29 February 2012

Superman is Jewish!

In Up, Up, and Oy Vey The author Simcha Weinstein explains his belief that superman is Jewish. He isn’t just Jewish he is Moses. In the introduction Weinstein gives a background on what he is going to talk about in the book. He explains some of his concepts. He gives us a list of comic book creators who are Jewish. He also relates some of the super hero’s to people from the bible. In chapter one Weinstein goes on to explain how Superman was created and how he relates to the Jewish culture. Superman was created in the 1930’s but wasn’t published in till 1938 three years before America joined world war two. Superman was created by two Jewish men Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. Before superman was published in 1938 the two boys had been sending copies of the comic to many people being rejected, for fear of being discovered as Jews the two boys were submitting Superman under the false name Bernard J. Kenton. Action Comics was looking for a new character and in 1938 they published Superman and paid the boys 130 dollars. The issue had sold out; today a mint condition copy would be worth 450,000 dollars. Superman was created with a secret identity which soon became a trend. With or without knowing it the boys created a Jewish super hero. They also related a lot of real history into the comic. In 1939 the first issue of superman Lois had ended up in front of a Nazi firing squad when superman came to the rescue. This was two years before America had entered into the world war. In Germany at this time Adolf Hitler had begun his quest for the perfect race and had started to harass the Jewish population. The similarities don’t stop there in issue ten supermen was dispatched to cover the Dukalia American Sports Festival which was really similar to the Berlin Olympics which were taking place. In real life the enemy noticed superman as a Jew and attacked the comic and its creators. Siegel’s Jewish culture was the biggest inspiration for superman. The first issue of superman describes superman’s journey to earth which some would consider to be closely related to the journey of Moses. Superman also had a biblical name, the El is an ancient name for God, and all of the great prophets have the same name ending. The bible also has an influence in superman’s weakness; Samson is weakened when his hair is cut the same way superman is weakened with kryptonite. In action comics issue seven, superman even made a statement about Samson. Then in superman issue two Clark has to interview a scientist very similar to Hitler, the scientist even had invented a poisonous gas. Superman has now been recognized many ways throughout the 60’s and 70’s, and as long as no one knows he is Jewish he can perform miracles.

This book relates superman to an unavoidable connection to the Jewish culture. Who would have thought the depth behind superman? Yes it is easy to relate superman to a time period, but to his ethnic background is a whole other story. I have never read a superman comic but I feel that many people would have had to read between the lines so to speak to really understand superman is Jewish. Once the similarity to the bible was pointed out there is no denying superman’s religious beliefs or the creators for that matter. Superman was successful because those two boys from Ohio had put a lot of themselves in to superman. This made superman relatable to many other people in America. It made superman a human to with thoughts and feelings relating to everyone else. The creators of superman have created a legacy. All super hero comics fallow their footsteps and only wish they could be that successful. In a time where the Jewish people were being hated upon the boys who created superman created a positive light for the Jewish culture. This was something really needed in that time.

1 comment:

  1. Not a bad summary, but you need to proofread! Superman is a name! So it should be capitalized!

    Also, how does this relate to another text we've read?

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