Sunday, February 8, 2015

Maus/Persepolis _ Question Commender

Our current event in Humanities being the World War II, we have talked a lot about Hitler and the Nazi's Party in which the book Maus is based upon. 

Question One: How would Maus be different to the reader if Speigelman had used human figures instead of animals? Would we connect more to the book?

--> I believe that if the author had used human figures instead of animals the reader would be able to reflect a bit more upon the problem because we would end up taking it more seriously. I believe this because having the story be told with the people that actually experienced this would make the problem more realistic.

Question Two: Why is it that Speigelman chose rats and cats for the characters of his book? 

--> I think that these were the two animals that he chose because in some ways we think of cats being superior to mouse and rats because of their size. Just like we humans are sacred of sharks and lions. It is mostly because of their force and killing instincts. 

Question Three: Vladek had to experience a lot threw the Holocaust and certainly all the work and the separation from his family made an impact on him. What might have changed in him from that experience? 

--> Since the Holocaust was such a terrible time for the Jews I believe that everything that Vladek passed threw made him care more about material things than people because it was the cigarettes, the jam, and the chocolate bars that Anja sent him that kept him alive while he was in the camps. I believe that loosing his friends and his loved ones during the war was such a hard time for him that he chose to not get attached to anyone as much so that if something happens, he won't have to feel the same amount of pain. 

1 comment:

  1. Julia,

    good job on the blog post! I really enjoyed reading your thoughts and opinions on the book of Maus, and I found your questions really interesting. To be honest, they were actually even quite similar to my questions in my post. Anyways, I'd like to answer your generated questions with my point of view in order for us to share different perspectives of a same subjects. To begin with, I really do think that the animals included in the graphic novel are something unique to Maus. I have never seen any other book use animals to depict real people before, so I found it really creative of the author and helped connect with the reader in some ways, as it brought up some sort of theme to the story. Moving on, I think the author of Maus chose to portray people as pigs, cats, and rats due to the background story involved in all of these animals' real life traits. For instance, the Jews in the book are portrayed as rats throughout the entire sequence. As I see it, it is probably because Jews were treated as a lesser "being" and didn't earn the proper rights or respect from the German Nazi Party. Furthermore, rats are often trapped in small cages, suggesting that the analogy might refer that the Jews were all isolated in a concentration camp, without escape route. Last but not least, the Nazis used their prisoners of war, mostly Jews, as experiment tests, causing a huge suffering in them, as if they were lab rats. In fact, there is even a word in German used to classify someone who walks or acts like a Jew, called, "mauschen", which has the word "maus" in it, which directly translates from German to English as "mouse" or "rat". Secondly, I think the Nazis are depicted as cats simply because cats hunt down mice the same way as the Nazi Party chased after the Jews. Finally, Germans used to refer to the Polish as pigs, giving this identity to them, possibly. As for the last question, I think that Vladek's experience truly left a permanent mark on him for the rest of his life. He lived for a long time without basic resources and scarce supplies for his survival. In the end, I truly think that after he came back from the concentration camp, he started giving much more value to food, water, and other basic things that can't be wasted, knowing the situations he has been through. In some part in the book, Vladek even says to Artie that he should eat all of the food in his plate, suggesting that he does not tolerate any type of waste at all, even in a minimum quantity. Overall, Julia, I really enjoyed sharing my thoughts and opinions with you!

    Have a nice day!