Imagery Essay from the Book Night

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The Power of Imagery in Night

Imagery is a portrait that is painted in your mind, a portrait that makes you feel you are there. The Holocaust is full of disturbing and horrible images of death. Pictures of inhumanity that just make you sick looking at them. In many images you see the pale, unemotional faces whose lives were changed for eternity, and yet with these images some believe that the Holocaust did not happen. In the Holocaust there was mass genocide of over six million Jews. Also many ethnic Poles, gypsies, Soviet civilians, Soviet prisoners of war, disabled people, homosexual men, and political and religious opponents were targeted by the Nazis to be exterminated. Hitler’s ultimate goal during the Holocaust was to ensure the creation of an Arian race. Fortunately the Holocaust was ended in 1945 when Germany was defeated. There were many survivors of the Holocaust, one of them being Elie Wiesel. He would later write a novel called Night, which is about his life experiences during the Holocaust. There are many powerful and telling pieces of imagery in the novel Night, such being Elie’s first day at Auschwitz, the hanging of the child at the gallows, and Juliek’s last symphony.

Elie stats, “Never shall I forget the night, the first night in camp that turned my life into one long night seven times sealed” (Wiesel, 34). On this night Elie notices flames bursting into the almost hopeless sky. The smoke from the flames was as dark as coal and the smell worse then sulfur. What could be feeding such a raging flame, Elie wonders. As Elie gets closer he sees what is feeding the hungry flames, “Babies! Yes, I did see this, with my own eyes…children thrown into the flames” (32). He could not believe what he was seeing “I pinched myself…How was it possible that men, women, and children were being burned and that the world kept silent? No. All this could not be real. A nightmare perhaps…” (32). The millions of ashes in the sky that Elie and...
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