Creator Of “Maus” And Holocaust Historian Team Up On Wash. Post Cartoon About 1939 Refugee Ship

News Release
June 21, 2009

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The creator of the Pulitzer Prize winning graphic novel about the Holocaust, “Maus,” has teamed up with a Holocaust historian to create a full-page cartoon in the Washington Post about the voyage of the 1939 Jewish refugee ship, the St. Louis.

The cartoon feature, by Maus creator Art Spiegelman and Dr. Rafael Medoff, director of The David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies, appears in today’s Washington Post (June 21, 2009) and may be viewed at:

Today marks the seventieth anniversary of the end of the voyage of the St. Louis, which was forced to take its more than 900 German Jewish refugee passengers back to Europe after being refused entry to Cuba and the United States in June 1939.

The Spiegelman-Medoff collaboration is the latest in a series of projects by the Wyman Institute to teach Holocaust history through the medium of graphic art. Other recent projects include:

— “The Last Outrage,” a comic strip by Medoff and legendary comic book artist Neal Adams, with a foreword by longtime Marvel Comics publisher Stan Lee, which was published in the Marvel comic book X-Men: Testament – Magneto in February 2009. “The Last Outrage” tells the story of Dina Babbitt, an artist who was forced by the Nazis to paint a series of portraits in Auschwitz, but has been unable to get her paintings back from the Polish museum which is holding them. An animated version of “The Last Outrage” has been included by Disney’s educational division its new DVDs based on “Anne Frank,” “The Boy in the Striped Pajamas,” and “A Beautiful Life.”

— “They Refused to Go,” a comic strip by Medoff and comic book artist Sal Amendola, concerning American athletes who boycotted the 1936 Olympics in Nazi Germany. It was published in The New Republic on August 13, 2008.

— “Cartoonists Against the Holocaust,” an acclaimed traveling exhibit, designed by the Wyman Institute with comic creators Joe Kubert and Adam Kubert, featuring political cartoons from the 1930s and 1940s that tried to raise American public awareness of the Nazi genocide.