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The plot of this comic is to show what the Jewish peoples went through and how they were treated. I am a MAUS believe it or not, My family migrated here in 1920's. I may only be 14 years old, but this is a story I love and will give to my child, and their child, and their child's child.


It says here

"Also the German verb 'mauscheln' (which visually includes the word 'Maus' - mouse) means originally 'to talk like a Jew"

I find this a little bit of a stretch, to say the least. That word has long come out of use, and as it doesn't bear any etymological connection to "Maus", it's hard to believe that it was on Spiegelman's mind (especially as I understand he doesn't speak any german). —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:58, 12 January 2008 (UTC)

Being german, I can assure you guys that the etymology of the word "mauscheln" has nothing to do with the word "maus". No idea regarding the jew connection though. (talk) 23:41, 30 November 2010 (UTC)

Mauscheln has distant etymological ties to Moses. I've got multiple sources (related to the book, too) that explain it, and I'll be including it into a reworked version of the article soon. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 06:29, 1 February 2012 (UTC)

And the current meaning of "mauscheln" in german is not to "talk like a jew" but to do things in conspiracy or to do business on a base of relationship - which could be somehow a antisemitic stereotype. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:47, 9 October 2012 (UTC)


Does anyone know how to put a disambiguation panel at the top, to make clear that there is an entry about a tank after the one about the comic book?2toise 03:41, 21 Oct 2003 (UTC)

Not a novel[edit]

The back cover of this book, identifies it as memoir/history. [1]. I am changing the article to reflect that. Merecat 22:52, 13 February 2006 (UTC)

From Graphic novel: ...and even non-fiction are stocked by libraries and bookstores as "graphic novels" (similar to the manner in which dramatic stories are included in "comic" books). Yes, it's not a novel but neither are many works (Joe Sacco's reportage for example). Graphic novel refers to the form rather than the genre. We have the marketing people of the late 80's to thank for this. Maus is not a novel but it is a Graphic Novel. Peteashton 02:26, 14 February 2006 (UTC)

Simply because marketers use this term does not mean that the whole world is beholden to it. Experts in the field prefer "comics" or "graphic narrative." See articles by Hillary Chute for further discussion. I think it's better to rely on experts than marketers and bookstores when it comes to this sort of terminology. Even if you reject this statement, Barnes and Noble stocks Maus in the "Biography" section, not the "Graphic Novel" section. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:16, 14 April 2010 (UTC)

Just how Maus is classified is a matter of much debate, covered by a large number of sources. I'll be working that into both the lead and body, with sources. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 06:31, 1 February 2012 (UTC)


Is "Plot" the best word to use here? "Story" seems better to me, if only because it is a memoir, albeit a rather unconventional one. Thoughts?--Sean Black (talk) 23:40, 13 February 2006 (UTC)

Agree - it's a story, not a plot.

Merecat 23:45, 13 February 2006 (UTC)

My revert[edit]

I just rollbacked some edits when I meant only to revert. My apologies. The reason I returned to the previous version is that I felt it was clearer and I preferred the writing. Cheers, SlimVirgin (talk) 17:48, 5 May 2006 (UTC)


Sections are listified, contains OR in the section on the choices of animals used, and needs better referencing. Also needs to be more comprehensive. Maus was a big deal, this article needs to explore that in greater depth. Hiding Talk 08:33, 27 October 2006 (UTC)

Fictional Mouse and Rats???[edit]

i question categoring maus in "fictional mouse and rats". its supposed to be a memoir of Art Spiegelman Father. So why put under that?—The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) .

I actually agree with removing it but I can see why someone would put it in that category. I'll wait for other opinions before deleting. Pascal.Tesson 03:34, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
I'd agree with removing it. It's not exactly fiction, and it's not exactly about mice - they're just a graphical metaphor. Like Pascal.Tesson, though, I can see why someone would put it in that category, if they'd just scanned the article. Gamesmaster 18:35, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
I couldn't agree more with all the above. —Lesfer (t/c/@) 21:26, 18 August 2006 (UTC)

British as Fish?[edit]

The claim that British were portrayed as Fish has been inserted at least twice into the article, and twice reverted. It would be nice if we could get some confirmation. Maybe something about the page number on which they appear, or better yet a scan of the panel? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) .

I wasn't aware that the British were actually portrayed in the novel, and I've read it reasonably recently - it might be difficult to find a citation for the British as fish. Gamesmaster 15:51, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
ADDED: Yes, it's been done again. The IP address that does it each time keeps changing. I've been unable to lay my hands on a copy of Maus to check through it, so we can't disprove it: should we ask the most recent user to find a page number where the British are shown? Otherwise I'm going to remove it. Gamesmaster 18:33, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
I've just browsed through the two volumes and I don't see any fish (or any British for that matter) whatsoever. I think that should be removed. I'm suspicious of the Swedes as deer as well, because I don't see Swedes or deer anywhere, but it's possible that I may have missed them in my cursory search. I can confirm that Jews as mice, Germans as cats, Americans as dogs, and French as frogs (except Spiegelman's French wife is a mouse) are correct. --JamesAM 22:29, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
I'm planning to re-read Maus in the next few weeks so that I can solve these kinds of problems. In the meantime, I'm removing the british fish. Pascal.Tesson 22:48, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
  • I have the two volume versions, and in volume II on pages 124 and 125 Swedes are represented as stags, and on page 131 bottom left panel fish are in a jeep flying the Union flag. I am thus replacing the British fish. Hiding Talk 22:56, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
I guess this is why collaboration of the month works. :-) Pascal.Tesson 23:28, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
Thanks for citing. Sorry I missed that. I'll confirm the Roma/Gypsy as gypsy moth on page 133 of vol. 2. --JamesAM 23:41, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
Yup, thanks for looking it up. So it's all good. Gamesmaster 13:28, 14 June 2006 (UTC)
Ya, the British and the Swedes are only found in Maus II AP Shinobi (talk) 15:17, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

British soldiers driving a jeep are portrayed as fish in the bottom left panel on page 131 of vol. II. In the CD-ROM version, Art Spiegelman explains why he chose fish to represent the British on p. 266. Muffybaby 22:36, 30 April 2007 (UTC)muffybaby

--Yes, in MetaMaus (p. 130/hardback/First edition), Spiegelman says: "When Vladek looks for Anja after the war, he goes a large displaced persons center at Belsen. The British are in charge of that camp. I guess I could have avoided the whole issue since they just appear in the mise-en-scène for a panel or two, but I decided to give the British a walk-on part -or, as it finally resolved itself, a swim-on part. I thought about fish and chips, an island culture, fish out of water." --Polylerus (talk) 03:14, 2 September 2015 (UTC)

Fish representing which nationality[edit]

The article currently has fish representing Japanese. It had been previously established that the fish represent the British (see talk above). Page 131 of Maus II indeed shows two fish driving a jeep, flying the British Union Jack. I am deleting. --Bridgecross (talk) 04:12, 16 December 2007 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

Comics Collab[edit]

Since this is the current Comics Collaboration, I thought it might make sense to have a section on the talk page where people can point out what they've done to it, and we can discuss what needs to be done with this article specifically rather than just adding another section to the discussion on the Comics Wikiproject. I've just attempted to improve the "Animals Used" section, though I confess to still being a bit of a noob with Wikipedia and I don't think I did the links right. - Gamesmaster 16:44, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

I second that idea. As a start, I have rewritten the Overview section. Still not happy with it but it's hopefully a bit more readable. Among the things that need to be added, I think that there absolutely has to be some discussion on the impact that Maus had, its influence in American comics and comics worldwide (how many different translations?). As far as organisation, I think it's good to include in the overview section the fact that the whole thing is black and white and makes extensive use of anthropomorphism. I'm not sure there's a point to the Themes section but there should be a plot section (although that's not really an appropriate term). The Animals Use section I think has too many bullets and can someone explain to me the "deer suggest rendeer" line? I guess I'm done with my rants! Pascal.Tesson 03:17, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
There's no citation for the reindeer bit, since Spiegelmann never (as far as I can find) mentions his choices for every single animal. I found the discussion on cats and mice from one of the links, so that's not original research, and the French bit is almost exactly what he says in the comics themselves. To be fair, though, the other descriptions of allegory aren't really taken from anywhere: they just seemed obvious to me from reading the novel a few times, and so I suppose they probably do violate the No Original Research policy. Gamesmaster 09:47, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
My point was just that the "deer suggest reindeer" sounds to me like "deer suggest deer". Pascal.Tesson 18:08, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
You could be right. I'll remove it. Gamesmaster 18:26, 13 June 2006 (UTC)


I've added quite recently a short list of awards Art Spiegelman has received, including the ones for Maus (part I or II or combined). Would it be allright if I included those for Maus here as well, or is it a bit overkill? It's probably not complete either, but that's a different problem.

I personally think it's relevant. Gamesmaster 15:04, 5 July 2006 (UTC)


We have a section on the animals used and the reason some animal is chosen, but I wonder if we need a paragraph or so about predecessors / possible influences. I'm referring especially to the French classic La Bête est Morte by Edmond-François Calvo from 1944-1945. It's a story about WWII where every party is portrayed (portretted?) by a different species. Sounds familiar? Another influence may have been Blitz Wolf by Tex Avery. Not for the uses of animals, but a general influence / predecessor may have been Master Race by Al Ferstein and Bernie Kriegstein (See this French 10 page pdf for more info). Of course, this shouldn't be OR, so I have looked for some more sources, like this one or this French one. Don't know if its enough to warrant inclusion in some form, but I thought I started a discussion about it here...

An interesting idea - but I think it has the danger of straying into OR (although admittedly parts of the Animals Used section are guilty of the same crime). Perhaps if enough sources were found, we could do something along the lines of "Possible Influences?" Gamesmaster 15:06, 5 July 2006 (UTC)
i think a "see also" section with links would be fine, cites or no; it's not OR to point out predecessors or similar works. but if you wanted to talk about influences, that woudl definitely need to be sourced. --dan 23:40, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

Awards citations[edit]

Ive added an awards section as requested as the wikiproj talk page.

I had some problems sourcing some of the awards. I briefly used some wiki pages as citations, where I could not find others, however after thinking about it for a second I realised that thats probably not allowed, so Ive removed them. Also my source of the National Book Critics Circle Award nomination info ([2]) does not seem to be working as a wikilink (though In can still find it and open the page on Google, see the top link at [3]) so Ive removed that as well. Im confident that those facts are reliable, but Im afraid I have not been able to find better citations. Hueysheridan 18:10, 5 July 2006 (UTC)


"Deer may also suggest an essence of neutrality."

