The On An Asphalt Baseball Field Essay

2428 Words Sep 3rd, 2016 10 Pages
On an asphalt baseball field in Brooklyn, two teams from local Yeshivah schools meet. At first, it just seems like a baseball game between two Jewish high school teams. But the game quickly turns into a holy war when the caftan and ear lock wearing Hasidic team begins to taunt and bully the less conservative “hell-bound sinners” on the other team. Hate boils as Danny Saunders, the leader of the Hasidic team, purposely hits a pitch right back at the pitcher, crushing his glasses and landing him in the hospital for a week. This is how Chaim Potok 's book The Chosen begins. It would seem that there would be no way the batter, Danny Saunders, and the pitcher, Reuven Malter, could be friends. But Potok uses their friendship to deeply explore differences between these two Orthodox Jews who must cope with similar difficulties of finding a balanced, meaningful life in Holocaust era America. After Danny and Reuven overcome their initial enmity, they quickly become close friends. They are described as being “similar enough to become best friends, yet different enough to change each other 's view of the world”(sparknotes). They are drawn to each other by their mutual intelligence, and Reuven 's honest and out-going personality is a needed complement to Danny 's quiet and brooding spirit. Early on in their friendship Danny reveals his dissatisfaction with his Hasidic faith. He dreads the day when he will have to take his father 's place as the tzaddik of their community, and must…

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