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Spielgelman, Art, Maus: A Survivor's Tale, My Father Bleeds History and And Here My Troubles Began (1978-1991)

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documents in English
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book reviews
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2 pages
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  1. Maus, a graphic novel
  2. Animals representing people
  3. Guilt, the most important theme
  4. The author's point of view

Let me begin with a short biography of the author. Art Spiegelman was born on February 15th, 1948, in Stockholm. He is the son of Vladek and Anja who are Polish Jews who survived to the Holocaust and the deportation in Auschwitz. His parents' life left its mark on his own life and his work. He is a cartoonist and his main work is Maus, a comic book which tells his father's life during World War II. The publication of Maus was progressive. In 1972, a three-pages strip called Maus was published in Funny Animals. In 1977, first Spiegelman's strips were gathered in a collection untitled BREAKDOWNS, From Maus to Now.

[...] The feeling of guilt is one of the most important theme in Maus. This feeling is important in survivors' stories in general. As many survivors' children, Art Spiegelman feels guilty because he had a better life than his parents' one. After the publication of the first volume and its unexpected success, Art Spiegelman represented himself, at the beginning of the second volume, with a mask of a mouse guilt-ridden above a pile of corpses, the corpses of the 6 million victims of the Holocaust (p.201)[4]. [...]


[...] It is longer than a comic and tells a complete story. Moreover, the word novel is used because Art Spiegelman didn't live all the events he tells; there is a part of fiction because he drew something he didn't see. He tells the story his father told him. More precisely, Maus is a graphic memoir because Art Spiegelman tells his father's life as a Polish Jew during World War II but he also tells how he wrote his book and the relationship he has with his father. [...]

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