Why? Iron Ghost 23:16, 9 July 2006 (UTC)

No idea... it showed up on my watchlist as an anonymous user. Anyway, isn't it the Swiss who were neutral in WW2? The Scandinavian nations fought pretty fiercely against Germany if I recall correctly... Gamesmaster 10:58, 10 July 2006 (UTC)
Sweden was neutral during WWII, see Sweden during World War II. κаллэмакс 11:44, 10 July 2006 (UTC)
And Finland actually fought pretty fiercely against the Soviet Union. RCS 13:24, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
I understand that Sweden was neutral, but why do reindeer suggest neutrality? Iron Ghost 18:15, 10 July 2006 (UTC)
Seeing as deer are commonly seen as graceful, peaceful creatures, it makes sense that one could draw connections between the habits of a deer and an "essence of neutrality."
Reekie 22:18, 23 August 2006 (UTC)
That would be WP:Original research. --Thnidu (talk) 23:49, 23 August 2015 (UTC)

Impact of Maus[edit]

I'm in the middle of looking up sources for opinions of Maus and its impact in the comic book world. Hopefully I'll have several sources to cite soon.--Undertow87 02:33, 14 July 2006 (UTC)

I finally added this section, although I wasn't sure how much I could add before sounding redundant. Finding essays or reviews slamming Maus has been difficult, so if anyone has any links, please add them. I'll add more when and if I think of anything else to add.--Undertow87 01:10, 26 July 2006 (UTC)

Umm people, please![edit]

I typed in 'Maus' in the search box on the left to find the article on 'Die Sendung mit der Maus', a children's program I used to be very fond of in my early youth and which I watched all the time when I was a kid. When entering 'Maus' however, I find myself instantly being directed to an article about the story of a survivor of the Nazi's and their deathcamps. I am not kidding when I say I find this really screwed up and a little shocking considering I was looking for an article about a children's television show. Can someone with enough knowledge on Wikipedia please make it so that when you enter 'Maus' in the searchbox, you are instantly transferred to the 'Maus (disambiguation)' page instead? Please. The sooner the better. 10:12, 11 September 2006 (UTC)

What is so shocking about it? "Maus" is the title of the (very, very famous) comic, "Die Sendung mit der Maus" is the title of a mush less famous (in English speaking countries) TV show. A huge majority of people that type in Maus will be looking for the comic: for the others, the first thing they read is that for other uses, they should click at the top of the article. The article on Maus is not shocking, disturbing, sensationalist, ... but an acuurate description of the comic, its creation and its impact. While this is obviously not what you expected, it is no big deal. There is nothing in the article that a child should not see. I really don't see the problem with the current situation, and while it would be possible to change it to your preferred situation, I don't think it would be correct, and I would oppose such a move. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, discussing pleasant and unpleasant alike. Fram 10:34, 11 September 2006 (UTC)
I have to say that I rather deplore the kind of reasoning you are presenting here. By having the keyword 'Maus' transfer users directly to the disambiguation page, nothing will be taken away even in the slightest from Wikipedia's mission to discuss both the 'pleasant and unpleasant' alike. In fact, I do not believe that I ever said anything to suggest otherwise either, in contrast to what you apparently are insinuating. As for the 'very, very famous' comic of Maus, I've frankly never even heard of it even though I am no stranger to the subject of World War II. Lastly, your comments on how the majority of people who enter the word of 'Maus' in the searchbox will supposedly be primarily looking for this comic seem rather speculative at best, and even more importantly, they speak of a biased perspective, something which seems further substantiated by your defensive attitude toward this article even though I in no way 'assaulted' nor the article, nor its content in itself. But obviously none of this really discusses the point at hand. The point is that under the current state of affairs, people who search for any of the other related 'Maus' subjects are basically getting an article about, as you yourself admitted, unrequested and unpleasant content rammed down their throats for no other reason than that an apparent enthusiast of this comic wants to proliferate its name and content to the best of his or her abilities. That is not what Wikipedia is for, and furthermore, when there are numerous articles a single keyword refers to, and one of those articles has content about a sensitive topic while also having a parallel article which covers a children's program, then there simply is no logical or rational reason why the keyword search results shouldn't directly refer to the disambuigation page instead, in order to avoid exactly this kind of dispute you and I are having now. Especially when you realise that ultimately nothing is really lost by doing this either. How you have come to believe that a simple request to have the disambiguation page link directly to a search result is akin to an act of censorship is totally beyond me.
As it is, the case you made above to remain status quo would only have validity if I were arguing that any of the other 'Maus' articles should be directly linked to over this one. I am not requesting anything even like that. I am asking for the disambuigation page instead, which is a completely neutral and reasonable request in light of the background I've shown in the previous paragraph. Again, someone please fix this. The sooner the better. 07:04, 12 September 2006 (UTC)
You are no stranger to the subject of WWII but have never heard of the Pulitzer Prize winning "Maus" (the only comic ever to get a Pulitzer Prize)? Then you should consider yourself lucky that your search for some TV series has brought you to this article about a subject that must certainly interest you... I strongly object to the reasons you attribute to me for keeping Maus as the main article when you search for Maus ("no other reason than that an apparent enthousiast...") The current situation was not created by me, I only came here to explain to you why it is so and why, IMO, it should stay so. Google searching Maus + Spiegelman (i.e. this article) gives 535,000 hits, Googling "Die Sendung mit der Maus" gives 363,000. Not a huge difference, but then again, there are a few other things to consider. "Maus" is the correct title of the comic, only part of the title of the TV series. Maus was originally made in English, Die Sendung in German (which means that looking for Maus on German Wikipedia may give different results). In fact, when looking for pages about "Die Sendung mit der Maus" written in English, I only get 722 Google Hits. Maus + Spiegelman gets 330,000 Google Hits for pages writen in English. So on an English language Wikipedia, it is logical to go to the well-known article directly, and only give a link to the almost unknown indirectly, unless you give in the correct name to start with. Finally, it is standard practice on Wikipedia to point a search term directly to the most famous item with that name. Looking for "Paris" gets you immediately the city Paris (in France), not the disambiguation page, even though I may well have been looking for the adventures of Paris Hilton, for the Greek hero, or for Paris, Texas. Hey look, even that last one gets you to the city, and not to the movie! So in short: it is normal practice on Wikipedia that a search word gets you straight to the article about the (in English language) most famous subject with that name (certainly when it is the exact same term). I'm sorry that you didn't know this comic, don't believe it is very famous, and find it shocking that you get the article for this comic when you are looking for a German TV series that is hardly known in English language speaking countries and that has a different complete title, but I'm not sorry enough by far to make any changes to the current situation. You can always post your problem at Wikipedia:Third opinion or Wikipedia:Requests for comment if you want more input about it of course. Fram 07:50, 12 September 2006 (UTC)
The article already has a disambiguation header ("For other uses...") In English, "Maus" refers to the graphic novel, not the very last word of a German cartoon. If some one finds the wrong article, they can use the disambiguation page (at the top) or use what the "Search" button instead of the "Go" button. "Maus" is not such a substantial part of the cartoon's title that I consider your mistake to be likely to be repeated. Most people who look for that cartoon will type in the title. Besides, people should not be afraid of the unpleasant in life. - BalthCat 01:12, 13 September 2006 (UTC)
good grief, all of you! i agree that it's a fairly silly request, but what's the big deal? there are people who are upset by any mention of the holocaust, and directing to a disambiguation page is not a tragedy. i agree, the majority of maus searchers will be looking for the comic, and hey on that disambiguation page they will find it. or they can just look on the search page (personally, i think that Go button is a bad idea generally). --dan 23:52, 15 October 2006 (UTC)
Just wanted to point out that Maus isn't the only comic to have won the Pulitzer Prize. Doonesbury won it back in the '70s. Just sayin'. — (talk) 23:38, 18 March 2008 (UTC)

life in Poland before and during the Second World War[edit]

During WWII Sosnowiec was in Reich, not exactly in Poland. Xx236 09:36, 5 October 2006 (UTC)

When Did Art's Father Die?[edit]

I'm curious if Art Spigelman's father lived to see the publication of Maus, and if so, is there an interview to record his reaction? I just read Maus 1 for the first time and have requested the second through the library, so maybe my answer will come in that section.

This isn't neccesarily a suggestion for inclusion in the article, simlpy curioustiy on the part of a reader. -Tom

Vladek died in 1982, when Art had just started writing Volume 2. Volume 1 had been at least partly serialized in RAW, but not yet collected, I think (it'd be nice to have more about the publication chronology in our article). I don't think there's been anything in print about what Vladek thought of the book in progress. ←Hob 07:20, 27 November 2006 (UTC)

Actually, it says something about it in Maus 1. :) WhatTheFace? 16:33, 5 March 2007 (UTC)

  • The date is August 18th, 1982. It is in the final panel of Maus II. vLaDsINgEr 20:58, 28 May 2007 (UTC)

Publisher info[edit]

Should the publishing info (publisher, dates) in the box at the top of the page reflect only the original publication of the book? After all, it is still being published and distributed, currently by Pantheon. The reason I ask is because the information seems to be unsure about which version it is talking about--citing the 1972 version and then "self-published" as the publisher (referring to the first printing of the version that is discussed in the article). --Krishva 18:44, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

In any case, even though Pantheon is owned by Random House, the publisher info "Pantheon, Random House" and the link to Random House was misleading, since "works continue to be published under these imprints with editorial independence" (Pantheon Books article). I just changed that. -- Martin de la Iglesia 15:19, 24 July 2007 (UTC)


I can't find "metabiographical" in the dictionary, which makes me doubt its an actual word. Even if it is, most people are not going to know what it means. There must be a better word to use than that.

I think its "autobiographical." — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:25, 27 November 2011 (UTC)

MoMA show[edit]

Perhaps something on how it had a show at the Museum of Modern Art in NYC? 17:44, 9 May 2007 (UTC)

'Animals used' section original research[edit]

I've tagged the 'animals used' section with the original research flag. There are numerous issues that I see...

  • References used in the section include the transcript of a lecture by a professor (which has no weight unless that professor can be cited as an authority on the subject of the book), and a page which returns a 404 not found error. There are too few sources.
  • There are numerous cases of speculation about species-to-trait links without cited proof. That Jews are portrayed as mice can be derived from the work itself. Why they are portrayed that way must be cited by another source, like an interview with the author. Examples of what I'm talking about: "The Jews, as mice, can be seen as weak and helpless victims, as well as satirizing the Nazi portrayal of Jews as vermin." We need proof that this was Art Spiegelman's intention if it is going to be said on Wikipedia. The mice can be seen that way, but that may not be the author's intent, and as Wikipedia editors we cannot be the judges of that.
  • Other examples: "Spiegelman explained that he chose pigs in good faith because of their resemblance to famous American cartoon characters like Miss Piggy and Porky Pig." If this is true, we need a source that proves that he said this. "It seems to represent an exotic, mysterious personality that was and still is the common perception of the Romani people." As written, this is pure speculation; it even contains the word "seems".

If interpretations are made about why things were written in certain ways in the book, they must be cited. Preferrably, this would be done by quotation by the author himself, or they should in fairness be removed as original research. Skybunny 22:26, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

I was going to tag it myself. Yes- if it can't be cited, it should be removed. Badgerpatrol 05:06, 10 October 2007 (UTC)

How about instead of being lazy and slapping a tag on stuff you go through the links and find cites? It took me five minutes to find citable references for this section. Suggesting removing it without even lifting a finger to fix it is even more contemptible.pschemp | talk 19:36, 28 November 2007 (UTC)

Maybe you can also find something to prove the connection to Carl Barks, which I just removed because it's not convincing at all. --Martin de la Iglesia (talk) 10:25, 9 December 2007 (UTC)
Are you describing my behaviour as "contemptible" pschemp? Badgerpatrol (talk) 12:04, 9 December 2007 (UTC)

I think the interpretations and suggestions on the nation/animal pairings should be completely left out. These are readers' interpretations and could mean so many other things. For example I had totally different feelings about why Americans are dogs, Germans are cats, Pols are pigs, etc. Why don't we leave this to the reader's imagination? If Spiegelman himself gives clues that's OK, but in any other case I would rather stick to the facts. Zoli79 (talk) 22:31, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

I agree with most of the comments above. I've made revisions to the section and removed the tag. --RSLxii 21:49, 8 November 2010 (UTC)


I'm moving this to my page so I can make a better version of it. chow. Benny Lava —Preceding comment was added at 18:58, 3 December 2007 (UTC)

I think it's ciao.

