Creators of Comic Book Legend Superman, Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, Inducted Into Jewish-American Hall of Fame
November 17, 2021
Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster — the late creators of Superman, the first comic book superhero — were inducted this past weekend into the Jewish-American Hall of Fame.
The online ceremony — co-hosted by the Combat Antisemitism Movement (CAM) — told Siegel and Shuster’s life stories and highlighted their contributions to American culture.
“Superman fought for truth, justice, and the American way, and I’d like to think so does the Jewish-American Hall of Fame,” JAHF Founder and Director Mel Wacks said.
Siegel’s daughter, Lara Siegel Larson, recalled that her father had faced antisemitic bullying when he was young, and that the comic book characters he created later in life were “his way of fighting back.”
“He wasn’t only fighting back for himself, he was fighting back for everyone,” she said.
Her father, she noted, saw his typewriter as a tool to “take what is inside you and express it to other people.”
CAM Advisory Board Member and former U.S. Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism Elan Carr said in his remarks at the event, “Creating one of America’s greatest fictional icons would by itself have earned these two Jewish Americans a place in the Hall of Fame. But it’s not only that Superman was invented by Jews, no less significant is that Jewish ideas and experiences are reflected in so many aspects of the Superman story…Winning the war against antisemitism requires that we turn the tables and proactively combat it through philosemitism, namely by driving narratives that inculcate an appreciation of the incredible story of the Jewish people, and that create an affection for the values of Judaism that have shaped so many aspects of our society and our world.”
A full recording of the 2021 Jewish-American Hall of Fame induction ceremony can be viewed below:
Founded in 1969, the JAHF is a division of the American Jewish Historical Society (AJHS). Over the past half century, the JAHF has inducted more than 50 Jewish Americans from all fields of endeavor, ranging from Asser Levy, one of the first Jewish settlers in what would become New York City, to Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the judicial and feminist icon.
To learn more about the Jewish-American Hall of Fame, visit: amuseum.org