Week 28–Reviewing Night and Previewing The Hiding Place

UPDATE: It is Sunday night and I am updating your work for this week, to make it lighter. Please don’t go by the email you received on Friday. I don’t want you to read as much this week 🙂

Entrance to Auschwitz, Birkenau, Poland

“And this is why I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endured suffering and humiliation. We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Sometimes we must interfere. When human lives are endangered, when human dignity is in jeopardy, national borders and sensitivities become irrelevant. Wherever men and women are persecuted because of their race, religion, or political views, that place must–at that moment–become the center of the universe.” — Nobel Peace Prize Speech, Elie Weisel ❤

Class Discussion

Madness–

  • “Did I write it so as not to go mad or, on the contrary, to go mad in order to understand the nature of madness, the immense, terrifying madness that had erupted in history and in the conscience of mankind.” (from the Preface)

Faith–

  • “Why should I sanctify His name? The Almighty, the eternal and terrible Master of the Universe, chose to be silent. What was there to thank Him for?” (pg. 33).
  • “Against my will, I found myself whispering the words: ‘Yisgadal, veyiskadash, shmey raba . . . May His name be exalted and sanctified . . .” My heart was about to burst. There. I was face-to-face with the Angel of Death.” (pg 34) –faith against your will.
  • The Rabbi said, “It is over. God is no longer with us.” (pg. 76)
  • “But I have faith. Faith in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and even in His creation. Without it no action would be possible. And action is the only remedy to indifference, the most insidious danger of all.”  (Nobel Peace Prize Speech).

Hope and Optimism–

  • Despite warnings from Moishe the Beadle, the people did not believe or run!!!
  • “The trees were in bloom. It was a year like so many others, with its spring, its engagements, its weddings, and its births. [Like Matthew 24] The people were saying, ‘The Red Army is advancing with giant strides . . . Hitler will not be able to harm us, even if he wants to . . .’ Yes we even doubted his resolve to exterminate us. Annihilate an entire people? Wipe out a population dispersed throughout so many nations? So many millions of people! By what means? In the middle of the twentieth century!  . . . . In those days it was still possible to buy emigration certificates to Palestine.” (pg. 8)
  • Who knows, they may be sending us away for our own good.” (pg. 21)
  • “The Germans were already in our town, the Fascists were already in power, the verdict was already out–and the Jews in Sighet were still smiling.” (pg. 10)
  • “To the last moment, people clung to hope.” (pg. 15)
  • “The yellow star? So what? It’s not lethal . . .” (Poor father! Of what then did you die?) (pg. 11)
  • “Little by little, life returned to ‘normal.'” (pg. 11)

Irony

  • Joy— “There was joy, yes, joy. People must have thought there could be no greater torment in God’s hell than that of being stranded here, on the sidewalk, among the bundles, in the middle of the street, under the blazing sun. Anything seemed preferable to that.” (pg. 16)
  • They could have escaped!!! pg 20
  • They should have stayed in the hospital!!!! pg 82– “After the war, I learned the fate of those who had remained at the infirmary. They were, quite simply, liberated by the Russians, two days after the evacuation.”

Symbols– The Fire

  • The woman on the train that saw the flames
  • The babies being thrown into the flames
  • The huge chimney and flames
  • Daniel 3– Nebuchadnezzar and the fiery furnace
  • Isaiah 43:1 “When you go through the fire, I will be with you.”
  • “Do not be surprised by the fiery trial you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you.” 1 Peter 4:12

 

“NIGHT. No one was praying for the night to pass quickly. The stars were but sparks of the immense conflagration that was consuming us. Were this conflagration to be extinguished one day, nothing would be left in the sky but extinct stars and unseeing eyes.”

Monday–

  • WWI–We are going to rewind to WWI to a poem called “Dulce and Decorum Est” by Wilfred Owen. There are notes on the bottom of this page that explain the meaning of this poem. Please watch the video on this page too.

Tuesday–

  • Finish watching the interview with Elie Wiesel

Wednesday–

  • Begin reading The Hiding Place. Read chapters 1 “The One Hundredth Birthday Party” and 2 “Full Table” (pg. 17-44)

Thursday–

  • Read chapters 3 “Karel” and 4 “The Watch Shop” (pg. 45-76)
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