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“Maus” has risen to the top of Amazon’s bestseller list following a recent Tennessee book ban of the graphic novel. 

Feb 03 2022

Maus has risen to the top of Amazon’s bestseller list following a recent Tennessee book ban of the graphic novel. Written by Art Spiegelman, Maus is a Pulitzer-prize winning nonfiction graphic novel telling the story of Spiegelman’s Jewish parents’ life in 1940s Poland, and depicts all humans as animals, with Jews drawn as mice and Nazis as cats. Last month, the McMinn County School Board in Tennessee unanimously voted to ban Maus from its eighth grade English language arts curriculum because of its language and depiction of a nude woman–though that illustration is actually of a mouse without clothes on. One board member stated, “We don’t need this stuff to teach kids history…we don’t need all the nakedness and all the other stuff.” The ban came just before Holocaust Remembrance Day, and Spiegelman, along with students, school educators, experts, and parents, have spoken out in protest. In the wake of the ban, the book and its counterparts have risen to the top of Amazon’s bestsellers list as Millennial parents race to support the title. President of the TN State Conference NAACP, Gloria Sweet-Love explains, “Banning the book Maus about the Holocaust is another way to censor the history of a group of people.” This isn’t the first book banning issue schools have faced. Titles including The Hate U Give, George, and The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, have been banned before, with schools citing anti-police messaging, LGBTQIA+ content, and sexual references, respectively, as their reasoning. More recently, students in Pennsylvania have organized groups to reverse a book ban targeting the work of Black authors at their school. Millennial parents tell YPulse they want diverse entertainment across the board to help teach their kids about their own race / ethnicity, as well as cultures / communities they’re not a part of, and school-enforced book bans only censor kids from learning about history in a real, truthful way. (The HillNBC News)