Indifference in the book Night by Elie Weisel

Topics: Human, Nobel Prize, Nazi Germany Pages: 3 (959 words) Published: January 13, 2015
Mrs. Packer B1
“What are its courses and inescapable consequences? Is it a philosophy? Is there a philosophy of indifference conceivable? Can one possibly view indifference as a virtue? Is it necessary at times to practice it simply to keep one’s sanity, live normally, enjoy a fine meal and a glass of wine, as the world around us experiences harrowing upheavals?” (Elie Weisel Nobel Peace Prize Speech). Indifference denotes an absence of feeling or interest; unconcern, an absence of concern or solicitude, calm or cool indifference in the face of what might be expected to cause uneasiness or apprehension; listlessness, an absence of inclination or interest, a languid indifference to what is going on around them. “Yet, for the person who is indifferent, his or her neighbor are of no consequence. And, therefore, their lives are meaningless. Their hidden or even visible anguish is of no interest. Indifference reduces the other to an abstraction” (Elie Weisel Nobel Peace Prize Speech). It is so easy for one to simply take feeling out of all perspectives in life. It is easier for one to look away from their troubles and allow a void of emptiness to replace a wrenching sadness filling the body. The true horror of the Holocaust resided in the individuals who knew, but did not help.  These individuals understood what was happening, but blanketed their actions by following orders from the Nazi soldiers and Hitler or simply evading their own moral and ethical responsibilities.

Indifference ties closely into inhumanity. The definition of inhumanity states that an inhuman being is savage, brutal, and cruel. Although the German citizens did not kill mass populations of Jews, they acted as though nothing was happening in their backyard. “In a way, to be indifferent to that suffering is what makes the human being inhuman. Indifference, after all, is more dangerous than anger and hatred. Anger can at times be creative….But indifference is...
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