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Dr. Seuss Goes to War: The World War II Editorial Cartoons of Theodor Seuss Geisel by [Richard H. Minear, Theodor Seuss Geisel, Art Spiegelman]

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Dr. Seuss Goes to War: The World War II Editorial Cartoons of Theodor Seuss Geisel Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 475 ratings

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Editorial Reviews Review

Before Yertle, before the Cat in the Hat, before Little Cindy-Lou Who (but after Mulberry Street), Dr. Seuss (Theodor Geisel) made his living as a political cartoonist for New York newspaper PM. Seuss drew over 400 cartoons in just under two years for the paper, reflecting the daily's New Deal liberal slant. Starting in early 1941, when PM advocated American involvement in World War II, Seuss savaged the fascists with cunning caricatures. He also turned his pen against America's internal enemies--isolationists, hoarders, complainers, anti-Semites, and anti-black racists--and urged Americans to work together to win the war. The cartoons are often funny, peopled with bowler-hatted "everymen" and what author Art Spiegelman calls "Seussian fauna" in his preface. They are also often very disturbing--Seuss draws brutally racist images of the Japanese and even attacks Japanese Americans on numerous occasions. Perhaps most disturbing is the realization that Seuss was just reflecting the wartime zeitgeist.

Dr. Seuss Goes to War marks the first time most of these illustrations have appeared in print since they were first published. Richard H. Minear's introduction and explanatory chapters contextualize the 200 editorial cartoons (some of whose nuances might otherwise be lost on the modern reader). Those who grew up on Seuss will enjoy early glimpses of his later work; history buffs will enjoy this new--if playful and contorted--angle on World War II. --Sunny Delaney

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Few fans of Dr. Seuss's whimsy are likely to be aware that before authoring The Cat in the Hat Theodor Seuss Geisel penned editorial cartoons for the New York daily PM. This new collection presents approximately half the newspaper cartoons that Geisel drafted for the pro-New Deal paper from the start of 1941 (when his main targets were the isolationists who opposed U.S. intervention in European and Asian affairs) until 1943 (when he accepted a commission in the U.S. Army). Minear (history, Univ. of Massachusetts) has done a fine job of selecting, arranging in thematic order, and providing historical commentary for these cartoons, which are full of Geisel's expected visual wit; seeing the early development of his eccentric animal menagerie is a special treat. As Art Spiegelman notes in his introduction, Geisel's Uncle Sam seems to have been practice for what would become the Cat in the Hat. "The prototype for the cat's famous headgear is actually...Uncle Sam's red-and-white-striped top hat! The Cat in the Hat is America!" writes Spiegelman. Recommended for larger libraries.AKent Worcester, Marymount Manhattan Coll., New York
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B00EXCAJ8E
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ The New Press (September 10, 2013)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ September 10, 2013
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 58860 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 326 pages
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.7 out of 5 stars 475 ratings

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Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
475 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on October 16, 2018
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Early Stages of What Will Become Dr, Suess CLASSICS
By C Wm (Andy) Anderson on October 15, 2018
This is an interesting historical account of the fight by one publication, led largely by the efforts of the man who would become famous to us as Dr. Suess, to go up against hatred and discrimination of Jewish people and African-Americans. I especially was interested in the narrator’s commentary regarding “Isolationism” and the publication’s (as well as Dr. Suess’s) omission to attack hatred and fear of Japanese-Americans, but that’s a detail best learned by reading this thoughtful, inspiring history.

BLUSH FACTOR: No worries here.

EDITING FOR GRAMMAR AND TYPOS: This is professionally edited.


Instead of an excerpt, I’m attaching two screen shots of illustrations that, in my view, show the early versions of characters used by Dr. Suess in his books for children. By the way, I learned only from this book’s explanation that Suess, when correctly pronounced, actually rhymes with royce. Just one minor bit of knowledge that will form an ever-so-slight crease in my brain!

THE WRITING FLOW & STYLE: The narrative, before and after the 45 illustrations, is interesting and written in a manner that, for nonfiction, is more inviting than I had expected. Mind you, I would have preferred to place the illustrations throughout the text, rather than in, basically, smack dab in the middle section. Yet, I am delighted with what I did learn, especially what I learned about the fight against Lindbergh and his isolationist stance against America’s opposition to Hitler.


Five stars out of five.

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Reviewed in the United States on April 13, 2021
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Reviewed in the United States on October 16, 2018
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Top reviews from other countries

Sebastian Palmer
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting…
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 10, 2022
Robert Small
5.0 out of 5 stars Very funny insight into the politics and humour of a time ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 30, 2017
One person found this helpful
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5.0 out of 5 stars This is more for adult fans of Dr Seuss, ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 9, 2015
L'orso Solitario
5.0 out of 5 stars Still relevant today!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 25, 2017
One person found this helpful
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5.0 out of 5 stars One of the greatest illustrators of the 20th century!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 10, 2005
2 people found this helpful
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