The True Power Of Dehumanization In Night By Elie Wiesel

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In the world today everyone believes in treating each other as equal as possible, but the

memoir Night by Elie Wiesel portrays a time where this was not the case. The true power of

dehumanization is displayed throughout the book. The story follows Elie’s journey as a Jew

during the Holocaust, from his hometown of Sighet, Transylvania up to his liberation from a

concentration camp in Buchenwald, Germany. Although Elie faced some of the worst the world

has to offer; starvation, loneliness, and losing his family, perhaps what had the strongest impact

on his life was the dehumanization he endured from the Germans. Contrary to many beliefs of

dehumanization only having a minor impact on an individual, Elie Wiesel demonstrates the truth
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Throughout the Holocaust,

the prisoners faced immense starvation, thirst, and lack of medical treatment. The insufficiency

of human essentials forced a majority of the Jews into a state of complete desperation.

IN THE WAGON where the bread had landed, a battle had ensued. Men were hurling

themselves against each other trampling, tearing, at and mauling each other. Beasts

vitality possessed them, sharpening their teeth and nails (Wiesel 101).

Elie compared men to beasts and how beasts are brutal monsters that will unhesitantly kill one

another to survive. The moment that a single piece of bread fell to the floor a war began, but

instead of two sides the war was every man for himself. They had no care in the world for the

other men around them and even sacrificed their own bodies and in some cases their own lives

for something as small as a piece of bread. The cause was none other than the dehumanization

the Hitler Party expressed on the Jews. The Nazis made them feel like animals and sometimes

even objects, which made the Jewish people treat each other in the same way. Perhaps
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Where is God’s mercy? Where’s God? How

can I believe, how can anyone believe in this God of Mercy? (Wiesel 76)

Akiba loses his faith in God while simultaneously deciding to give up on life.The

dehumanization that Akiba experienced while in the camp embedded the ideal that he was no

more than a creature of flesh and bone. Once he came to this realization the other prisoners

realized the same. Akiba was not alone when it came to being puzzled with God’s mysterious

ways. Many of the Jews believed that it was God’s fault that they were in the situation they were

in. When Akiba spoke about suffering hell in his soul and flesh, he felt that all his beliefs were

contradicted by the Germans. He began to lose faith in God because of what the SS repetitively

forced into his mind, including the fact that God was evil because he was simply watching them

suffer and taking no action to be their savior. The forceful acts of dehumanization the Jewish

were treated with altered their views on even God. Therefore if the Germans did not dehumanize

the Jews as firmly as they did, perhaps not as many of the them would have lost faith in their

religion in a time of such great

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