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Propaganda: Home Front

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"An anti-rumour cartoon" by Thomas Derrick, Possibly 1941. Ink on paper.

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An anti-rumour cartoon

"An anti-rumour cartoon" by Thomas Derrick, Possibly 1941

Catalogue ref: INF 3/228Links to the Catalogue


An anti-rumour cartoon, depicting the fast spread of a rumour from the originator to the general population. The cartoon was originally intended for Punch, but sent by the artist to the Ministry of Information in case it was of any use in their campaigns. The artist noted on this image that he had produced another version with truth emerging from the bottom of a well and ‘fixing the rumour with a LOOK'.

The Cabinet raised the subject of the dangers of rumour in 1941. Home Intelligence (HI) felt that rumour and gossip to some extent aided the relief of anxiety for the public. Rumours were also useful pointers as to what was worrying people, and the best way to deal with them was to find publishable information which would make the rumours less convincing and sinister. A careful watch was kept on rumours and steps were taken to make sure that either explanations or denials were put out through newspapers, or counter-rumours were circulated.