Essay Sample on Maus: Readings and Discussion

Published: 2023-09-13
Essay Sample on Maus: Readings and Discussion
Essay type:  Book review
Categories:  World War 2 Concentration camps Character analysis Books Essays by pagecount
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 625 words
6 min read

Vladek is the character hidden in the shadows, and the image portrayed by this image is that Art Spiegelman has a great desire to know about this man whom he regards as the father. The shadows are making the section that Art has only a dim view and understanding of his father. That is why Art is trying to convince Vladek to tell hymen about his life during the time of the Second World War and the living process in Poland. Everything about his father seems like a shadow to Artie, for he can personally see Vladek, but he knows nothing about this significant issue in his life.

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The recurring animals that are depicted in this study are mice, cats, and pigs. The Maus graphic novel relies on postmodernist techniques, and some of the representation made are the Germans being viewed as cats, Jews as mice while the Polish are regarded as pigs. The Germans are seen as the ones that are hunting the perpetrators as this is depicted when Vladek is captured and taken to a concentration camp. Therefore, the Germans are seen as cats while the Jews are the mice, for they are the ones that get captured, taken to a camp, and they are tortured with a significant number of them dying. The reason why Spiegelman used animals instead of humans in the story Maus is because these animals are working as metaphors. The use of the human characters is likely to make it difficult to understand the victims and offenders, and the reliance on the animal characters enables a reader to know the person who is a Jew and the ones that are not. It is also easier to identify with abstract characters in a story.

The depiction of mice and cats in the story Tom and Jerry is similar to what is highlighted in the Maus story. In both stories, there is a victim and an offender, and it becomes easier to relate with the characters and identify them. The use of carton format is an effective way of displaying details that are incorporating a victim and an offender, for it becomes easier for readers to relate with the characters in a story.

According to Scott McCloud, it is true that face with few details is likely to represent anyone. In the story Maus, mice have been used to depict all the Jews, for they are portrayed as a lot that was suffering from the war effects. Vladek was one of the Jews, and it is not possible to use Vladek as a complete representation of all the Jews. However, by using the mice’s character, a reader can manage to view all the Jews and their predicaments. The use of the cats to represent the Germans is a general character that portrays this community as a society that oppresses and kills others.

It is possible to note the positive attitudes that exist between Spiegelman and Vladek as highlighted in pages 184-185. They are willing to share each other’s house, and when Vladek addresses his son as darling is an indication that he loves the son. Artie is willing to know more about his father, and the dad is ready to give details that the son wants to know. The attitude between them does not disrupt the narrative, but it continues to build it showing that despite the war, the families remained strong. Vladek was separated from Anja, but still remained together in heart.

The entrance to Auschwitz shows that life would be conducive in these concentration camps. However, things would be different as Vladek explains that when people enter these camps, there would be no coming out. They would be subjected to torture by gas and then placed in ovens.

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