Blindness To Reality In Elie Wiesel's Night

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In the novel Night, by Elie Wiesel, the theme of blindness to reality is explored through the actions and dialogue of the people of Sighet, a town located in Northwestern Romania, prior to and during German occupation during the second world war. Prior to the Germans arriving, the people of Sighet express disbelief that Germans would occupy such an out of the way town, or bother with them at all. The population refuses to believe the horrors and atrocities they have heard of taking place in other communities within Nazi-occupied territory, and, when the Nazis finally do arrive, the people of Sighet remain optimistic. Wiesel describes the Germans and their steel helmets with the death’s head emblem, just before writing about the positive nature the Nazis displayed in their dealings with the local community. Here we see that despite his misgivings and fears, and the blatant physical display of the sinister…show more content…
By being unwilling to stand up for their rights, or for the rights of others, the people of Sighet gave the Germans free reign, and set a precedent that they would simply take whatever the Germans did to them, rather than fighting back. And so it was that as the Jewish community was stripped of their rights more and more each day, forced into ghettos and having to give up their material possessions, still they did not rebel against the oppressive Germans. Finally, like the foreign Jews before them, the Jews were expelled from the town of Sighet and were taken to concentration camps or put to death. Through this, it is seen that the attitude of the Jews of Sighet is much the same as the attitude of an animal burying its head in the sand to hide itself from danger, and it is this attitude that led to the destruction of everything that they hold
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