Maus Chapter 2: Auschwitz (Time Flies)

When looking at these quotes, I struggled to interpret how they relate to the text as I felt that this chapter was truly difficult to follow. Starting with the first chapter, I was confused about Spiegelman’s use of masks on seemingly human figures. Up until this point in the comic, Spiegelman exclusively used full figures of animals, sometimes paired with masks to show “secret” identities. This was the first time he acknowledged the fact within the text that the animals were all metaphors AND that he was actually human, although this should be obvious to the reader. Sure up until this point, he pointed out that although he may have had apprehensions in choosing an animal for a certain character, this was a turning point where the reader gets explicit evidence that this is actually a story about real people. The Holocaust impacted Art, his father, and millions of other people. I had to read this section a few times, “slowly and often” like Spiegelman intended, in order to fully understand this illusion that he creates. I enforced strict participation by myself as a reader “to stitch together narrative meaning” like Chute encourages readers to do while consuming comics. Throughout the rest of the chapter, I had to continue fully analyzing each and every page at a much slower pace than I normally do in order to completely comprehend Spiegelman’s intentions in this part of the comic.

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