Night by Elie Wiesel: Assessment of the Book

Pages: 5 (1717 words) Published: August 3, 2008
Response to an autobiographical text:

1.What is your Text about?

Night is an autobiography by a man named Eliezer Wiesel. The autobiography is a quite disturbing record of Elie’s childhood in the Nazi death camps Auschwitz and Buchenwald during world war two. While Night is Elie Wiesel’s testimony about his experiences in the Holocaust, Wiesel is not, precisely speaking, the story’s protagonist. Night is narrated by a boy named Eliezer who represents Elie, but details set apart the character Eliezer from the real life Elie. For instance, Eliezer wounds his foot in the concentration camps, while Elie actually wounded his knee. Wiesel fictionalizes seemingly unimportant details because he wants to distinguish his narrator from himself. It is almost impossibly painful for a survivor to write about his Holocaust experience, and the mechanism of a narrator allows Wiesel to distance himself somewhat from the experience, to look in from the outside.

2.Facts about Eliezer Wiesel.

Elie Wiesel was born on September 30, 1928. Elie is a writer, political activist, Nobel Laureate, and surviver of the Holocaust. He is the author of over 40 books, the best known of which is Night. Wiesel was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986. The Norwegian Nobel Committee called him a “messenger to mankin”. Elie was born in Sighet, a small town in Romania, to his father Shlomo and Mother Sarah Wiesel. Elie Wiesel had three sisters: Hilda and Bea, who were older than he, and Tzipora, who was the youngest in the family. On May 16, 1944, the Hungarian authorities deported the Jewish community, including Elie and his family, in Sighet to Auschwitz – Birkenau. Auschwitz was the first camp Elie was sent to. On January 28, 1945, just a few weeks after the two were marched to Buchenwald and only months before the camp was liberated by the American Army on April 11. Sadly Wiesel's father suffered from dysentery, starvation, and exhaustion, and was later sent to the crematoria. The last word his father spoke was “Eliezer”, Elie's name. After the war, Elie was placed in a French orphanage, where he learned the French language and was soon reunited with his two older sisters, Hilda and Bea (Tzipora was murdered at the camps), who had also survived the war. In 1948, Elie began studying philosophy at the Sorbonne. Elie also taught hebrew, and was a choir master before going on to becoming a Journalist, for Israli and French newspapers. In 1955, Wiesel moved to New York City, after becoming a U.S. citizen. Due to injuries suffered in a traffic accident, he was forced to stay in New York past his visa's expiration and was therefore offered citizenship to resolve his status. In the U.S. It was here where Elie wrote a further 40 books. 3.Events

One of the forst things in the novel that got my attention was after Moche’ had escaped from the Nazi’s. As he was telling the stories of what happened, he said that people were forced to dig their own graves, and then shot dead in them. As if this wasn’t bad enough, the Nazi’s would deal with the babies by throwing them into the air, and use them for target practice. Of course the babies are still alive when this happens. To get joy out of this is unimaginable. How inhumain must you be before this seems ok, before you can through the live body of a tiny infant into the air, shoot it down, and go home feeling fine, without regret or remource. At the first concentration camp, the Nazi’s had dug pits which were set alight. The Nazi’s would then throw people that were of no use to them such as infants, or elderly people, who were unable to work, into the creamation pits. The worst part about this is that these pits were used to dispose of people who were still alive. These people are alive, alive when they are thrown to burn away into nothing but a black disfigured and charcoaled corpes. I can’t even begin to imagin the pain and suffering that was felt by these poor people. This doesn’t effect me...
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