Laughing matters : the Holocaust humour of Art Spiegelman, Tadeusz Borowski, and Aleksander Kulisiewicz / by Jude Polsky.
Using the term “humour” broadly—to include jokes, the comic, parody, satire, irony, and understatement—this thesis examines the Holocaust texts of three writers. After debating various taboos and issues of representation, I discuss Maus I and Maus II, the comic books of Art Spiegelman that created a new genre and new ways to represent the altered reality of the concentration camps. In Chapter Three I analyse a book of short stories by Tadeusz Borowski, This Way for the Gas, Ladies and Gentlemen, and argue that the author's dark humour places readers into what Primo Levi calls the “gray zone,” a place of collusion between perpetrator and victim. Chapter Four deals with excerpts of oral testimony in which survivors speak about their experiences with humour in the camps; I then analyse the songs of Aleksander Kulisiewicz, a much neglected Polish songwriter who caricatures and parodies the Nazi system of extermination.
Record last modified: 2018-05-24 14:02:00
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