Some heavy edits[edit]

OK, I am deleting the entire 'story' section, which describes only the very first sequence of a two-volume graphic novel, and is irrelevant anyway. I'm also deleting the speculative work in the section about the animals. I have different speculations, but that's not the point. Wikipedia is not a blog. Ethan Mitchell (talk) 20:45, 15 January 2008 (UTC)


I would really like to know which languages Maus has been translated into. I know that I have seen the German version in a bookstore, but I'm curious what other languages it's been translated into. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:14, 8 July 2008 (UTC)

I've been looking for such a list myself, with no luck. I have refs that state it has been translated into up to 18 languges, but without stating them. I know of French, German, Hebrew and Japanese for certain (they have the Japanese one at one of the local libraries where I live---oversized and ugly). CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 07:06, 19 April 2012 (UTC)
Add to that list Korean, Hungarian, Swedish, Finnish, Polish, Norwegian (bokmål)‬, Italian, Spasnish and Catalan. Still not a complete list. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 03:49, 8 May 2012 (UTC)
And simplified Chinese. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 03:51, 8 May 2012 (UTC)

WikiProject Comics B-Class Assesment required[edit]

This article needs the B-Class checklist filled in to remain a B-Class article for the Comics WikiProject. If the checklist is not filled in by 7th August this article will be re-assessed as C-Class. The checklist should be filled out referencing the guidance given at Wikipedia:Version 1.0 Editorial Team/Assessment/B-Class criteria. For further details please contact the Comics WikiProject. Comics-awb (talk) 17:05, 31 July 2008 (UTC)

History and Maus[edit]

I feel it might be useful to correlate the historical events of WWII with the events in Maus, with internal links referring to the events where possible. A timeline of this sort has been worked out here. What do other people think?

Interesting enough, but I think it's way beyond the scope of the article. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 07:03, 19 April 2012 (UTC)


The opening line of this article states that this book is an autobiography by Art Spiegelman. Isn't this book a biography of the father (Vladek Spiegelman) ... much more so than an autobiography of his son, Art? There is little -- if anything -- of the life of Art being detailed ... it's all about the life / experiences of Vladek. Am I incorrect? Thoughts? Thanks. ( (talk) 15:49, 5 November 2009 (UTC))

Actually, there is no lack of autobiographical material in Maus. Give it another read. In very large part, it's about the relationship between Art and Vladek, as well as all the stuff like "Prisoner on the Hell Planet", Art's visit with Pavel, his shrink, in Chapter 8, etc etc etc. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 07:02, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

Vladek Spiegelman[edit]

The link for Vladek Spiegelman (Art's father) redirects back to this article on Maus. I think that Vladek Spiegelman merits a separate article on himself and his life / biography. Any thoughts on this? Thanks. ( (talk) 16:08, 5 November 2009 (UTC))

Maus is the story of Art and Vladek Spiegelman. Is there another book about Vladek that isn't about Maus? What would you hope would be in the article? CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 06:39, 1 February 2012 (UTC)

Okay, wow.[edit]

This article needs some serious attention; one of the most important works in the comic/GN genre sat at C-class with lots of very obvious issues? Anyone else working on WikiProject Comics feel like helping out and turning this one around? --Kitfug (talk) 00:11, 28 August 2010 (UTC)

I'm working on it now. I hope to have a significantly reworked article up within the next few weeks, but I'll need others to help finish it. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 06:41, 1 February 2012 (UTC)

Bobrowski influence?[edit]

This reminds me of Johannes Bobrowski's "Mäusefest" in "Mäusefest und andere Erzählungen, Berlin 1965". (talk) 01:25, 21 September 2010 (UTC)


"The French being frogs recalls an oft-used nickname," What is this nickname and why does the page not say it. implications have no place in an encyclopedia. (talk) 04:12, 2 October 2010 (UTC)

The nickname is 'Frogs'! (talk) 22:22, 17 November 2014 (UTC)

English portrayed as fish?[edit]

I have to wonder how the English being portrayed as fish was extrapolated from the text. The only time you see a fish is on pg. 291 where two of them are driving a Jeep. I thought they were Russian, since the Jeep had a star on it and the Americans were already portrayed as dogs. How could one say that they were British? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:50, 6 April 2011 (UTC)

In my copy, the vehicle the fish are driving is flying the Union Jack. --Bridgecross (talk) 19:39, 12 December 2011 (UTC)

New version[edit]

I have been working on a new version of this article for some time. It is not nearly complete, but still superior to what was there. Hopefully, bringing it out in the open will encourage people to help me complete it (fill in what's missing, tighten up what's there, better organize it, copyedit, etc etc). This is definitely one article that could easily achieve FA-status if given the attention it deserves. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 06:59, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

Thank you for the hard work you've put into this. I recommend putting the article up for peer review, and then submit it to the Guild of Copy-editors. Then it can be sent to GA and/or FA review. I would like to see this article featured on the front page one day. --Harizotoh9 (talk) 07:25, 23 April 2012 (UTC)
That's my intention, but I think the empty sections should be filled in first, or all the advice I could expect to get is "you should fill in those blank sections". CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 08:30, 23 April 2012 (UTC)
Another thank you. This looks much, much better. --RSLxii 15:38, 27 April 2012 (UTC)

One quick quibble before GA[edit]

The work on this article that Curly Turkey has done is quite impressive and I would very much like to see it promoted to GA. This is good stuff. If time permits I'll start the GA review myself but just in case I don't have the time or if this can be seen as a bit of a conflict of interest (myself being a Polish editor) I do want to note one slight problem with the sentence "Even in post-war Poland it is said that Poles continue to drive off and even kill returning Jews." - this is presented in Wikipedia voice but in fact it's not even the "Spiegelman voice" --> in fact it's from a review of Maus by LaCapra (note that I am not disputing the truth value of this statement). It's LaCapra interpreting Spiegelman's comic and stating it as how he sees SOME of the CHARACTERS in the comic perceive it (so it's not even "LaCapra voice" - yes, this stuff gets complicated with this post modern multiple narrator thing). So you got a reviewer describing an author who's portraying characters who are expressing an opinion. Somehow this should be clarified. Like I said, I'm a Polish editor, and perhaps I'm being overly sensitive about this - on the other hand, I've read a number of interviews with Spiegelman, met him very briefly once in person, and generally he tries to be very very careful in distinguishing between the roles of his subjects and his own views. I think in this instance a slight tweak would be sufficient.

Otherwise, I'm quite impressed with the work done here on what could (potentially) be a difficult subject. More of this kind of Wikipedia-editing please.VolunteerMarek 06:28, 9 May 2012 (UTC)

I appreciate your concern there (and your kind words). What happened was that I paraphrased the line "Whatever you do, don't go back to Sosnowiec. The Poles are still killing Jews there!" that was quoted in LaCapra's book (originally from the last panel on page 131 of Maus Vol II, page 291 in my single-volume copy) as "Even in post-war Poland it is said that Poles continue to drive off and even kill returning Jews." "it is said" was meant to imply "it is said by characters in the book", but obviously that's not how it came across. I'll figure out how to reword it to make it clear. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 09:41, 9 May 2012 (UTC)
How does this work? CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 11:45, 9 May 2012 (UTC)
That works. Thanks.VolunteerMarek 13:29, 9 May 2012 (UTC)

Comprehensiveness quibble[edit]

Here's my quick quibble. Polish wiki has two (unreferenced...) paragraphs about the reception in Poland. This seems to be not mentioned in the article at all. I have doubts if the article can claim to be comprehensive without such a mention. If no English sources exist I'd suggest asking on WT:POLAND for some assistance from Polish speaking editors. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk to me 05:39, 15 May 2012 (UTC)

Is the issue that the Polish reception wasn't covered, or that there was something significant about the Polish reception that wasn't covered? It doesn't surprise me that the Polish reception would be covered in the Polish article, or the German reception in the German, etc etc etc. The book's been translated into 30 languages. Was there something about the Polish reception that would be notable to English readers? CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 12:43, 15 May 2012 (UTC)
Actually, I've come across some sources with interesting material on why it took until 2001 for a Polish tranlation to come out. I'll find a way to work that stuff in. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 13:11, 15 May 2012 (UTC)
Since this is a potentially controversial area and may be difficult subject to write about, I'd suggest letting Spiegelman speak for himself on this particular subject as much as possible. Both critics and praisers have misunderstood some of the allegory - hell, when I first read the book I did too - but Spiegelman actually explains the issues very well, AFAICR.VolunteerMarek 13:41, 15 May 2012 (UTC)
I'll write something up (with refs) and post it in this discusion before adding it to the main article so you guys can take a look at it first. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 23:13, 15 May 2012 (UTC)
I'd say that the reception in countries the comic portrays is important, so I'd say that this article should include reception of the comic in Poland and Germany. Likely, Israel should be covered, too. The proposed section below addresses the Polish coverage, through I believe it could be expanded. For future reference, Google Books search ([4]) suggests there are many reliable sources, although unfortunately none of them are currently easily accessible online. On the bright side, the official Polish page of the comic offers some nice citations: [5]. For criticism, see (potentially unreliable): [6], [7] - but likely reliable enough if one wanted to add a note about fringe/far-right radical protests. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk to me 18:54, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
As I don't know Polish, I think it'll require someone who does to write up something using those sources. I ran a few things through Google Translate, but the translations came out as gibberish at key points. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 20:31, 17 May 2012 (UTC)

Here's a rough draft of something that I may be able to incorporate into the article. They won't be separate subsections, as I have them here---I've only done that for convenience. If someone can point mean to more sources, it would be great. Not surprisingly, simply googling "Maus Polish" doesn't return a lot of helpful hits---mostly articles that mention Vladek was a Polish Jew.

