Night Book Report

1229 Words5 Pages
Eliezer is a 12-year-old Orthodox Jewish boy living with his family in the Transylvanian town of Sighet. Eliezer is the only son of the family, and his parents are shopkeepers. His father is a highly respected within Sighet’s Jewish community. Eliezer also 2 older sisters, Hilda and Béa, and a younger sister named Tzipora. Eliezer is taught Jewish mysticism under Moshe, a local pauper.

In 1944 German armies occupy Hungary, and soon move into Sighet. Jewish community leaders are arrested, valuables are confiscated, and all of the Jews are then forced to wear yellow stars. The Jews were all gathered into small ghettos, and soon after, the Germans began to deport them to Auschwitz. Eliezer’s family is among the last to leave Sighet and it is then Eliezer began his horrible experience as being apart of the Holocaust.

During this long and painful experience, Eliezer questioned his faith more than once. Before he and his family were forced onto the camps, Eliezer’s studies in Jewish mysticism taught him that if God is good and He is everywhere, than the whole world must therefore be good. But his faith in the world is broken by the cruelty and evil he witnesses during the Holocaust. He wonders how God would even let such an evil take place, he feels that if the world is so sick and cruel, than God must also be sick and cruel or not exist at all.

Moshe is asked why he prays and replies, “I pray to the God within me that He will give me strength to ask him the right questions.” Meaning, questioning is a fundamental to the idea of faith in God. The horrible experiences of the Holocaust force Eliezer to ask questions about the nature of good and evil and about weather God exits or not. But the fact he asks these questions reflects his commitment to God.

Eliezer not only suffers from experiences Nazi persecution, but also cruelty he sees fellow prisoners inflict on each other, and becomes aware of the cruelty of which he himself is capable. Everything he experiences shows how horribly people can treat one another, which troubles him.

The Nazis are the first insensible cruelty Eliezer experiences. Though, when they first appear, they do not seem terrible in any way shape or form. Eliezer recounts, “Our first impressions of the Germans were most reassuring. . . Their attitude toward their hosts was distant, but polite.

More about Night Book Report

Open Document