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IN PICTURES: Holocaust memoir ‘Maus’ banned by school board for cartoon mouse nudity, cussing

Among the “naked pictures” considered offensive by the McMinn County School Board are depictions of Jews, stripped naked, heading to the gas chambers of Auschwitz.

IN PICTURES: Holocaust memoir ‘Maus’ banned by school board for cartoon mouse nudity, cussing
Maus / ReadComicsOnline
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Citing “the naked pictures”, “cussing” and suicide, a Tennessee school board has removed the Pulitzer Prize-winning graphic novel Maus: A Survivor's Tale, which details artist Art Spiegelman's family's experience of the Holocaust and in Nazi concentration camps, from its continued use in its schools.

The McMinn County School Board voted on January 10 to remove the novel, which was completed in 1992 and was built around interviews conducted by the artist that depicts his father Vladek and mother Anja.

Board member Mike Cochran objected to the “idea that we have to have this kind of material in the class in order to teach history.”

Maus / ReadComicsOnline

“Not saying that there is not important material, I've read it and read through all of it and the parts it talks about his father, the father is the guy that went through the Holocaust, I really enjoyed, I liked it. There were other parts that were completely unnecessary.”

Maus / ReadComicsOnline

The “completely unnecessary” parts include depictions of the artist, Art, “cussing out” his father Vladek. “I don't really know how that teaches our kids any kind of ethical stuff. It's just the opposite, instead of treating his father with some kind of respect, he treated his father like he was the victim.”

Artist Art Spiegelman's mother's own suicide in 1968 at the age of 56 is also depicted in the novel.

Maus / ReadComicsOnline

“You have all this stuff in here, again, reading this to myself it was a decent book until the end. I thought the end was stupid to be honest with you,” said Cochran.

Another area of concern for the school board is that Vladek relates to his son about losing his virginity with a woman who is not the artist's.

Maus / ReadComicsOnline

Board member Tony Allman said we “don't need to enable or somewhat promote this stuff.”

“It shows people hanging, it shows them killing kids, why does the educational system promote this kind of stuff, it is not wise or healthy.”

Maus / ReadComicsOnline

The artist's older brother Richieu was mercy killed by a family member who chose to poison the children rather than let them be taken by Nazis during the war.

Maus / ReadComicsOnline

A press release from the McMinn County School Board stated in part:

Taken as a whole, the Board felt this work was simply too adult-oriented for use in our schools.

Spiegelman told media that he was “baffled” by the decision. “It’s leaving me with my jaw open, like, ‘What?’”

This story was contributed to by numerous Rebel News staffers who have read and will continue to recommend Maus.

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