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Vocabulary Words, Characters, Themes, Symbols, and Motifs from the memoir
Terms in this set (52)
author of the memoir; otherwise known as A-7713 in concentration camp
Elie's father (Shlomo)
cultured, unsentimental, held in high esteem within the Sighet community
owned a store with Elie's father; separated from Elie and Shlomo at Birkenau
Elie's oldest sister
Elie's older sister
Elie's youngest sister
Moishe the Beadle
Hasidic Jew, jack-of-all-trades, extremely poor, Elie's religious mentor
50-year-old woman who was separated from 2 of her sons; she has hallucinations of fire
tradesman from Sighet who is chosen to place his own father into the crematory
Rabbi whose son intentionally separated from him because he was a burden
man who was changed by concentration camp life; beat Elie's father for not marching correctly and demanded Elie's gold crown
Kapo who whipped Elie 25 times
Stein of Antwerp
relative of Elie's; Elie lies to Stein of Antwerp and tells him that his family is still alive
Polish musician who has eyeglasses and a pale face; plays violin
an SS physician assigned to the Auschwitz Concentration Camp; notorious for experiments on inmates
number tattooed on Elie's arm
knife and spoon
day of atonement; Jews typically fast on this day; topic of debate amongst the Jewish men in the concentration camp
How are the signs that appear in Auschwitz "Warning: Danger of Death" ironic?
the prisoners are surrounded by death
"Work Makes You Free"
the inscription over the gates at Auschwitz
Why does Elie refuse to give him his shoes?
The shoes are brand new, which is rare. In addition, Elie does not want to give up his shoes because they are all that he owns.
infectious disease marked by inflammation and ulceration of the lower part of the bowels, with diarrhea that becomes mucous and blood
What is Kaddish?
a prayer in the Jewish religion that is said for those who have passed away
confined area of a city in which members of a minority group are compelled to live because of social, legal, or economic pressure
place where bodies are burned
choice of who lives and who dies
hostility toward or discrimination against Jews as a religious or ethnic minority group, often accompanied by social, economic, or political discrimination
system of government that was ruled by a dictator who appeals to nationalism and promotes suspicion or hatred of foreigners within his own nation; form of totalitarianism
How old did Elie and his father say they were when they first entered the camp? Why?
They lied about their ages in order to avoid selection.
What is a death march?
Death marches were attempts to evacuate the concentration camps
Who are Kapos?
convicts who were offered work in a concentration camp in exchange for a reduced sentence or parole
What happens to Moishe the Beadle?
He is expelled from Sighet because he is a foreigner. He was forced to dig trenches. While there, Jews were shot and killed. Babies were used as targets for machine guns. Moishe escaped beacuse he was shot in the leg and taken for dead. Once he returned to Sighet, no one believe him because they thought he was insane or wanted pity.
Why is Elie's father called to a meeting of the Jewish Council?
He is well-respected within the Jewish community. He must attend the meeting because the Jews are going to be deported.
What is the name of the first camp that Elie and his father were taken to?
Describe their first train ride.
80 people were forced onto each cattle car. They were given one pail of water and some bread. If anyone tried to escape, they would be shot and killed.
What advice does the Blockalteste give to Elie about his father?
To eat his father's rations because in a concentration camp it is "every man for himself"
"Men to the left, women to the right!"
These are the first eight words that Elie hears from the SS officers. This is when Elie and Shlomo are separated from the women of their family.
"Form ranks of fives"
A frequent order given in the camps in order to take roll
Are allowed to play Beethoven?
No, Beethoven was German; only Germans could play German music.
Describe Juliek's death.
Juliek dies playing Beethoven on his violin
What is Elie's only link to Hungarian police today?
When and where do we see evidence of Elie's loss of faith?
the hanging of the young pipel; afterwards, Elie becomes angry with God
second camp that Elie and his father were sent to; worked in warehouse counting nuts, bolts, and electrical parts
How long do they stay in Gleiwitz?
What are the subcamps of Auschwitz?
Birkenau, Auschwitz I (torture center), and Buna (work camp)
Where is Elie's father at the end of the story? Why?
Elie's father is in an infirmary in Buchenwald because he is dying.
concentration camp that Elie and his father go to on the death march; this is where Elie's father dies in the infirmary
List two internal conflicts that Elie faces throughout the memoir.
Elie is conflicted about his beliefs in God. After the hanging of the young pipel, Elie is angry with God for allowing such horrific events to occur. As a result, Elie loses complete faith.
Elie also faces internal conflict near the end of his journey when he grudgingly gives his father his own ration of soup. Elie feels as if he must be responsible for his father; however, he does not want to give up his rations because he is also starving.
What connotations are evoked by this memoir?
sadness, conflict, struggle, strife, heartache, loss, anger
How is night an appropriate symbol to convey Wiesel's concentration camp experience?
It represents suffering, man's inhumanity to man, and Elie's loss of faith because night is dark, mysterious, and unknown. Night also represents evil and inhumanity.
List at least three scenarios that exhibit self-preservation versus family commitment
Rabbi Eliahou and his son
father and son on the train that fought for bread
Elie's thoughts about his father during certain parts of the memoir
"Every man for himself" menality of the concentration camps
List two actions in the book that exemplify dignity in the face of inhuman cruelty.
Juliek dies while playing Beethoven on his violin
The young boy who is later hanged refuses a blind fold and shouts, "Long live liberty! A curse upon Germany!"
What are the characteristics of an Epic?
The first artistic and literary manifestation of the Italian Renaissance appeared in:
that the planets revolve around the sun, and that the earth is not a motionless body about which everything else in the universe moves; that the earth is the center of the universe
The Crusades have been called "historys most successful failures." Which statement best explains this expression?
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