Symbolism In The Boy In The Striped Pajamas

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I have read many books in my lifetime. One of the main books that I have enjoyed is The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. The book is about the friendship of two nine-year-old boys, Shmuel, who is Jewish, and Bruno, a German, that share the same birthday in 1940s Nazi Germany. In this paper, I will talk about what this Holocaust genre novel is about and the symbolism that is latent in this documented horror, seen through a child’s eyes.
In the book, Bruno is upset when he finds out that his family is moving from the fancy life in Berlin to a place in the countryside called Auschwitz. This place is a concentration camp in World War II, a structure of Nazi Germany and an extermination camp managed by the 3rd Reich in Poland. He notices that in this
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First, we read a lot the words “out” and “with” instead “Auschwitz” through the voices of Bruno and Gretel. They don’t notice that Germans are killing Jews: “When Bruno asks, Gretel says, ‘Out with the people who lived here before us, I expect.’" (3.25) -. The second symbol that is evident are the striped pajamas. They remind us of the hard dissimilarities between Germans and Jews. Clothes are made for self-definition, a means of letting the globe who we are. Removing by force the clothes is a way of assaulting their personal honor. The banded pajamas are one of the many German methods of controlling their hostages. Another image from the storyline is Bruno’s bedroom window. That window is the eyes of Bruno’s conscience: “He put his face to the glass and saw what was out there […] his hands stayed by his sides because something made him feel very cold and unsafe.” (2.20). Through the glass, Bruno sees the war camp and his captives. This window is the symbol of the innocence, purity, and impeccability for our little boy and he starts to question what is that odd building and is not happy living in darkness. The last symbol is the fence that separates the two worlds: “Here was a huge wire fence that ran along the length of the house […] the fence was very high, higher even than the house they were standing in […]” (4.31). The wall represents the horrid terror of the Jewish massacre by the Germans. Crossing that fence can execute you.…show more content…
The German child’s father is the leader of the military of the camp, and as a result is in charge. This drama explores the evils of the times through the main characters of the book, Bruno, and Shmuel. Furthermore, some may even see that their impersonation has multiple purposes, that of eyewitness, executioner, opponent, or martyr. This is an amazing novel. I would put in a good word for anyone who enjoys survival. I will end with a quote by the English poet, John Betjeman: “Childhood is measured out by sounds and smells and sights, before the dark hour of reason
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