Study Guide

Maus: A Survivor's Tale Book II, Chapter 5

By Art Spiegelman

Book II, Chapter 5

The Second Honeymoon

  • Art is at work at his desk. He’s listening to tapes of his father when he receives a phone call from Mala, in Florida. Mala tells him that Vladek had to be taken to the hospital for water in his lungs. When Art calls the hospital, the hospital says that Vladek isn’t there. When he calls Mala, she tells him that Vladek had actually left the hospital because he wanted to be taken to his New York hospital.
  • Art flies down to Florida to help out. In Florida, Art and Vladek sit out on the patio. A small plane flies by overhead, reminding Vladek about the time he and Anja finally left Poland for Sweden, where they awaited visas to the United States. In Sweden, Vladek worked his way up from a day laborer to a salesman at a department store.
  • Later that night, Art and Vladek board a plane for New York, where an ambulance takes them to La Guardia hospital. After a few tests, the doctor gives Vladek a clean bill of health and sends him home.
  • A month later, Art visits Vladek and Mala in Rego Park, where they are getting ready to sell the house.
  • Vladek tells Art about the days after the Americans arrived. Vladek and his friend Shivek were sent to a displaced persons camp at Garmisch-Partenkirchen, where they await their identity papers. Vladek has another attack of typhus, and only a year later learns that he suffers from diabetes as well.
  • From the displaced persons camp, they leave for Hannover, where they learn that many Jews are at a displaced persons camp in Belsen. Here, Vladek sees some friends from Sosnowiec, who tell him that Anja is back in Sosnowiec. They warn Vladek about trying to reclaim his property, however; they tell him about one Jew who was beaten and hanged by some Poles who had taken over his property.
  • Back in Sosnowiec, Anja visits a fortuneteller, who tells her that she will go to a faraway place on a ship and have a new life, with a little boy. Finally, she receives a letter from Vladek saying that he is on his way home.
  • It takes Art three or four weeks to get back to Sosnowiec, and he has an emotional reunion with Anja.
  • At this point, Vladek asks Art to turn off the tape recorder. Vladek is tired, and accidentally calls Art “Richieu.”
  • The last image is of Vladek and Anja’s gravestone.