BTW, "Metamaus" is available on google books, though some pages are not included and some made difficult to read [8]. Spiegelman talks both about the pigs as well as reception in Poland in several places. It would be good to incorporate some of the info from it into this article.VolunteerMarek 20:41, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
I'm not able to access MetaMaus. Maybe it's blocked where I am (Japan)? CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 21:00, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
Huh, weird. I don't think Japan blocks any kind of access to gbooks. Try [9] or [10]. Maybe it's a font/script/character kind of thing.VolunteerMarek 21:38, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
I can only view the general information page for MetaMaus. I can't view inside the book at all. I might just end up buying it. It's something I wanted to get eventually anyways (if it weren't for someone guarding the pursestrings...) CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 22:51, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
If you have access to it, then if you could throw some interesting quotes and page numbers at me, I could incorporate it into what I have. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 00:50, 18 May 2012 (UTC)

I think the international coverage is good enough for a GA. More could be added for a FA, if that happens I'll probably help out with some Polish sources. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| reply here 15:56, 6 June 2012 (UTC)

(Maus in Polish)[edit]

Three tranlslations in particluar were important to Spiegelman to have done: French, as his wife was French, and because of the sophisticated comics tradition there; German, given the book's topic; and Polish. Poland was the location of the majority of the book, and Polish was language of his parents and, he says, was his own mother tongue in infancy. The German reception was positive—Maus was a best-seller, and even found its way into classrooms. The Polish translation ran into difficulties, however, and did not appear until 2001. As early as when he planned a 1987 research visit to Poland, he was questioned about the Poles being depicted as pigs by a Polish consulate official who had approved Spiegelman's visa. He was made to understand that, in Poland, calling someone a swine was a much stronger insult than in the US. Publishers and commentators since then had hesitated to touch the book for fear of protests and boycotts.[1]

(Maus in Israel)[edit]

In the Israeli publication of Maus, a few panels had to be changed when the portrayal of one of the minor characters was objected to by a descendent.[2] This Hebrew version of the first volume of the book was indifferently or negatively recieved, and the second never appeared.[3] This may have highlighted a difference between the self-images of Israeli Jews and American Jews—the resistance fighter versus the timid and weak diaspora Jew,[4] a perceived self-hatred that one Israeli writer called "the diaspora sickness".[5][a]

(Poles as pigs)[edit]

Some commentators expressed concern that the Poles were depicted as pigs—a much greater insult in Polish culture than in American culture. Pigs, and pork, are also viewed as being non-kosher, or unclean, in Jewish culture.[6] Critics have said that the portrayal of Poles is unbalanced—that, while some Poles are seen as helping Jews, they are often shown to do so for self-serving reasons.[7]



  1. ^ Translated from Hebrew by Marilyn Reizbaum.[5]

Works cited[edit]

Mozzocco, J. Caleb (2011-12-01). "Balloonless". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved 2012-05-18.  Text " Art Spiegelman and Hillary Chute’s MetaMaus

" ignored (help)

Tzadka, Saul (2012-02-02). "Maus: Revisited". Alondon. Retrieved 2012-05-18.  External link in |publisher= (help)
Reizbaum, Marilyn (2000). Silberstein, Laurence Jay, ed. Mapping Jewish Identities. NYU Press. ISBN 978-0-8147-9769-3. Retrieved 2012-05-18. 
Obst, Peter. "A Commentary on Maus by Art Spiegelman". American Council for Polish Culture. Retrieved 2012-05-16. 
Pekar, Harvey (1990). "Blood and Thunder". The Comics Journal (Fantagraphics) (135): 27–34. ISSN 0194-7869.  Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)
Weschler, Lawrence (2001). "Pig Perplex". Lingua Franca (magazine) 11 (5). Retrieved 2012-05-15.  Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)

Guild of Copy editors[edit]

I recommend sending it to the WP:WikiProject Guild of Copy Editors. I would myself, but there's other articles I wish to send there, and they only like having people nominate one article at a time. --Harizotoh9 (talk) 09:22, 20 May 2012 (UTC)

Temporarily taking down from GA review[edit]

Okay, I've broken down and put in an order on MetaMaus. I'm going to take this article down from GA review for now. When I get the book, I'll add whatever is interesting from it, incorporate the international reception stuff I wrote above, and then submit it to the Guild of Copy Editors. It'll probably be a couple weeks, because I'm ordering MetaMaus from overseas (I'm in Japan). CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 06:48, 24 May 2012 (UTC)
I'd keep it at GA, the article is good enough for it. MetaMaus will help you propel it to the next step afterward (FA). --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| reply here 15:57, 6 June 2012 (UTC)
I've got MetaMAUS now, and have added a bunch of things to the article from it already. I already put the article up for the Guild of Copy Editors. Do you think I should take it down and put it up for GA? CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 21:39, 6 June 2012 (UTC)
I agree with Piotrus, it's most definitely GA ready (I'd pass it). And good job on adding the potentially controversial international stuff in a neutral manner.
One thing: a footnote right now says "His Polish name was Władisław, of which "Władec" is a diminutive. "Vladek" is the Russian version of this name, which was picked up when Silesia was controlled by Russia. ". First it really should be "Władysław" and "Władek" and second, more importantly, Silesia was never really controlled by Russia. I know this is straight from Spiegelman, but the first are simple phonetic misspellings and the second one is a bit of confusion over geography and history. Czestochowa and Sosnowiec (where Wladek was from) are right on the border of Silesia and Malopolska (Little Poland). Traditionally they have NOT been considered part of Silesia, although after some reorganization of administrative districts that occurred in the 1990's they got put into the Silesian Voivodeship which is probably why Spiegelman (or MetaMAUS) says they're in Silesia. But they're really not.
The problem is that phrasing it that way makes it sound like Russia at some point controlled Silesia proper which they did not. They DID control Czestochowa and Sosnowiec but putting these into "Silesia" is a bit like putting Maryland into "Dixie" (American analogy). So I would just say "which was picked up when this part of Poland was controlled by Russia". That way the essence of the source is preserved but we avoid the confusion.VolunteerMarek 02:05, 7 June 2012 (UTC)
I changed the bit about Silesia to "the area in which Vladek lived". I'm not sure what to do about the spellings---they are, indeed, straight out of MetaMAUS, which means if I change them, anyone with that book intheir hands may just go and changed them back some day. I think it might be better to include a footnote (to the footnote?) noting the discrepency. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 03:34, 7 June 2012 (UTC)
Well, I think that one is minor so probably can just leave it alone for now or include a footnote - it's nitpicking. Up to you.VolunteerMarek 03:37, 7 June 2012 (UTC)
I went with the footnote-to-a-footnote thing, mainly because I like the whole "meta-" aspect to doing that. I've also put the article back up for GA review. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 12:42, 7 June 2012 (UTC)
Russia controlled small parts of Silesia; after all the Triangle of Three Emperors was there. But it never controlled all of it. Footnote is good. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| reply here 19:04, 7 June 2012 (UTC)

Vladek's accent in the Polish edition[edit]

An IP added this in the language section:

In polish translation Vladek speaks with Yiddish accent, however it is pointed out that real Vladek was fluent in Polish.

Interesting enough, but:

  1. If it belongs, it belongs with the other stuff about translations, as it is not what Spiegelman wrote.
  2. It is unreferenced.

If someone can find a citation for this, I'll incorporate it into the bit on the Polish translation. So far, I've had no luck finding such a citation. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 23:12, 4 June 2012 (UTC)

It's in "Translator note" for polish edition. Translator (Piotr Bikont) remarks that it's been a problem for him to how to represent Vladek's broken english. He thought about "American learning polish"-style, but chooses Jewish style, because "it's better to see Vladek as Polish Jew." About Vladek fluency in Polish - it is mentioned in "Translator note", but it is implied also in book. (talk) 23:36, 21 July 2012 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Maus/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Tea with toast (talk · contribs) 20:51, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

I look forward to reviewing this article. I would like to alert contributing editors that checklinks found a broken link in the article. Please address this in the meantime while I complete the review. Thanks! --Tea with toast (話) 20:51, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for taking the time to do this. I've fixed the broken link issue by finding another source—the source I was using seems to have vanished from Google's memory... CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 21:28, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

Final Review[edit]

GA review – see WP:WIAGA for criteria

  1. Is it reasonably well written?
    A. Prose quality:
    B. MoS compliance for lead, layout, words to watch, fiction, and lists:
  2. Is it factually accurate and verifiable?
    A. References to sources:
    B. Citation of reliable sources where necessary:
    --Excellent job with all the sources. I appreciate the citation style you have used.
    C. No original research:
  3. Is it broad in its coverage?
    A. Major aspects:
    B. Focused:
  4. Is it neutral?
    Fair representation without bias:
  5. Is it stable?
    No edit wars, etc:
  6. Does it contain images to illustrate the topic?
    A. Images are copyright tagged, and non-free images have fair use rationales:
    B. Images are provided where possible and appropriate, with suitable captions:
    --Great job bringing in images from other related topics to help dress the article up.
  7. Overall:
    Pass or Fail:
    --This is an impressive and well crafted article. I can see that I lot of hard work went into detailing the background information and sources. I can't think of much that is left to do to improve the article. Great job! --Tea with toast (話) 23:56, 4 July 2012 (UTC)


WikiProject Guild of Copy Editors
WikiProject icon A version of this article was copy edited by a member of the Guild of Copy Editors. The Guild welcomes all editors with a good grasp of English and Wikipedia's policies and guidelines to help in the drive to improve articles. Visit our project page if you're interested in joining! If you have questions, please direct them to our talk page.

Per request, worked through this. Comments:

  • I simplified many complex passages and changed topic groupings. I would really appreciate a close read.
  • I removed many "in the English-speaking world" qualifiers from the description of comics as no context was presented for it. I may have been too bold, but if the point is salient, it needs to be better described, and so often repeated. E.g., does it mean that in other languages comics were already taken seriously, or that even now, they are taken seriously only among English speakers?
  • It would be better if the names of people with critical views were included, rather than the weaselly "some".
  • I'm curious whether any critic has proposed that Spiegleman's choice of pigs for Poles and his stereotypic protrayal of Germans (Aryans?) is a deliberate acknowledgement by him of his own racism. If so, that would seem to be salient.
  • Many references refer to Spieglman's writings. It would be great to see secondary sources instead.
  • I eventually purged most of the "eventually"s.
  • The piece refers to "unidiomatic expressions", citing "and here my troubles began". That doesn't seem like a good example of poor language skills, unidiomatic or not.
  • I added Richieu to the list of characters, but don't know his dates. Help!
  • The heavy use of sfn produces a long list of not-very-informative notes. One alternative is to combine a named harv ref with the rp templated. E.g., <ref name=spiegelman>{{harvnb|Spiegelman|1999|123...}}</ref>...<ref name=spiegelman/>{{rp|123}}. That produces a single Spiegelman note that liks to the reference and leaves the page numbers inline. I did not make this change.
Cheers. Lfstevens (talk) 21:42, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Thanks a lot for the copy edit. There are a few things I'm going to have to change or revert, however:
"in the English-speaking world": this really is necessary, but a further explanation would really be well out of scope for the article. The English, Franco-Belgian and Japanese traditions are generally considered the major comics traditions in the world. In the Franco-Belgian tradition, adult and arts comics had already been established before Spiegelman even began Maus, and the same was true even earlier in Japan. More important than that is that Japanese and Franco-Belgian comics never suffered from the level of prejudice that American comics did. Thus, while Maus was popular in France, it never had the chance to have "game-changing" impact it did in the Anglosphere. In Japan, it didn't even sell particularly well—though recognized as a "good" book, it certainly didn't convince people that comics were capable of such things. People there already knew.
Without the "English-speaking world" qualifier, readers would be led to infer that Maus' significance in changing people's attitudes towards comics was a worldwide one. It most emphatically was not.
acknowledgement by him of his own racism: In the external links section is Spiegelman's essay "Getting in Touch with my Inner Racist". It's not given in the context of Maus, however, and while there are plenty of critics (like Harvey Pekar) who've accused him of racism, I don't think that's exactly what your asking for. Is it?
"Many references refer to Spieglman's writings": The references from MetaMaus were amongst the last I added, fleshing out factual information (dates, spellings of names, etc). The vast majority of references are from secondary sources, and I think you'll find the MetaMaus references fall within WP's policies for dealing with primary sources.
"and here my troubles began": This was the example given in the source. The context was that, given that this phrase appeared so late in the book, following the Spiegelmans' loss of everything—their home, business, friends, family and only son, as well as the constant degradation, fear, running and hiding—this was a strange time to claim that Auschwitz was where his troubles began. Maybe I could make the wording clearer.
Richieu: While Richieu's death was one of the key events in the book, when I made the list of characters, I intended it to be those who have major speaking roles throughout the book. Richieu's role as a character per se is pretty minimal in the book—there are several secodary characters whose roles as characters are more prominent.
{{rp}}: I understand the use of {{rp}}, but I disagree with it. In my opinion, the body of the article should be as free from clutter as possible. Footnotes are clutter enough, which is why I like to use {{sfnm}} to bundle footnotes together. If I were to take an {{sfnm}} of, say, three footnotes, unbundle them and then add {{rp}}, we'd go from something that had one superscript for three citations,
Maus won the Pulitzer Prize.[23] It was...
to having six superscripts (three footnotes and three page references)
Maus won the Pulitzer Prize.[23]:100[24]:231[25]:12 It was...
an eyesore breaking up the text. The vast majority of readers will never consider looking up the citations, so I see no point in forcing such excessive information on the average reader. Citations are for verification, and should be kept out of the way unless and until soemone actually wants to or requires to verify the information—in which case, it's all at their fingertips in the reference section.
"Aryan": In the text itself, the character claims to be "German", not "Aryan". Further, the Aryan people were an ancient race that invaded India. The Nazis made unsubstantiated claims that the German people were descended from the Aryans. These claims were not examined in Spiegelman's book, and in his own interviews as well as the vast majority of Maus criticism, the word "German" is used rather than "Aryan".
CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 21:47, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

