The Complete Maus Essay

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‘The Complete Maus’ is not about experiencing the Holocaust but surviving its impact. Discuss. ‘The Complete Maus’ is a graphic novel written and illustrated by Art Spiegleman. The graphic novel was created and produced over a thirteen-year process, which revolves around the interviews that Spiegleman conducted with his father Vladek. Spiegleman decided to present his fathers story of survival in the form of ‘comic strips’ in attempt to fully show and explain the experience Vladek, and the rest of his Jewish family had in the Holocaust as accurately as possible. Throughout the text, Spiegleman explores his father’s story through the swapping of past and present times, and the relationship between father and son is presented dramatically,…show more content…
It is obvious to the reader that the Holocaust has had major impacts on Vladek, as the reader would expect considering he lived through the War, although the impacts the Holocaust had on Artie are also shown throughout the novel. Even though Artie never lived through the Holocaust, his parents were survivors, and that had significant impacts on him as both a child and an adult. An example is shown through Arties jealousy of his parent’s fascination with their first son Richieu, the son that did not make it out of the Holocaust alive. The reader gets the sense that Artie has been comparing himself with Richieu his entire life, even though they have never met. Artie feels that he will never live up to his parent’s expectations of Richieu, because he was never in the War. An example of this is shown on the last page of the graphic novel, where Vladek turns over to go to sleep and calls Artie, Richieu. “I’m tired from talking, Richieu, and it’s enough stories for now…” The way Spiegleman has represented this in the text suggests to the reader that Vladek never fully loved Artie, as much as he loved his first son Richieu. This has obviously had major impacts on Arties life, and it has all primarily been caused by the Holocaust, because Vladek and Anja never fully healed after the Holocaust. Although ‘The Complete Maus’ is based around the interviews that Spiegleman has conducted with his

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