Theodor Geisel

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THESIS Theodor Geisel’s political activism during World War II, especially in the form of his political cartoons, heavily influenced his work as a children’s author, and impacted the messages of Horton Hears a Who and Yertle the Turtle. INTRODUCTION Dr. Seuss is known for his phenomenal creatures, invented words, and rhymes that surpassed absurdity and became something beautiful. Before that, though, Theodor Geisel was nationally noted for his political cartoons during World War II that enticed the mind to do more than think, but to ask questions and crave knowledge and justice. Dr. Seuss was not just a whimsical alter-ego of Mr. Geisel by any means, however. Dr. Seuss allowed Geisel to communicate his message to a …show more content…
They became shameful of their ancestry, and attempted to conceal it, to shield themselves from torment. Regardless of these efforts, Theodor Geisel was harassed in school and his family was mocked at home. He would later claim that because the Geisels were an established family, he was fortunate to have received minimal bullying, but this ordeal shaped the prejudices that were present in his political cartoons and cinema for the majority of his career (29). Following his childhood in Springfield, Geisel attended college at Dartmouth University. He received excellent grades there, and majored in English. He was a prominent writer and cartoonist for the school’s comedy magazine, Jack O’ Lantern, and his first official writing position was chief editor of that magazine. He was banned from writing for it after he was caught violating prohibition. Unwilling to give up his writing position, he wrote under the pseudonym “Seuss”, and was never discovered by campus authorities. After graduation, he attended Oxford for graduate school. He did well at first, but soon the doodles in the margins of his notes began to conquer entire pages, and he realized graduate school was simply not for him. In the short time spent there, though, he met Helen Palmer, and fell in love. The two were married in 1927, and throughout their relationship she supported his artistic and literary career, and
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