When authors and historians get heavily involved in political debate, it’s often a sign the world is in trouble! We’ve talked about liberal authors and fascism before but today we are featuring Dr Seuss and his little known work as a political cartoonist during World War II.
Seuss created the cartoons for liberal New York Magazine PM and in them denounced Hitler and Mussolini and was highly critical of those who opposed US intervention during the war. He didn’t hold back in these views, deploring the racism against blacks and Jews at home and launching frequent attacks on Congress.
The collection is unmistakably Seuss, even though it’s a world away from his usual subject matter, and the collection offers a fascinating historical insight. It also offers an insight into the man Seuss was, as he poured his opinions and thoughts about the war and politics into these vibrant and inflammatory cartoons. All these years later, the collection is a valuable anti-propaganda document with a message that survives the passage of years.
In 1999 the collection was published as Dr. Seuss Goes to War: World War II Editorial Cartoons of Theodor Seuss Geisel in a book written by Richard H. Minear. The book received critical acclaim upon release with reviewers loving Seuss’ scathing look at Hitler, and other fascists of the day. The release of the collection led to several museum exhibits featuring these works, that had until then fallen into obscurity. In 2009 a follow up edition, Dr. Seuss and Co. Go to War combined Seuss’ cartoons with those by other PM artists of the day.
The images contained in this article are from Dr Seuss Goes to War and are thanks to Booksbirdblog.
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