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The Holocaust through Speak You Also - Essay Example

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It is not an easy task to teach a person about the entire Holocaust through a single book. No one book can truly describe the magnitude of what happened. The book needs to tell a strong, poignant story of what happened, and be interesting enough to hold their attention, and make them want to learn more…
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The Holocaust through Speak You Also
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Download file to see previous pages It is a startling tale of one boy's survival in Auschwitz, the most notorious death camp the Nazi's created. Steinberg shares his story in just such a way that you can truly feel his desperate need for survival.
To choose a single book about the Holocaust, it needs to be a story that does not over-reach what the person will be capable of reading. Because the Holocaust was such a terrible human tragedy, it is of great importance that the book not try and share too much of what happened, but rather limits itself to the story of a few people, or only one. It must also, however, have a human note, one that allows the reader to connect with the main character. By connecting with someone who has been through such a tragedy, the reader will feel a greater desire to understand and be aware of the events that transpired, and not just let it go without trying to learn more, and share with other.
In Speak You Also, we are allowed to travel with the author through his memories of what it was like to be a young boy trying to survive in a concentration camp. And not just any camp, Auschwitz, where some of the greatest atrocities ever committed against human beings happened. He tells his story with no whitewashing, allowing the reader to see the desperation in his actions, and his willingness to do anything, even hurt others to survive.
By choosing a book that does not limit its...
g an imperfect character makes the camp seem just that much more inhumane, because no matter how horrible a person, who deserves to be sent to a death camp, simply because they are the wrong religion
Steinberg perfectly illustrates this need for remembering in his book, but he goes further than merely suggesting the Holocaust was horrible, he asks readers to look at why his being desperate to survive is sometimes seen as wrong. Known best for being "Henri," a young boy who worked beside the famous Primo Levi in the laboratory at Auschwitz, he admits he would have done anything to survive, including hurting others. It is a poignant moment when he realizes (both in the book and in life) that his lack of attachment to family and friends may have been what helped to keep him alive.
Peter Steinberg could have easily created a book of hate. To lose everything, family, friends, and to almost lose life, is enough to bitter anyone. But he instead, encourages in his book forgiveness, and understanding. "I have no gift for hatred. I know what it's like to be hated I concluded that it would be profoundly degrading to play that same game and perpetuate the cycle" (174). Instead, of hate, he teaches remembrance, and respect for the lessons of diversity that the Holocaust taught.
While this book is an excellent introduction to the Holocaust, it is not perfect. There are several detailed areas on which this book does not touch. One of the books greatest strengths, the lack of emotion and family connection, is also one of its greatest weaknesses. It is in the ghettos of Warsaw, and in the transportation and loss of family members that the depth of emotion and pain caused by the Holocaust and Adolf Hitler truly come to light. Because Steinberg did not have to see his family ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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