Book with details on Polish reception[edit]

I don't have access to this book to get the larger context, but in the snippet provided there is the quote, "Unfortunately, Jarzȩbski was correct in predicting that the discussion of Maus in Poland would be overshadowed by 'the pig insult'." Does anyone have access to this book? CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 21:49, 9 December 2012 (UTC)

Unresolved race labels issue[edit]

I'm glad the article was promoted, but disappointed that it was before a consensus could be reached about race labels.

I'll reiterate the issue here:

What would be the best ethnic qualifier for those depicted as pigs in Maus?
  • "Poles": Vladek is a Polish national, but is depicted as a mouse since he's Jewish. This is what the sources use, but there are difficulties with it:
  • "ethnic Poles": as per MarchOrDie, it is this "concept of 'ethnicity', which led to the events described in the subject of the article" (that is, the Holocaust).
  • "non-Jewish Poles": as per Curly Turkey, this would require qualifying every race/nationality: e.g. "Non-Jewish Germans", "Non-Jewish Americans" (all non-Jewish Americans are depicted as dogs, regardless of race), etc.

Originally, the article used "Poles". MarchOrDie changed it to "Non-Jewish Poles". I disagreed, and asked for more input, but the only one who offered any was Maunus, with:

Comment Re: nomenclature for the pig/mouse/cat ethnic distinction. :I would advice to do what sources that describe the comic do, instead of agonizing over making the least problematic of a series of problematic choices. In this way the responsibility is not wikipedia's but the responsibility of the sources. If it is necessary the statement could be given in-text attribution. If possible it would be great to find a source that explicitly discusses the way in which the pig/mouse distinction is problematic in that it accepts the notion that Jews as being by definition non-Poles.

I'd hate to think the opinions of only three editors constituted a "consensus". I see the wording as it stands as problematic, but would like to get more feedback, rahter than just simply revert. Curly Turkey (gobble) 03:16, 18 January 2013 (UTC)

I've changed the statement in the first paragraph that Jews, Germans and Poles are/were different "human races" (!) to different "nationalities and religions". This seems to avoid all of the problems stated above, and avoids using terms like "different human races", which I find inappropriate.

Lost in space (talk) 10:19, 4 August 2014 (UTC)

RIGHTGREATWRONGS has got nothing to do with this! As it stands, the article states that Jews, Germans and Poles belonged to different races.

1) This is a basic claim of Nazi ideology - which means it is certainly not a neutral point of view and could/should be deleted for that reason alone

2) Even if we accept the term 'race', it's wrong in the context of this article anyway. As stated above "all non-Jewish Americans are depicted as dogs, regardless of race". We could of course write a long-winded sentence just so that we can hang on to the term "human races". But why make things so complicated?

3) The people represented in the book certainly had different nationalities and/or religions and this is why they were categorised in the ways they were.

So why not simply avoid a highly debatable (non-neutral) term that makes everything far more complicated, when we can just write it another way that doesn't change the text, doesn't remove any important information and avoids such controversy?

Lost in space (talk) 15:02, 4 August 2014 (UTC)

You want to "avoid such controversy" by calling the Jews a religion? Good luck with that—don't forget your bulletproof vest.
As it stands, the article states that Jews, Germans and Poles belonged to different races.: in the context of the book, they are. Whether they are in real life is not something for Wikipedia to decide. Curly Turkey ⚞¡gobble!⚟ 20:53, 4 August 2014 (UTC)


In these edits I expanded the description of MetaMaus and moved that information out of the section "Publication history" and into its own subsection under "Reception and legacy". My rationale is, that MetaMaus is a separate work about Maus, not a part of Maus or a continuation of it, and therefore it does not belong in a section about the publication history of Maus. However, I also acknowledge the different opinion made by Curly Turkey on my Talk page. I will leave that to consensus. The one other point I want to mention here is the table of awards and nominations for Maus. Currently, this table includes one award conferred on MetaMaus. In fact, MetaMaus received at least two awards (a National Jewish Book Award and an Eisner Award). Those awards were for MetaMaus, not for Maus, so either the heading of the table in the article should be changed, and the second award added to the table, or the heading left as it is and the one award deleted from it. I tend to screw things up when I fiddle with tables, so I hope someone else will deal with that. Mathew5000 (talk) 07:19, 14 March 2013 (UTC)

Let me reiterate and clarify my objections, which boil down to WP:UNDUE:
  1. Maus is a very long article; there are any number of places where it could be expanded, even parts that could be spun off into their own articles. I don't see why MetaMaus should be given an entire subsection. I've been asked already to spin off and expand the foreign publication section, and the criticism section could easily be an in-depth article all on its own.
  2. There has been plenty written about MetaMaus; one could easily start an article on it. Most of the information in it wouldn't be worth putting in the main Maus article. Such an article should also include the Voyager CD-ROM from the 1990s, as it's included in MetaMaus, and has had entire book articles written about it.
  3. The fact that so much has been written about MetaMaus attests more to Spiegelman's stardom than to the importance of the book in and of itself; one would expect anything Spiegelman puts out to get extensive reviews, moreso if it's related to Maus.
  4. The award in the table should be removed, as it's for MetaMaus and not Maus. Similarly, the other awards for MetaMaus really don't need to be mentioned.
Please keep in mind that the article already had three sentences on MetaMaus, which I thought gave an appropriate overview without getting overblown.
———Curly Turkey (gobble) 31 March 2013, 07:18 (UTC)
Okay, I will start a separate article on MetaMaus and migrate the information from here to there. Mathew5000 (talk) 18:57, 5 April 2013 (UTC)


Is it supposed to be Chute 2010 or 2011? You give 2010 in FN 48 but 2011 in the bibliography. — Crisco 1492 (talk) 01:48, 19 February 2014 (UTC)

  • Did somebody change this? I only see Chute 2010 and Chute 2006 in the bibliography. Curly Turkey (gobble) 03:35, 19 February 2014 (UTC)
  • You're right. Okay, why isn't FN 48 working...  — Crisco 1492 (talk) 03:37, 19 February 2014 (UTC)
    • Figured it out. I forgot the |ref=harv in the {{cite isbn}} template. Curly Turkey (gobble) 03:59, 19 February 2014 (UTC)

Animal metaphor list[edit]

Here are all the metaphor animals I could find...

Jews - mice, Germans - cats, Poles - pigs, (Christian) Americans - dogs, black Americans - black colored dogs, Swedes - reindeer, French - frogs (instead of bunnies), British - fish, Gypsies - bug or dragonflies. (talk) 03:51, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

  • Aside from this list being simply wrong (the French were frogs with the exception of Françoise; the Gypsies were moths), please keep this list out of the article; it's trivia---the only animals that play a central role in the story ar the mice, cats, and pigs. You also missed the Swedish deer, etc. The list could go on and on and on, and only distract from the meat of the article. Curly Turkey ⚞¡gobble!⚟ 04:07, 19 August 2014 (UTC)


Wikipedia:Today's featured article/requests/Maus --Gerda Arendt (talk) 14:45, 1 August 2015 (UTC)

best terms for groups of people[edit]

"Race" may be problematic, as may be "ethnic group". "Races or ethnic groups" is an ugly mouthful. The sources use both terms, and nobody can seriously pretend that either term is well defined and settled (What am I saying? People pretend so all the time). Earlier we had issues with "ethnic Poles". Can we perhaps find some terminology that is neutral, accurate, and elegant? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 13:40, 11 November 2015 (UTC)

If you are talking about this sentence:
The book uses postmodern techniques—most strikingly in its depiction of __________s as different kinds of animals: Jews as mice, Germans as cats, and non-Jewish Poles as pigs.
... we are not simply talking about groups of people, we are talking about two nationalities and one ethnicity. (By the way, Jewish Germans are Jewish just as Jewish Poles are Jewish, so I'm guessing the sentence should say "non-Jewish Germans" rather than just "Germans".) None of those groups is a specific race, so race cannot be used. The only differentiating term I can think of would be "ethnicities" or "ethnic groups". Since I'm guessing all of those three groups are Caucasian (that would have been the norm at that period in history), and since the article mentions Negroes (black dogs, someone says above on this talk page), we could mention that group as well in that sentence, and say "ethnic groups and races" (but again, only if you mention that additional race of negroes). Softlavender (talk) 14:28, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
If you look up Softlavender, someone else already pointed that out (re German Jews). While it would be valid to point out that under Nazi ideology they were considered different 'races' in the body of the text, the summary should refer to the correct terminology now. Which would be ethnicities or ethnic groups. Once the 'polish jews' were separated out, 'ethnic groups' became the most appropriate of the options, even if in context it is not absolutely correct, but to explain why would take longer than the lead allows. Only in death does duty end (talk) 16:08, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
I don't care for this whole thing much anymore, but what about just "groups". --Sığe |д=) 16:14, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
Sometimes it's better to recast the sentence than merely replace a word, especially when the sentence has been built around the problematic word, but in this case the second part of the sentence draws enough distinctions that a one-word change works:
The book uses postmodern techniques—most strikingly in its depiction of humans as different kinds of animals: Jews as mice, Germans as cats, and non-Jewish Poles as pigs.
Softlavender, it is also problematic to speak of a Caucasian race or of "ethnic groups and races" (our own articles Caucasian race and Historical race concepts illuminate this) so where we do want to use simple substitutions, the default would be "ethnic groups" or - if it doesn't totally disrupt the flow - "ethnic and ethnoreligious groups". NebY (talk) 18:45, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
I like this solution. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:47, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
Wouldn't "ethnicities" be the best term here? Bus stop (talk) 19:18, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
Nothing wrong with race ipse facto, but does not fit this instance. If the examples were of an East Asian, an African, and a European, race would not be so polemical for example.--Sığe |д=) 19:24, 11 November 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I was invited to contribute here by NebY. Can I ask what sources use the term "race"? This book is cited in the article following a sentence that uses race, but the page cited (p. 122) does not contain the word. It would be useful to know which sources use race and which use ethnicity, to get a better understanding as a newcomer to this discussion. Cordless Larry (talk) 20:01, 11 November 2015 (UTC)

