Analysis Of Tadeusz Borowski's This Way To The Gas

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Tadeusz Borowski’s This Way to the Gas, Ladies and Gentlemen is undoubtedly one of the most captivating and fascinating pieces of Holocaust literature. As a privileged prisoner at Auschwitz, Borowski offers a unique perspective of life inside the camp. Assuming the role of a “kapo”, Borowski describes a first hand account of the atrocities committed by the Nazis; he details the treatment of many different prisoners. Though he is a privileged prisoner, Borowski does not facilitate the atrocities committed by his captors. It is clear, Kapo Tadeusz absolves himself from the murderous functions of the Nazis in order to stay alive, both by his dissociation from the atrocities and his exploitation of the system. While many “kapos” or prisoner-leaders were indicted by the allies for the role in enabling the crimes committed at concentration camps, Borowski demonstrates early in his writing that the profound difference between him and those who did commit the crimes. He puts it quite plainly in “A Day At Harmenz” telling a prisoner under his command, “There won’t be any selection. Understand?” (Borowski 58). While other Kapos subjugate their prisoners to verbal abuse and beating, Borowski acts in a way that is almost impartial, showing no hostility toward his prisoners, but doing what he is charged to do in order to survive. It is evident through…show more content…
As a privileged prisoner at Auschwitz, Borowski is able to present an account of the atrocities committed by the Nazis. While he assumes the role of a “kapo”, Borowski does not facilitate the crimes committed by his captors. Instead, Borowski absolves himself from the murderous functions of the Nazis in order to stay alive, both by his dissociation from the atrocities and his exploitation of the system. These objectively recorded actions make This Way to the Gas, Ladies and Gentlemen an intriguing and riveting
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