Night by Elie Wiesel The story of a young Jewish boy sent to the concentration camps during the Holocaust Story of his struggle to survive, his struggle to keep his family together, and his struggle with God.
WW II Background & The HolocaustA. Germany was crippled by the Great Depression. React with the rise of the Nazi party.B. Believed the Aryan race (Germans and Northern Europeans) should rule the world. 1. “Final Solution” – elimination of all Jews. Estimated 6 million Jews are killed in concentration camps.
1. Gradually stripped Jews of their rights: a. Boycotted Jewish businesses b. Vandalized Jewish businesses and homes c. Forced to wear a yellow Star of David
a. Eventually barred Jews from public facilities b. Transported to ghettos – “for their own safety” c. Sent to concentration campsghettos: The Nazis revived the medieval term ghetto to describe their device of concentration andcontrol, the compulsory "Jewish Quarter." Ghettos were usually established in the poor sections of a city,where most of the Jews from the city and surrounding areas were subsequently forced to reside. Oftensurrounded by barbed wire or walls, the ghettos were sealed. Established mostly in eastern Europe (e.g.,Lodz, Warsaw, Vilna, Riga, or Minsk), the ghettos were characterized by overcrowding, malnutrition, andheavy labor. All were eventually dissolved, and the Jews murdered.
Entrance to Auschwitz in 1941. The sloganArbeit macht frei over the gate translates as "Work(shall) make (you) free" (or "work liberates")
Selection for DeathSelection at the Birkenau ramp, 1944 — Birkenau main entrance visible in the background
Auschwitz II (Birkenau)—an exterminationcamp and the site of the deaths of roughly 1 million Jews, 75,000 Poles, gay men and some 19,000 Roma (also known as gypsies) Auschwitz III (Monowitz)—served as a labor camp.
•The total number of deaths at the camps is estimatedat around 1-1.5 million.•About 700 prisoners attempted escape from thecamps; about 300 were successful. Commonpunishment for escape attempts was death bystarvation. The families of successful escapees weresometimes arrested and interned in Auschwitz anddisplayed to deter others from trying to escape.
(Above) Left - An enormous pile of clothing taken from children who were gassed at Auschwitz. Right - Bales of hair shaven from women at Auschwitz, used to make felt-yarn.(Below) After liberation, an Allied soldier displays a stash of gold wedding rings taken from victims at Buchenwald.
“The world is too dangerous to live in— Not because of the people who do evil,But because of the people who sit and let it happen.” -Albert Einstein