CT cited one by Cambridge, you can find it in the page history. However I am neutral towards the term used now. I have presented what I have in the diffs.--Sığe |д=) 21:53, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
If this is the source in question, while it discusses race, it also states "The book is an elaborate allegory which represents Jews as mice, Germans as cats, Poles as pigs, Americans as dogs, and so on", which describes the book without using that term. Cordless Larry (talk) 22:03, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
You should take a look at the sources I inserted which are also in the recent history.--Sıgehelmus (Talk) |д=) 22:08, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
There was quite a bit of edit warring, so could you link to the sources here to make it easier? Cordless Larry (talk) 22:24, 11 November 2015 (UTC) Here is the four sources.--Sıgehelmus (Talk) |д=) 23:49, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. So, we have the following:
  • This book chapter uses "ethnic groups";
  • This webpage uses "nations or ethnic groups", although it's on a university website rather than being a peer-reviewed publication;
  • This paper uses "national or ethnic groups", but it appears to be an unpublished draft;
  • This article uses "ethnic groups".
So there is some evidence to support use of "ethnic groups", and from what I've seen, more than there is for "races". I think this strengthens my view that "ethnic groups" should be preferred over "races" but if we can avoid either, then all the better. Cordless Larry (talk) 08:09, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
Just to be clear, I didn't add "race" to the article, but I stuck with it because
  1. it seemed to fit the context of the work, which uses Nazi allegories of race
  2. "ethnic groups", "ethnicities", etc, seemed just as problematic and subject to endless debate
  3. the sources didn't seem decided on which term to prefer
... so I stuck with the status quo. Are the Jews a race? religion? ethnic group? As the father of three multiethnic, bilingual, dual-national children, I honestly couldn't give a flying fuck. That there are people like Softlavender in the world who have unshakeable convictions on who is what race, creed, ethnicity, or (new to the mix) nationality absolutely sickens me to my stomach. But let's not forget that I'm the POV pusher. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:47, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
I think I prefer a solution that avoids using either, though if forced to pick one over the other, it would be ethnic groups. The wording suggested above is OK, or we could use the "represents Jews as mice, Germans as cats, Poles as pigs, Americans as dogs, and so on" quote. Cordless Larry (talk) 22:55, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
CT, you have been told numerous times not to use such vulgar language, it's uncivil and for someone so cosmopolitan you sure acting ignorant of others' cultural and societal backgrounds such as mine (where liberal use of "fuck" is seen as threatening). I'm sure there are many other Wikipedians who agree. You are a father, I can only pray you have your priorities straight and teach your children not to talk so uncivilly in this kind of setting before any kind of contested debate on the classification of the races.--Sıgehelmus (Talk) |д=) 23:46, 11 November 2015 (UTC) EDIT: I want to clarify I have nothing against you, but mentioning your personal life such as your three "multiethnic, bilingual, dual-national children" (who I am sure are loved deeply and taught only the purest traditions) is irrelevant to this discussion, and your liberal cursing is uncalled for.
You can tell me which words not to use, and I can keep ignoring it. I find bottomless offense in being talked down the nose to on race and ethnicity with the implication that my supposed choice of terminology in the article is driven by some racist agenda—and then being lectured on WP:CIVIL(!). Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 08:44, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
Well put it this way, either keep a civil tongue or people will just not engage with you and any consensus that is formed will likely not include your participation. As it is, describing fellow editors as making you sick to your stomach (due to opinions you think they have rather than ones they might actually have) is commenting on the editor not the edits. Stop it. Only in death does duty end (talk) 10:30, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
Funny, ain't it, how none of you want to discuss NebY's proposed, very workable solution (WP:NOTHERE?). Per WP:CONSENSUS, which is policy, decisions are reached through quality of arguments and not number of hands raised. "We don't like the way this guy talks" is not a quality argument, so I suggest you stop it. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 11:28, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
I am willing to discuss NebY's suggestion, and indeed have make reference to it above. Let's keep this discussion focused on the article content. Cordless Larry (talk) 11:42, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
Except that NebY's option would effectively remove any explicit mention from the lead that the different ethnic groups are grouped by animal - leaving it implicit and hoping the reader picks up that the intent was to label by ethnic group instead of by nationality. Its compromise by obscuring the intent of the author. Which is a far less optimum way of saying it when you could just say 'ethnic group' and have the most accurate statement by today's terminology. Only in death does duty end (talk) 12:32, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
What about the quote from this source, that ""The book is an elaborate allegory which represents Jews as mice, Germans as cats, Poles as pigs, Americans as dogs, and so on". To me, that explains the allegory perfectly well without needing to provide a description of the nature of the groups. Cordless Larry (talk) 14:36, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
That wouldnt bother me as such. Except someone might raise the (non Jews) Polish issue again - which I personally dont think was an issue in the first place, but from the discussion's above, some clearly did. Only in death does duty end (talk) 14:46, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
They're sensitive, politicized issues, and someone's going to take offense to any term we're going to use. I knew a woman who took offense at use of the word "ethnic" because it "sounded racist". Keep in mind that the animal metaphor is meant to be problematic. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:42, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
You don't see the problem here? Softlavender insists the Germans and Poles are "nationalities" and not "ethnicities", and now you're saying they're opposite. Here's a better idea: give up on the hopeless idea that any of these terms are neutral. As for "intent of the author": Spiegelman's intent was to pull the rug out on Nazi concepts of race. The book's epigraph uses a Hitler quote about the Jews as a race. One could argue that avoiding "race" is "obscuring the intent of the author". Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 13:12, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
And here I thought you didnt care what word is used? At no point did I say 'opposite'. What I said in plain English was that by removing any qualifier (race or ethnic grouping) and merely listing the nationalities, it leaves the suggestion the animals are grouped by nationality instead of by ethnic grouping (which may encompass/include parts of a nationality as Softlavender has pointed out) Articles are written using current terminology and while 'race' would have been an appropriate descriptor in 1945 per Nazi Ideology, it is not today. The discussion/explanation on the differences belongs elsewhere in the body of the text if you feel its necessary to shoehorn it in, but not in a simple sentence in the lead where 'ethnic grouping' would be more accurate. 'Ethnic grouping' is a perfectly neutral term while 'race' is clearly and obviously incorrect given its use regarding Jews. Only in death does duty end (talk) 13:36, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
And here I thought you didnt care what word is used?: I don't. You can't seriously have failed to understand my point this completely. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 14:06, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
What about terminology such as "groupings of people"? "The book uses postmodern techniques—most strikingly in its depiction of groupings of people as different kinds of animals: Jews as mice, Germans as cats, and non-Jewish Poles as pigs." Or even just "groups of people". Bus stop (talk) 21:25, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
Softlavender has already objected that we're "not simply talking about groups of people". Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 09:56, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
"Groups of people" has worked well as a neutral heading on this page precisely because it's not a phrase we'd normally use to describe Jews, non-Jewish Poles and so forth, in this article or elsewhere. In the article, "groups of people" and "groupings of people" would be liable to surprise the reader and disrupt the flow. NebY (talk) 11:56, 13 November 2015 (UTC)

(edit conflict) At present, the article has in the lead

The book uses postmodern techniques—most strikingly in its depiction of ethnic groups as different kinds of animals: Jews as mice, Germans as cats, and non-Jewish Poles as pigs.

in the Presentation subsection of "Themes"

The book portrays different races as different species of animals—the Jews as mice, Germans as cats, and ethnic Poles as pigs, among others.

and in the final Academic work and criticism section

Literary critic Walter Ben Michaels found Spiegelman's racial divisions "counterfactual".[175] Spiegelman depicts the various European races as different animal species, but Americans, both black and white, as dogs—with the exception of the Jews, who remain unassimilated mice. To Michaels, Maus seems to gloss over the racial inequality that has plagued the history of the U.S.

The source for the first two seems to be "The book is an elaborate allegory which represents Jews as mice, Germans as cats, Poles as pigs, Americans as dogs, and so on", so the paraphrasing is rather close. Does anyone have access to the source for the third? I've suggested "depiction of humans as different kinds of animals" for the first, and perhaps "portrays people as different species of animals" would work for the second, but this leaves the close paraphrasing and the different qualifications of Poles as "non-Jewish" and "ethnic", which are awkward and beg questions - is a Polish Jew not ethnically Polish? Tentatively, here are three alternatives using slightly different approaches.

1. The book uses postmodern techniques—most strikingly by representing Jews as mice, other Germans and Poles as cats and pigs, other Americans as dogs, and so on.
2. The book portrays humans with the heads and tails of different species of animals; Jews are drawn as mice, other Germans and Poles as cats and pigs, other Americans as dogs, and so forth.
3. ... Spiegelman depicts Europeans as different animal species but all Americans, both black and white, as the same species - dogs - with the exception of the Jews, who remain unassimilated mice. ...

Are any of thes adequate, could they be made so, or should we go a little further in changing the phrasing? NebY (talk) 22:13, 12 November 2015 (UTC)

