Monday, July 9, 2012

MAUS, by Art Spiegelman

MAUS I: A Survivor's Tale: My Father Bleeds History 
by Art Spiegelman

New York: Pantheon, 1986
160 pages. Ages 12-18.

ISBN 9780394747231

MAUS is the story of Vladek Spiegelman, a Jewish survivor of the Holocaust. His son Art shares the terrifying details, and also shows the reader bits and pieces of his own relationship with his father.

The Jewish characters in the novel are drawn as mice; cats in the novel represent the Germans and the pigs represent people of Polish descent. MAUS I leaves off at Vladek’s arrival at Auschwitz with his wife, and the sequel MAUS II picks up with how they escaped. This is an interesting look at a complex paternal relationship as well as a history of one Jewish man’s experience during the Holocaust. There are elements of metanarrative, where the author shows pieces of his and his father’s relational dynamic, which helps break up the tension within the story and the flashbacks that happen frequently throughout the novel.

1986 National Book Critics Circle nominee
1991 National Book Critics Circle nominee
1992 Pulitzer Prize
1992 Eisner Award
1992 Harvey Award

No author’s website
Media: pen and ink, pencil

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