Maus: A Survivor's Tale
by Art Spiegelman
Analysis: Narrator Point of View
Who is the narrator, can she or he read minds, and, more importantly, can we trust her or him?
First Person (Central Narrator)
Maus goes back and forth between two first person narrators: Vladek and Art. We see the story unfold from both of their points of view. The use of a central first person narrator puts us deep into the action of the story: we feel Vladek’s anxiety and fear as he endures concentration camp life, and we experience Art’s conflicted emotions over his relationship with his father. Since there is no third-person narrator, we don’t have the benefit of an objective or dispassionate view of their characters – but we don’t feel we need any. The use of a personal perspective such as the central first person narrator is enough to establish our intimacy with the characters.