The cited source for the second is the Fathers one, NebY, which is not where the "The book is an elaborate allegory which represents Jews as mice, Germans as cats, Poles as pigs, Americans as dogs, and so on" quote comes from (it's from Loman). Of course, it may be that that quote has been paraphrased and then attributed to a different source. Cordless Larry (talk) 22:23, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
Which quote are you talking about? The only wrote he presented was the word "counterfactual". Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 00:17, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
The quote is in quote marks in my last comment. NebY seems to be suggesting that some wording in the article is based on it (saying "The source for the first two seems to be..."), but I'm pointing out that the source it comes from is not cited. Cordless Larry (talk) 07:52, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
Actually, Loman is cited later on in the sentence that starts "The book portrays different races as different species...", but the place that the citation appears doesn't suggest that it is supposed to support that part of the sentence. Sloppy referencing, perhaps. Cordless Larry (talk) 07:58, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
The quote is Loman quoting Michaels: "Maus [...] famously [depicts] its Jews as mice, its Germans as cats, its Poles as pigs, and so on, with Americans as dogs." (p. 223). The quote is not quoted in the article. What are you accusing of "sloppiness"? I see nothing in those two sentences that is not in the two cited pages of the source. Please be explicit. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 09:05, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
Wait, are you under the impression that every sentence must have its own inline citation? No, that's not how it works. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 09:11, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
Loman doesn't quote Michaels in the article I'm looking at. He states "The book is an elaborate allegory which represents Jews as mice, Germans as cats, Poles as pigs, Americans as dogs, and so on" (p. 552). What I'm saying is that if this has been used as the basis of the line in the Wikipedia article that "The book portrays different races as different species of animals—the Jews as mice, Germans as cats, and ethnic Poles as pigs, among others", as NebY suggests above, then the referencing is sloppy because the latter is not clearly sourced to Loman but rather to Fathers. It may well be that NebY is wrong and the Loman article is not the source, however. Cordless Larry (talk) 09:15, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
You appear to be discussing the "Literary critic Walter Ben Michaels found Spiegelman's..." line, Curly Turkey, whereas I'm discussing "The book portrays different races...". We're talking past one another. Cordless Larry (talk) 09:19, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict)My apologies - I wasn't clear enough and seem to have triggered a line of enquiry that I really didn't intend. I was just concerned that we seem to have re-used a useful phrasing - whether from Michaels or Loman - and may be at risk of close paraphrasing, so I've tried using other phrasing in my suggestions. NebY (talk) 09:26, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
No worries. I wish I hadn't started down this line of enquiry! Anyway, I think your three suggested sentences are good, although I also think that directly quoting Loman wouldn't be a bad idea either. Cordless Larry (talk) 09:29, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) No, Larry, you're reading the wrong Loman. The article you're looking at ("Allegories of Race in Spiegelman's Maus", 2006) is not used as a source in the article—it's "The Canonization of Spiegelman's Maus" in The Rise of the American Comics Artist: Creators and Contexts (2010). Both articles are by Loman. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 09:30, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
OK, but above NebY wrote "The source for the first two seems to be 'The book is an elaborate allegory which represents Jews as mice, Germans as cats, Poles as pigs, Americans as dogs, and so on', so the paraphrasing is rather close". That quote is from Loman's 2006 article. I'm just pointing out that NebY appeared to be wrong about that. Cordless Larry (talk) 09:35, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
"Spiegelman depicts Europeans as different animal species but all Americans, both black and white, as the same species - dogs - with the exception of the Jews, who remain unassimilated mice. ..."
The problem with this is that Europeans aren't represented as random "different animal species", but systematically based on Nazi conceptions of race. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 09:47, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
Good point, and I was quietly fretting about that too. One way would be to incorporate the phrase you've just provided, thus: "Spiegelman depicts Europeans as different animal species based on Nazi conceptions of race, but all Americans ..." I rather like that, but is it too long-winded, and does it still represent Michaels fairly? We don't want to expand his critique beyond what he actually wrote.
Another way is ""Spiegelman depicts European "races" as different animal species but all Americans ..." which distances us from the division of Europeans into races. NebY (talk) 11:34, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
There's a lot of resistence to "square quotes" in these parts (I imagine in part because the intention behind them can be ambiguous), but I think otherwise you're on the right track. The Loman article doesn't put it that way explicitly, but here's one source that does (and I could have sworn I came across and interview or three where Spiegelman says so much). Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 12:52, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
Do you mean scare quotes? Bus stop (talk) 14:22, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
Uf corse, Im normaly a gud speler. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:38, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. We seem to have something like consensus, or at least general silence. I'm inclined to go ahead and change the first two as suggested and for the third, begin by using the version with race in distancing quotes. I'm wary of scare quotes too - I've seen too many tabloid stories - but I think the intention's pretty clear here, and we have the "based on Nazi conceptions" version to fall back on if there are objections to the quotes. Does that seem reasonable? NebY (talk) 19:04, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Why put it in quotes? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:40, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
To indicate that this is the Nazi conception of race, not that of the Wikipedia editorial voice. But if you're asking, the intention isn't clear after all, so now I suggest the one that incorporates your phrase instead: "Spiegelman depicts Europeans as different animal species based on Nazi conceptions of race, but all Americans ..." NebY (talk) 21:50, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I'm okay with that (without the quotes), but I'd drop the bit about Americans—non-mouse Americans are rarely depicted in the book, and it just opens things up to people appending fish, deer, frogs, moths, etc. The American dogs are discussed in the text, and mention of them should be limited to there. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:14, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Good point about not encouraging eager over-extending of lists. Right, I guess it's time to actually edit the article; best way to be sure we are all looking at the same texts. NebY (talk) 22:45, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
The unfortunate thing is that "other Germans and Poles as cats and pigs" doesn't make it clear that the Germans are cats and Poles pigs. "Respectively" is so ugly ... Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:16, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Oh, I do want to avoid "respectively"! How about "other Germans as cats and other Poles as pigs"? It's repetitive but it doesn't seem to flow too badly. NebY (talk) 00:14, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
I prefer the "based on Nazi conceptions" wording to just using "race" in quote marks. These groups aren't understood as races in contemporary usage of the term. Cordless Larry (talk) 21:54, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
No, it's already been pointed out that using quotes in such a way is ambiguous, and the term is already qualified with "Nazi conceptions of". Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:14, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I'm arguing in favour of the wording "Nazi conceptions of" and against the scare quotes. Cordless Larry (talk) 22:29, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Sorry, I misread your quoting of "race" as support for quoting "race". Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:35, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
What is wrong with "different groups of people"?
The book uses postmodern techniques—most strikingly in its depiction of different groups of people as different kinds of animals: Jews as mice, Germans as cats, and non-Jewish Poles as pigs.
Bus stop (talk) 04:21, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
Because every terms has its haters. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 05:32, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
What source supports "based on Nazi conceptions of race" specifically? I can't quote it up at this very moment, but if I recall the NSDAP did not separate Slavs and Nordics as specifically different races.--Sıgehelmus (Talk) |д=) 16:09, 15 November 2015 (UTC)

Same sentence -- different question[edit]

The book uses postmodern techniques—most strikingly by representing Jews as mice and other Germans and Poles as cats and pigs.

My question is, how or why is this a postmodern technique? Would need to have a citation for that. And how or why is it "striking"? People have been doing that for centuries. Both of these statements need serious citations. Would probably be easier to just cut out the editorialization and say "The book represents Jews as mice and other Germans and Poles as cats and pigs." Softlavender (talk) 10:15, 18 November 2015 (UTC)

  • "Postmodern" is cited in the body (the lead summarizes the body and therefore requires no citations that are already in the body), and it's not hard to find sources for "Maus postmodern". The animals are not simple traditional anthropomorphism, which is where the postmodernism comes into it: the whole "meta" self-consciousness, etc. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 10:46, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I'm not questioning that the book has some elements of postmodernism, but I am questioning that the use of different animals to portray different groups of people is postmodern, let alone "strikingly" so. Calling that "postmodern", let alone "strikingly postmodern", needs a citation. The only thing mentioned as postmodern in the body text is the book feeding on itself by telling the story of how it was made, which is a postmodern technique. Using different animals to portray different groups of people had been done long before postmodernism (I'm not talking about simple traditional anthropomorphism). Softlavender (talk) 11:31, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Perhaps one could say, in the body of the article, that Maus displays the postmodern quality of being "self-referential". I don't know what the source says. Does anybody have the actual wording in the source? If the source does not speak of the representation of groups of people as strains of animals, then we would be incorrect in the present assertion in the lede. Bus stop (talk) 11:59, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
@Bus stop: That (self-referential) is already cited. What is in question is the question I posed in my OP. Mention in a source that of groups of people are represented as different animals does not equate to that being postmodern, much less strikingly so. Softlavender (talk) 12:11, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I agree, except if the source says otherwise, in which case I would probably defer to the source. Can anyone provide a a relevant excerpt from the source? Bus stop (talk) 12:25, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
What "source" are you talking about? All sources that describe the book obviously note that different groups of people are represented as different animals, because that's the major device of the book. Softlavender (talk) 12:41, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
The paragraph within the body of the article with the quote "feeds on itself" contains two citations. I don't have ready access to either of those publications. The two publications are the 1997 Monica Wood book and the 2006 James E. Young book. I would be interested in reading the actual wording found in one or both of those publications relating to the "postmodern" dimension to Maus. Bus stop (talk) 16:52, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Sorry. I found it here: "Like any good postmodern memory-art, Maus thereby feeds on itself, recalling its own production, even the choices the artist makes along the way." Bus stop (talk) 16:59, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for finding that. However it's not listed as the source (nor listed anywhere in the citations); in fact the sentence does not have a citation at all. It does indeed appear that that is the source the info was taken from (unless Young repeated himself almost verbatim in the 2006 article). The other three citations in that paragraph are appended to other sentences, and the 2006 Young article cited is not viewable online without a subscription. Anyway, if the 1998 Young article that you posted above is the only source for the postmodernism claim, it only refers to the novel referring to how it was created; that's the only postmodern element. I've checked the two other viewable citations for the other sentences in that paragraph, and they don't contain the word postmodern (or postmodernism/postmodernist), so they aren't referring to the postmodern aspect. At this point it's looking like the mention of postmodernism should be removed from the lede, or if kept it should be another sentence entirely and refer to the actual cited postmodern element instead. Softlavender (talk) 20:48, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Yes, it seems the only postmodern element is the book's discussing its own creation. Groups of people represented as different types of animals does not seem to be supported by sources as being a postmodern element. I think we can just omit mention of animals from the lede. Bus stop (talk) 23:26, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I don't think we can omit the use of the different animal groups in the lede, because that is a major part of the article and book. We can however omit postmodernism in the lede, because that is just one small bit and one sentence in this article. Softlavender (talk) 01:23, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
I'd hardly call its self-referentiality its "only postmodern element"—for instance, here's an article titled "Reading Art Spiegelman's Maus as Postmodern Ethnography", and many sources talk of distancing, etc. Maus is the single most analyzed graphic novel ever written—it's not hard to find sources, which would be a better use of time than discussing your own interpretations of the work or postmodernism. The animal metaphor is meant to (and frequently does) rupture, which is hardly a traditional use of anthropomorphism. The animals are not meant to be animals at all, and in several scenes the animal masks become literal masks. This ain't Mickey Mouse or Animal Farm. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:31, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
Whatever we say should be supported by a source (obviously) and should be clear to the reader. We still don't have a source supportive of the use of animals as a postmodern element. The above source might support an assertion such as: "Some view Maus as a form of ethnography.'The texts are concerned with depicting the complex relationships among personal histories and larger "official" histories.'" Bus stop (talk) 04:33, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
So what you're saying is we have to have a source for each manifestation of postmodernism in the book to support the statement "The book uses postmodern techniques"? There is no lack of sources. A couple minutes turns up:
* this describing Maus as "postmodern memory-art"
* "postmodern attempt to address the position of second-generation survivors and the difficulties inherent in translating experiences ... into words"
* "comics ... are not intrinsically postmodern, but Spiegelman's use of the form is"
* "Framing the Past: Postmodernism and the Making of Reflective Memory in Art Spiegelman's Maus
* "obviously a work in the postmodern mode"
* [a phenomenon of late twentieth-century postmodernism "Maus could be categorized as 'historiographical metafiction' ... a phenomenon of late twentieth-century postmodernism"]
How many sources is this single word going to be required to be laden with? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 06:18, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
The point is, the sentence in question in the OP is not backed up by citations. And if the wiki article states that the book uses postmodern techniques, it has to state specifically which techniques, backed up by specific passages in specific citations. Softlavender (talk) 08:17, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
So a source that states it's a postmodern work is not enough? Okay, any other hoops to jump through? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 08:48, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
A reliable source stating that its a postmodern work is a citation that it's a postmodern work, not for anything more specific than that. Softlavender (talk) 08:55, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
I think it is not always clear what is meant by "postmodern". If the article is to be useful to the reader we should be able to say something more than simply that it is "postmodern" or that it "uses postmodern techniques". How is it postmodern? In what way is it postmodern? To get back to the original question—what source supports that "the book uses postmodern techniques—most strikingly by representing Jews as mice and other Germans and Poles as cats and pigs"? That is a full assertion. It is not enough to merely have a source supporting the first half of the sentence. The implication is that the representation of "Jews as mice" and "other Germans and Poles as cats and pigs" is "strikingly" a "postmodern technique". Is everything about this book postmodern? Perhaps it has some postmodern qualities. If so, we should specify and explain how or in what way these aspects of this book are postmodern. Bus stop (talk) 11:20, 19 November 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── @Bus stop: In the body text, the wiki article states one technique of the book which is postmodern. It does not elaborate on any other techniques. That is the only postmodern technique mentioned and cited in this wiki article. Since the current consensus is that there is no current substantiation that the use of specific animals for specific groups of people is a postmodern technique, even vis-a-vis this book, I'm going to remove that part of the sentence for now. Softlavender (talk) 08:36, 20 November 2015 (UTC)

