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The Holocaust Essay

1357 words - 5 pages

During the Second World War, and unspeakable injustice occurred. Six million Jewish people were slaughtered solely based on their religion. Men, women, and children were taken from their homes and taken under control of the Nazi?s. Their valuables were stolen. They were put to work in concentration camps where they were starved, beaten and tortured. Their identities were stolen, their names taken away, and identification tattoos were engraved in their bodies. Scientific experiments were preformed on these people with no anesthesia. Men and women alike were dragged to death pits where they were shot in the back of the head at point blank range, falling into mass graves while other were gassed in large chambers and tossed into the crematories.Although the holocaust was a time of wrong doings, it helped to shape the identities of the following generations. It is important to learn about the Holocaust and the effect that it has had on individuals and society,this helped to shape who we all are today. By learning about the Holocaust, we learn the importance of group conformity and how it is important to be able to find a balance between this and your individual identity. We learn that, ?Memories, even painful memories, are all we have. In fact, they are the only thing we are. So we must take very good care of them.? (Wiesel) Through texts, such as ?Night? by Elie Wiesel, films, such as ?Europa, Europa? and testimonies from Holocaust survivors such as Jack Trumpeter, we learn about the various struggles that people have had with their identity and how they dealt with it and how it has made them what they are today.The main character within the book ?Night? was Elie Wiesel himself. Throughout the book Elie struggles with many identity problems. The events of his childhood shaped who and what he is today. While in the camps Wiesel witnesses hangings, beatings, starvation, and torture. He witnesses his family, friends, and fellow Jews degraded and murdered. Weisel?s identity as a person and as well as a religious boy, was stolen from him. Wiesel searches throughout the book for his God. At one point he inquires, "Where is God now? Where is He? Here is - He is hanging here on this gallows..."(Wiesel, 62) With this quote we can feel the hurt and loss Wiesel must have felt. Within the concentration camps, the Jewish people had nothing but their faith to hold on to, and when this one single thing that you have is torn away from you, just imagine the torment Wiesel must have felt while experiencing the destruction of his faith. Wiesel mentions that his God was "murdered" by the Nazis people. He blames the Germans for his lack of faith during the hardest period of time in his life. Wiesel witnessed so much evil that his belief in the existence of God continued to weaken. Again he asks, "Where is my God? Where is He?"(Wiesel, 61) His religious identity was stolen from him. He used to be a religious person, but after such acts of inconceivable horror, how could...

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