I was talking to my sister’s boyfriend, Chris, last night and I’m not quite sure how it came up in converstaion, but he started telling me about an episode of PBS’s Independent Lens called The Political Dr. Seuss. I haven’t watched it yet, but did read a summary of it on the Independent Len’s page, and wanted to record this somewhere so I didn’t forget to watch it later. That page summarizes the documentary as follows:
THE POLITICAL DR. SEUSS traces Theodor Geisel’s life from his boyhood in Springfield, Massachusetts through his final days living atop Mt. Soledad in La Jolla, California. The film explores his little-known World War II era cartoons, his educational and propaganda film work—including the “Private Snafu” films he made with Chuck Jones—and Design for Death, his Academy Award-winning documentary on Japan, which is seen here for the first time since its original theatrical release in 1947. In-depth interviews with his widow Audrey, his biographers Judith and Neil Morgan (Dr. Seuss and Mr. Geisel) and Richard H. Minear (Dr. Seuss Goes to War), his long-time Random House publisher Robert Bernstein and editor Michael Frith, and historian Michael Kazin—not to mention Geisel’s own words through voice-overs—bring the man to life. THE POLITICAL DR. SEUSS is not only an intriguing portrait of Theodor Geisel but also a fascinating lens through which to view the complex political and social history of the 20th century.