Gentleman's Agreement Sparknotes

610 Words3 Pages

The film “Gentleman’s Agreement” portrays Jews as second class citizens during a time period in America where bigotry is prevalent and the harsh discrimination against Jews has lessened their own pride and dignity while no one stands up for them. A surprising theme illustrated throughout the film was how the Jews themselves had a lack of respect or pride for themselves, such as when Professor Fred Lieberman wondered, “why the Jews among them still go on calling themselves Jews”. This passage is one of many showing how the Jews in this film have been mentally beaten down through hatred and racism, leaving many with less pride and dignity. Another good example of this is when Phil tells his Jewish friend Dave Goldberg that he’s pretending to be a Jew for his paper and Dave responds “Why, you crazy fool!”. Dave couldn’t understand why someone would want to pretend to be a Jew and expresses concern as someone unfamiliar to this type of abuse won’t be able to handle it, telling Phil he’s taking in a lifetime full of hatred in a condensed eight weeks. The most appalling example is when Phil’s secretary admits to calling herself derogatory Jewish terms whenever she does something wrong. This …show more content…

In fact, as Phil’s secretary explained that she couldn’t get a job with her Jewish name, so, she says “one day I wrote the same firm two letters”, and with her Jewish name she was told there were no opening and she got the job with her gentile name. This shows how low Jews were forced to stoop to just get a job, as they practically had to strike any association they had with Judaism. Phil was also kicked out of the hotel, as they claimed to be fully booked only after he hinted that he may be Jewish while Ms. Lacey wouldn’t let Dave live in her house, because the town would ostracize him and not sell him groceries because he’s

Open Document