Although The Chosen focuses equally on both Reuven’s and Danny’s personal and religious development, it is Danny’s story that provides the central conflict of the novel and sets in motion both protagonists’ process of discovery. Danny and Reuven’s similarities—their love of learning, quick minds, and deep Jewish faith—allow them to relate to one another and become friends. At the same time, their differences in family situations, culture, and relationships to the non-Jewish secular world allow them to learn from one another. Throughout the novel, Danny learns restraint and introspection from Reuven. As Reb Saunders points out in the final chapter, Reuven entered Danny’s life when Danny “was ready to rebel.”
Potok first introduces the theme conflict of tradition versus modernity at a baseball game. This baseball game represents a war between the Hasidic and Orthodox Jewish religions. Reuven’s coach refers to this game as a battle, “No heroes in this war… I want live soldiers, not dead heroes… Just keep our side of this war fighting” (Potok 17). In this hostile and unfriendly environment where they first meet, Danny Saunders tells Reuven, “I told my team we’re going to kill you apikorsim this afternoon” (Potok 18). During the final period of the game Danny hits a ball that strikes Reuven in his eye, which sends him to the hospital, for several days.
The second important event in the friendship of Reuven and Danny is when Reuven eats a Shabbat meal with Danny. Reuven goes to the Hasidic synagogue because Reb Saunders wants to meet him. Reuven discovers that Reb never talks to Danny except when they are studying Talmud. Danny says to Reuven “…I told him we were friends” (p. 115). However, Danny says that Reb Saunders needs to approve of his friends, especially if it is not a Hasid.
The theme in Chaim Potok The Chosen is that a father-son relationship is very important. They focus on David and Reuven Malter and also Reb and Danny Saunders relationships with each other. It shows the different ways that Reb and David teach their children how to learn the Talmud. Also, it shows the different ways that a father-son relationship can be like. One is Reb and Danny’s relationship which is strict and they don't talk a lot about other stuff beside religion.
The narrator, Reuven Malter, describes his neighborhood that he’s lived in for 15 years. His neighborhood is heavily populated by the Orthodox Jews that included many Hasidic sects. He goes on to talk about the yeshiva¬ – a Jewish parochial school- in which the male children of the household “studied from eight or nine in the morning to four or five in the evening” (4). Later on, he mentions Danny, another kid in his neighborhood. Danny’s father ran his own yeshiva while Reuven’s dad owned his own.
“Love your neighbor as yourself.” This command, given by Jesus’ in Mark 12:31, tells everybody love others just as much as themselves. David Malter, a very Christ-like character from The Chosen, by Chaim Potok, puts this command into practice. He exemplifies many of Jesus’ most valuable character-traits. Although Mr. Malter does not believe that Jesus is the Messiah, he still follows many of his commands without even knowing it.
Friendship is a wonderful yet confusing thing. This concept is brilliantly displayed in Chaim Potok’s The Chosen. In the book, the main character, Reuven, and Danny Saunders become friends through an interesting turn of events during a baseball game, the short version being that Danny ended up putting Reuven in the hospital with a baseball in the eye. After Reuven gets over some feelings of bitterness towards Danny, the two grow to be great friends. There are many difficulties when it comes to friendship, but the beauty of a good friendship is that good friends can power through them.
Not all of Hitler’s schemes succeeded. Yet surprisingly, many believe so. His intent of world domination and plans such as collecting Jewish artifacts to build a museum of an extinct Jewish race was unsuccessful. So to this day, the Jewish population is large in number. A main reason for this being the significance placed on family and culture within the Jewish community.
Because the author’s long-term thinking and determination helped him conquer the situational challenges he faced, unlike the other Wes Moore whose shortsightedness became his downfall, the purpose of the memoir is to persuade readers to work hard and overcome their obstacles. The other Wes Moore’s shortsightedness, especially regarding money, is what eventually led to his arrest and the end of his free life. One issue that contributed to Wes’s shortsightedness is that he was easily impressionable. Upon seeing another boy on the street, he was captivated by the “headset… [and] gold ring with a small diamond cut into the middle” (57) the boy proudly wore.
Waltz with Bashir is an animated movie that portrays the director’s mission to recall his memories of the massacre that took place in 1982 at the Palestinian refugee camps. This film is a about a person who goes on a quest in order to find about his past. One night at the bar, a friend of Ari Folman tells him about a dream that is related to the time when he was in Lebanon and he is shocked to discover that he doesn’t remember anything about his service in the army when he was only 19 years of age. Thus, at this point, he realizes that he should make a movie related to this and for this he goes to talk to a lot of his old friends who also fought with him in Lebanon. He first goes to Holland to talk to a friend who earns a living by selling falafel.
The words we don't say can speak louder than the words we scream. Silence is a powerful force that has the capability to alter people's lives, and the words we speak have becomes unrecognizable in the eyes of people. Within The Chosen, silence is a main theme that is touched upon throughout the book. Comprehending silence can be strenuous because it is not accustomed to our society, but the silence could also have the opportunity to speak to us. Silence can overcome any words given.
The minor characters in The Chosen are Mr. Savo, Billy, and Mickey, and each play an important role in helping Reuven’s perspectives transform. Mr. Savo is a middle-aged man who was a boxer. He suffered an injury to his eye in a match and ended up in the hospital, evidentially having his eye surgically removed. His conversations with Reuven make him feel more secure in his faith saying he “always likes kids that hold onto their religion”, showing Reuven he can wear his skullcap and pray without feeling judged. Mr. Savo tells stories to Reuven about boxing and his manager who lost faith in him.