Dehumanization

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Dehumanization has been a central topic in discussions within various fields the modern society, from human rights and politics to university studies and daily news around us, but it has been specially discussed by writers and artists as one of the main causes of some of the most important and controversial stages of universal history. These stages include the fight against racism, slavery, sexism, cultural discrimination, etc. But for the purpose of this essay I will be focusing on one specific stage, or I should say historic event, involving dehumanization, that is still causing social indignation and is still being used as a central subject by many modern artists. It is the Holocaust. The Holocaust, also known as “The Shoah”, was the genocide of millions of people during the Second World War including Jews, homosexuals, people with disabilities, etc. which was state-sponsored by Nazi Germany, but the principal “target” of this massacre was the European Jewish population. As mentioned before, many artists and writers have been using the holocaust as a subject for their work, from short essays to published books and novels. Among all of the written works that have been published, there is one that received international recognition and critic, and is now considered by many people as one of the most important comic books created and an essential piece that describes the holocaust. It is Maus by Art Spiegelman. Maus is a graphic novel divided in two books, that tells the story of the author’s father, Vladek Spiegelman, as a survivor of the holocaust. At first glance, the main storyline of the book seems to be the experience of Vladek as a prisoner in Auschwitz and how he managed to get out of there alive, but as you read the book you begin to realize that it is more about Art’s relationship with his father and his family and Vladek’s personality after the war compared to other survivors’. In the book we are presented to many visits of Art to his father with the...
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