Sunday, October 12, 2014

Risk Taking Researcher

After reading the first few chapters of the graphic novel Maus I wanted to learn more about the author because when reading the book I noticed that the author has a strong connection with the story.  Itzhak Avraham ben Zeev who later changed his name to Art Spiegelman was born on February 15, 1948 in Stockholm, Sweden. He is currently 66 years old and is married to Françoise Mouly with two children. He began his career writing comics for Underground comix. Later he began writing Maus. He began writing Maus in 1978 and only completed the book in 1991, it took him 13 years. In order for him to write the book he needed to interview his father since the book is about his experiences. In the book he depicts the Jews as mice, Nazis as cats, and Non-Jewish victims as Pigs.


  1. Fernando,

    I liked how you told about how he started to write comics and then started to write Maus. But a few things you should do are add some more information from the book, tell more about why he started to write about World War II. Also, you said that he depicts the Jews as mice, Nazis as cats, and Non-Jewish victims as Pigs, tell why he did that so we can understand instead of us just saying they are animals.

  2. I thought your information put was very good, but I would like to know more about the choice of the animals put in this book. The cats and mice I know, it is to represent rivalry between these two comical figures. But I do not know where to put the pigs. My inference would be that the pigs have nothing to do with both of the sides, so he made pigs that are completely opposite, because the pigs were not involved in this major conflict, between cats and mice, Nazis and Jews.

  3. I decided to do a little research of my own and according to Maus Wikipedia it states that Maus was the first graphic novel to receive academic attention in the english speaking world. This shows that Spiegelman decided to create something that would be an easy way to show the impact the Holocaust made on the Jewish community.

  4. Fernando,

    Good analysis, I could understand more about the author.

    To begin with, you said that the author connected with the book. In my opinion, I think you are absolutely correct. The reason being is because the main character in the book, has the same name as the author, which is Spielgelman. An example to enhance this idea are cousins. Cousins connect with each other since they have the same last name, which therefore means that cousins come from the same family tree line. Coming from the same tree line is a huge connection since not only do you have the same last name, but also because you might have similar traces of DNA (Note that same last names will not always mean that you are cousins). Coming back to the book, the author's connection to the main character is even bigger than cousins since not only do they have the same name, but the author also makes the character feel what he feels. When a writer writes a story, the main character is most likely to act and feel similar to the author's mood, since the author will work best according to his mood, which will affect everything in the story. Adding on, to explain, if his mood is happy, the story will be happy because he is being affect by that mood. If the story is sad, the ending will be terrible, and vice versa. If author's mood affects how the character will be, then Spiegelman (main character) has to connect to Spiegelman (author).

    A question I have after reading is, why did the author choose pigs, mice and cats for the characters? The reason I ask this is because it was unclear to me why the author did that. Another reason I ask this question is because of Andrew's and Jorge's comment. In their comment, they come up with the same question, so I suggest answering my question to answer not only for me, but for everyone of us.