Through life with events
One can move through life with events that can change them and their views. In the Holocaust, the believers in the Jewish religion were harmed. The victims went through a journey that they will never forget and will taunt them until their death. In the book Night by Elie Wiesel, he drastically shows how his life has changed after surviving the Holocaust and changing his relationship with his father, his loss of faith in God, and the dehumanization he went through.
Throughout the book Night, Elie faces many hardships and decisions that needs to be made. In a way, he changed his personality and view on his father because their relationship grew closer and became stronger throughout the Holocaust. At the beginning of the book, Elie described his father as a community leader and was involved in the citizens lives. According to Elie, his father was more involved in the community rather than his family’s beliefs when he states, “My father was a cultured man, rather unsentimental. He rarely displayed his feelings, not even within his family” (Wiesel 4). This is significant because his father was more invested in the town rather than his family. When the Jews were being transported to the camps, Elie wanted to stay with his father and his family. Once the Jewish people arrived at the first camp, Elie and his father were separated from his mother and sisters. During the Holocaust, Elie and his father grew closer, and their relationship got stronger because Elie had to take care of his father. His father was not as young and energetic as Elie was, so he took care of him. His father also could not always do the tasks that were asked of him and Elie had to pick up his slack. Elie willingly took care of his father and never left him behind. In the camps, his father did not want to be separated from Elie, and they came inseparable in some circumstances. As his father was getting weaker and weaker, he died in his sleep and Elie did not learn this information until the morning. When Elie found out, he exclaims, “I did not weep, and it pained me that I could not weep” (Wiesel 112). This had a major impact on his life because his father was the only family he had left, and the only friend he had left. During this time, Elie’s emotions were all over the place and he was upset and states, “I shall not describe my life during that period. It no longer mattered. Since my father’s death, nothing mattered to me anymore” (Wiesel 113). This altered his life because nothing in the world mattered more to him than his father, and he just lost him. It is as if the roles reversed because instead of Elie’s father taking care of him, Elie was taking care of his father. In the book, Elie shows how his relationship with his father changes drastically for the better.
In the book, another instance of change is shown when Elie loses his faith in God. The citizens in the town of Sighet, including Elie, were all very strong believers in their religion and their God. The Wiesel family is a very religious family and according to Elie, he wanted to study and learn more about Judaism. When Elie was in Sighet, he was talking to his father and states, “One day when I asked my father to find me a master who could guide me in my studies of Kabbalah” (Wiesel 4). His father did not approve of this because he did not want him to study this part of the religion. The Jews who were being transported to the camps, including Elie and his father, believed in their God and would pray to him and worship him. When all the horrible and horrendous events started to happen to the Jewish people during the Holocaust, many of them lose faith in their religion. There were many thoughts and questions being asked by Elie, and he was so upset one day he exclaims, “What are You, my God? I thought angrily” (Wiesel 66). He was upset and furious with God because he was not helping the Jews live through the pain and suffering that they went through. This is a major change in Elie’s life because he was a very strong and firm believer in his God, but then he started to lose his faith when his God was nowhere to be found to help save the Jews and their religion.
The camps made Elie lose part of himself, and he never recovered from it. Elie experienced dehumanization through horrid events throughout his time in the camps, and it has altered his life. When Elie arrived at the camp, he was stripped of his name and got a new one that he could not choose or change. His identity was taken away from him and he became a new person and states “tattooed numbers on our left arms. I became A-7713. From then on, I had no other name” (Wiesel 42). The prisoners in the camp were treated like animals, because they had a tattoo with a number on their arm which was their new name and whenever the Nazis wanted anything, they were forced to do it. The Jews felt incompetent and they thought less of themselves because their name and identity was taken away. In another camp, Elie had a pair of shoes and he loved them because it was all he had left from his home in Sighet. A boy asked him for his shoes, which made him furious, and he exclaims, “I refused to give him my shoes. They were all I had left” (Wiesel 48). It is as if everything he wanted and needed was taken away from him because of the religion he practiced. His identity was taken away, piece by piece, until he barely remembered who he was and his values and beliefs.
In the book, Elie changed drastically, and sometimes for the better. There were many instances which affected his life and had a major impact on him. Even with all these changes and obstacles, he learned about himself and his traits. In the book Night by Elie Wiesel, he drastically shows how his life has changed after surviving the Holocaust and changing his relationship with his father, his loss of faith in God, and the dehumanization he went through. After surviving all of these events which have drastically and traumatically changed him, he accomplished an achievement, surviving the Holocaust.