So your solution is to remove "postmodern" entirely from the lead, despite the number of articles that call it a postmodern work? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:10, 20 November 2015 (UTC)
You're welcome to state that it is a postmodern work in the body text, with citations that substantiate, and then echo it in the lede, in a separate sentence. Or state in the body text that it uses postmodern techniques (plural), if you can specifically list and substantiate with a citation(s) other techniques beyond self-referencing, and then echo that in the lede in a separate sentence. Or alternatively, put the citations for it being a postmodern work in the lede (in a lede sentence that states it is a postmodern work); but whatever choice is made, the word "postmodern" and the mention of the animal symbolism shouldn't be in the same sentence because no citation has been presented that substantiates that as a specifically postmodern technique in this book. Softlavender (talk) 22:31, 20 November 2015 (UTC)
Haw haw, but your condescension only makes your disruptiveness the worse. When you are totally aware (as you are) that there is a plethora of sources describing the book as postmodern, then removing that tidbit rather than adding the sources and improving the article is tendentiously making a WP:POINT---totally unacceptable behaviour. If you're not here to improve the article, then take your keyboard skills elsewhere. Perhaps 4chan. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:55, 20 November 2015 (UTC)
Hi Curly Turkey—in what ways is the book postmodern? I'm not saying it is not postmodern. I'm trying to initiate what will hopefully be a productive conversation. In what ways is "Maus" postmodern? If we can't articulate ways in which the book is postmodern, we can still tell the reader—even in the lede—that the literary critics consider the book postmodern. But I think it would be better if we explained the ways in which some see the book as being postmodern. Can you enumerate the ways in which the book is postmodern? Bus stop (talk) 01:43, 21 November 2015 (UTC)
How about you take a look through the sources and find a wording that conforms to the sources, is concise and readable, and that you find acceptable. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:57, 21 November 2015 (UTC)
The potentially problematic sentence has been alleviated. No source specifically supported the assertion that the representation of "Jews as mice and other Germans and Poles as cats and pigs" was a postmodern aspect of this book. I have seen no source supporting that and you have presented no source supportive of that assertion. It would have been irresponsible (original research) of us to assert that "The book uses postmodern techniques—most strikingly by representing Jews as mice and other Germans and Poles as cats and pigs." This is content that should be supported by a source. We should not be telling the reader something that the sources are not telling us. If you are going to argue that many sources refer to the book as being postmodern, I would counter-argue that no source that I have seen specifies the representation of groups of people as animal-types as a postmodern aspect of the book. Note that "Sources should directly support the information as it is presented in the Wikipedia article." Bus stop (talk) 04:47, 21 November 2015 (UTC)
Let's try this again: the word "postmodern" was "relieved" from the lead by an editor with a particular POV with the word and who was aware of the number of RSes that talk about the work as postmodern or postmodern aspects of the work. Address that. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 12:27, 21 November 2015 (UTC)
And, of course, if a minimal effort is made, sources can be found for the postmodernity of the animal metaphor. Here's one asserting the animal masks are one of two aspects that make Maus "inevitably" postmodern. Are either of you willing to put in even this minimal effort? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 12:55, 21 November 2015 (UTC)
That source is a conference paper. Here's the published version. I'm not sure how reputable that journal is, so there may be more reliable sources. Cordless Larry (talk) 12:58, 21 November 2015 (UTC)
The point is that sources are abundant, yet these two don't appear to be willing to look at any of them (even when linked to). Take a look at Bus Stop's question: "in what ways is the book postmodern?" The answer is to google it, FFS. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 13:39, 21 November 2015 (UTC)
I've been looking for sources but am going round in circles a bit (probably due to my lack of familiarity with literary studies). This source (and the paragraph ending "That, in 2015, the debate is still ongoing attests to the critical importance and aesthetic, historical and political complexities raised by Maus" in particular) suggests that characterising Maus as postmodern is still subject to some debate. This is quite an accessible read, incidentally. Cordless Larry (talk) 09:23, 22 November 2015 (UTC)
"What is postmodern" is one of those perennial debates that more or less defines postmodernism. There are those who will assert, for instance, that Gravity's Rainbow is the ultimate example of a postmodern novel, while others will deny it's postmodern at all. The fact is that "postmodern" creeps up with great frequency in writings on Maus and many sources define it as "postmodern". We don't get to ignore that just because it doesn't fit our personal defintion of "postmodern". Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 09:28, 22 November 2015 (UTC)
I'm not saying anything about our definition. It's just that the article states that Maus is postmodern as a fact, when there seems to be at least some debate about how best to characterise it. Cordless Larry (talk) 10:04, 22 November 2015 (UTC)
No, the article doesn't define the book as postmodern, it says that Spiegelman "takes a postmodern approach" and used to say "The book uses postmodern techniques" until Softlavender unilaterally removed that. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 10:15, 22 November 2015 (UTC)
OK, it states that the book takes a postmodern approach as fact, rather than saying that that is an interpretation of it. Anyway, this talk page is too WP:BATTLEGROUND for me, and I don't like the tone of the replies I'm getting when I'm just trying to give the perspective of someone not previously involved in the disagreement, so I'm taking it off my watchlist. Cordless Larry (talk) 11:07, 22 November 2015 (UTC)


An editor has asked on the Help Desk if an IPA pronunciation could be added to the article. Is there someone here who knows the correct pronunciation and IPA well enough to add that? Dismas|(talk) 21:05, 6 December 2015 (UTC)

The pronunciation of "mouse" is /mʌʊs/ or /mɛʉs/ in Canadian English, with the Canadian raising. I pronounce the title of the book as it's described here, which is a different way from the way I pronounce "mouse." Roches (talk) 01:37, 27 January 2016 (UTC)

Why would you do that? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:01, 27 January 2016 (UTC)


I appreciate the fact that Maus article has been featured on the front page of Wikipedia (August 22, 2015) "as one of the best articles produced by the Wikipedia community" (end of quote) with over 20,000 views on that day,[11] but I am (and have been) troubled by the way it is written and I am thinking of nominating if for WP:FAR. Before nomination though, per our policy guideline, I would like to raise issues at talk page of the article (end of quote). I have made only one edit to this article in its entire editing history by quoting a reliable history book from Google explaining the concentration camp labour. I was reverted with a single click. This, nevertheless, has sparked a flurry of activity on my talk page at User talk:Poeticbent#Maus revert. Our discussion went nowhere, and I think I understand why. I also understand why the article is a target of enraged IP user attacks, such as the one from yesterday.

The WP:REDFLAG boils down to 'the pig insult' of course.[12] However, the way it is being handled by the article authors is but a small sample of serious problems with neutrality going far beyond racism. The whole article (including its so-called criticism) is a straight forward tribute to the subject, in conflict with Wikipedia's mission. Maus, the graphic novel, is devoted to a single real-life episode from the vast mass of material about the Holocaust in occupied Poland. It has been fictionalized similar to any historical period drama, and that's where similarities end. Huge parts of this article are devoted to Maus 'synopsis' and 'background'. The background of Maus of course ... not the historical background of the Sosnowiec Ghetto where the events take place. The article say little to nothing about the real Nazi German language of propaganda, where 'the pig insult' originated. – The Nazis did not refer to the Jewish people as mice in Der Ewige Jude; they used to say "Sie vermehren sich wie die Ratten" in their hateful plots; a chaotic mess of rats. The author of the novel can say whatever he wants ... he can call Polish people pigs, however, here in Wikipedia we cannot do that. Maus was produced during Cold War, decades ahead of the collapse of the Soviet empire followed by all the revelations about the communist crimes. There's nothing about the Cold War stereotypes in this article, disseminated in some American communities attempting to come to grips with their past and their public image. The article is written in a historical vacuum. Poeticbent talk 16:05, 14 April 2016 (UTC)

The author ... can call Polish people pigs, however, here in Wikipedia we cannot do that—and of course never do. Further commenters need to keep this bizarre comment in mind when addressing what Poeticbent has written above.
Here's Poeticbent's edit that I reverted, which includes an extremely devious rewording of "little stereotyping" to "much stereotyping" with no source to support it, as well as an extremely poor kludge of an attempt to WP:RIGHTGREATWRONGS. Here is my explanation for the revert at Poeticbent's talk page, with an offer to find a way to deal with the issue in a Wikipedia-appropriate manner. The "discussion" quickly devolved into threats and accusations, and no attempt on Poeticbent's part to find any kind of workable solution whatsoever.
Here's an interesting article by Tomasz Łysak that could be used to beef up the Polish angle—but of course should not be allowed to eat up the article. There's already a paragraph in the article dealing with these issues—including accusations of Spiegelman employing an "ethnic slur"—of which Poeticbent seems blissfully unaware (I'll AGF and call it an oversight). Poeticbent needs to keep in mind issues of WP:OR, WP:SYNTHESIS, WP:WEIGHT, etc, which the editor seems almost committed to violating. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:26, 14 April 2016 (UTC)

I would love to see editors other than Curly Turkey, involved in bringing this entry up to an FA level, contribute to this thread also. However, in the last 10 days nobody else said anything at all. – There is only a continuation of the same belittling of virtually everything I said, repeated by Curly Turkey on my talk page, and coupled with the laundry list of internal links in capital letters, with no relevance to the subject of my inquiry. I have already alerted Curly Turkey to the fact that there's absolutely nothing in LaCapra about the quote-unquote "little stereotyping among the Poles" [13] As a result Curly Turkey himself removed that line from the article, nevertheless, he chose to continue with the insults (quote): "bizarre comment" ... "an extremely devious rewording" ... "an extremely poor kludge" ... and so on. Please compare this with the user's own statement on my talk page (quote): I may have misinterpreted the source ... etc. Everything being taken into account, the complete absence of historical background to the Holocaust with special consideration given to the Sosnowiec Ghetto in occupied Poland with its courageous uprising, makes this article unbalanced and un-encyclopaedic. It is a tribute to Maus comic strip, with all voices of reason, pointing out to its graphic representation 'inspired by Goebbels', immediately dubbed by carefully selected commentators as radical right-wing. Clearly, the problems cannot be resolved here. Therefore, the next step in the WP:FAR process is only the remaining option, because the article is not neutral at all, with the sections on the Maus political impact abroad and surrounding controversy decidedly substandard. Poeticbent talk 19:23, 24 April 2016 (UTC)

  • I dont see any serious problems expressed here just some OR and "I dont like that". A serious concern would have to show that the article misrepresents what reliable sources about the specific topic of the article write. That would require presenting some sources in support of specific concerns, not vague discomfort with the Spiegelmans artistic choices.·maunus · snunɐɯ· 00:17, 2 May 2016 (UTC)

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