2009)
  • Consultant historian for the United States Holocaust Museum (Washington, D.C.) exhibition on ‘Propaganda in the 20th Century and the Holocaust’ (2009)
  • Consultant Historian:  Discovery Channel (USA) Hitler’s Blood Oath (2009)
  • Consultant Historian: BBC4 Edwardians in Colour: The Wonderful World of Albert Khan (2007)
  • Consultant Historian: Channel 4 Anatomy of Disgust (2000)
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School of History, Rutherford College, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NX

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Last Updated: 15/08/2014