Goebbels, Joseph Paul (1897–1945), a German Nazi propagandist. As minister of propaganda in Adolf Hitler's Third Reich, 1933–45, he not only used the press, radio, and other forms of communication to serve the Nazi regime, but also molded German cultural life to that end. Goebbels, the most educated of the Nazi leaders, received a Ph.D. from the University of Heidelberg in 1921. He soon joined the Nazis, and in 1926 became district leader of the party in Berlin. In the last days of World War II he and his wife committed suicide after killing their six children.