Monday, February 20, 2012

Night

This one is for my freshman English class, as we travel through Night together...

Each time I teach this book and research the background not only of the Holocaust but of Elie Wiesel, the author, I am horrified by the perpetration of such vile acts.  I am also always in awe of the life that Wiesel made for himself after liberation, of his work for peace and the freedom of persecution sought for all people.  It is an honor to teach about his life.

This is a story of a young boy, just fifteen years old, growing up in a devoutly religious family in Eastern Europe.  As his family is swept up in one of the greatest horrors of the 20th century, we as readers experience it along with Elie.  He writes almost abruptly, without flowery description or drama; he relates clearly and succinctly the changes in the laws that affect his family, the move into the ghetto, and eventually his journey through a variety of killing centers and labor camps.  Throughout his searing tale, lies the story of the relationship with his father.  This is a story of hate and bigotry, but it is also the story of a child's love for his father and how far a person can bend before they break.  This book will change the way you view the world, forever...the ashes will leave you scarred for life.

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