New story by PhD candidate Taylor Green, “Reflections on Maus through a Pandemic,” published in the Canadian Society for the Study of Comics annual newsletter Grawlix. Taylor bridges the connection between the graphic novel and political philosophy.

Thinking about comics in a scholarly way is especially not easy when we face a global pandemic. The graphic novel medium is a form of art that mimics our reality. One possibility elicited from this art form is an escape from our daily lives. A graphic narrative that puts the reader into a period of history is Art Spiegelman’s Maus, an epic tale written by the son of a Holocaust survivor. The tale is remarkable in its truths about the horrors of the twentieth century. Recently, a school board in Tennessee voted in favour of removing Maus from its grade 8 curriculum, citing language and nudity as justifications for their reasoning.

To understand this curriculum removal of Maus, I turn to the classic political philosophy treatise, Plato’s Republic, which questions the role of artistic and poetical construction in a proper civic education.

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