Today on the site, J. Caleb Mozzocco interviews Mark Fertig, the editor of Take That, Adolf!, a recent book on the anti-Nazi comics of World War II.
The value in these comics lies in the truth they tell about the America of the war years, a truth that is sometimes overshadowed in our pop culture reverence for the American fighting man and the “greatest generation.” The racism found in the comics, movies and radio programs of the period is as ugly as it is ever-present, so it couldn’t be ignored.
I guess it would have been possible to make a book about these covers and stories while minimizing the topic in the text and being extra careful about which images to include and which ones to leave out, but I would have felt like a fraud if I’d done so. And while the book is undoubtedly a celebration of the comic book’s contribution to the war effort, my goal was also to tell the whole story, warts and all.
I doubt anyone would have noticed if I’d omitted something as obscure as Dell’s The Funnies #64, but it was on newsstands in 1942 and so I needed it in the book. And if I’d not mentioned Fawcett’s Steamboat, then I couldn’t tell about the schoolkids who were horrified by the way the he was depicted and actually managed to do something about it. That’s a story worth knowing, particularly because we seem to have made so little progress on race in the seven decades since the war ended.
—News. Eleanor Davis was one of eight people arrested yesterday at a Georgia Board of Regents meeting. They were protesting policies that restrict access for undocumented immigrants.
Board members left the meeting when the protest began. When they returned, the demonstrators continued their protests. Several demonstrators repeated the phrase “To come for one of us is to come for all of us,” before their removal.
The demonstrators were taken to the Fulton County Jail.