Symbols In Night By Elie Wiesel

1059 Words 4 Pages
To survive means to continue to live, despite difficult situations. Survival, however, does not necessarily mean to live a high quality life. Night, a memoir, is written in first person by Elie Wiesel describing his memories of the Holocaust. Wiesel is separated from all his family, with the exception of his father, Shlomo and forced to grow up in concentration camps. Horrid events happen to Wiesel, events that mold him into the person he is: a survivor of the Holocaust. Wiesel is forced to give up his faith, solidarity and humanity in order to survive which is conveyed by foreshadowing, symbolism, and conflict.
Foreshadowing is an indication, or warning of a future event, not yet revealed. Wiesel has hallucinations of a fire saying,”Look!
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Wiesel titles his memoir Night, something intriguing that requires one to think hard, using logic and knowledge to understand why. The word Night brings about the idea of darkness, death, the feeling of being alone. Solidarity is being united with others. In Night, Wiesel eventually starts to stand on his own and break apart from the other jews and even his father. One time, Wiesel gave his father soup and a man scolded him saying, “stop giving your ration of bread and soup to your old father. You cannot help him anymore. And you are hurting yourself. In fact, you should be getting his rations” (). The man argued to Wiesel that to survive one had to care only for themselves and that the older people who are dying should give up all together, so the strong and better could live. The idea seems extremely unethical and morally wrong, but when faced with life or death Wiesel ashamedly aggrees remarking to himself, ”He was right, I thought deep down, not daring to admit it to myself. Too late to save your old father … You could have two rations of bread, two rations of soup”(). Wiesel has compromised his bond between him and his father, if only to increase his chance of surviving, possibly at the expense of his father’s survival. Wiesel has gotten to the point where an extra serving of soup is worth more than human life to Wiesel. If one doesn’t have faith or unity with others, how long until the break and loose all …show more content…
Death would have to be among the biggest types of conflict. Upon realizing his father was dead Wiesel remarks with an eerily calm, detached tone, "I did not weep, and it pained me that I could not weep. But I had no more tears. And, in the depths of my being, in the recesses of my weakened conscience, could I have searched it, I might perhaps have found something like- free at last" (112).Humanity is defined by having emotions, compassion, and the ability to act on emotions, like crying, getting angry, etcetera. Wiesel’s father has died and Wiesel can not even shed a tear, humanity is clearly lost. Without background information people may reason that Wiesel did not have a close relationship with his father and did not lose much. However, having read Night readers know that Wiesel’s father was Wiesel’s motivation to pressed on and survive, yet, the death of Wiesel 's father was the last straw and the effects of the Holocaust took over Wiesel’s humanity, leaving the debris of a numb to feelings, shell of a person. Wiesel describes the next days after his father 's death by saying,” I spent my days in total idleness. With only one desire: to eat. I no longer thought of my father, or my mother. From time to time, I would dream. But only about soup, an extra ration of soup.” ( 113). At this point in time, Wiesel has lost all human

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