Night: the Holocaust and Figurative Language

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“Night” by Elie Wiesel is an autobiography in which Elie’s life during the Holocaust is explained. Elie Wiesel uses imagery, figurative language, and pathos as tools to express the horrors he experienced while living through a nightmare, the Holocaust.

Elie describes his experiences with imagery. “Open rooms everywhere. Gaping doors and windows looked out into the woid. It all belonged to everyone since it no longer belonged to anyone.” “Some were crying. They used whatever strength they had left to cry. Why had they let themselves be brought here? Why didn’t they die in their beds? Their words were interspersed with sobs.” (35). Elie explains how people reacted to finding their friends alive. You can picture how desperately they cried with an understanding as to why they were crying. “The two men were no longer alive. Their tongues were hanging out, swollen and bluish. But the third rope was still moving: the child, too light, was still breathing. And so he remained for more than half an hour, lingering between life and death…He was still alive when I passed him. His tongue was still red, his eyes not yet extinguished” (64-65). As a way to show control, keep fear and prevent rebellion, “prisoners” were hung. Elie describes the gruesome hanging of a young boy as he died a slow, painful death. The imagery throughout the book describes, with detail, things that couldn’t be imagined alone. Elie writes his autobiography with figurative language. “My soul had been invaded-and devoured-by a black flame” (37). Elie no longer felt like he was living. He uses a metaphor to compare the feeling of his defeat to his soul being eaten. “All I could hear was the violin, and it was as if Juliek’s soul had become his bow. He was playing his life. His whole being was gliding over the strings. His unfulfilled hopes. His charred past, his extinguished future.” (95). Elie meets Juliek, a man he knew before who played the violin in the Buna band, at the concentration camp in...
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