While studying Nazi war criminals in the World War II, Hannah Arendt discovered that Eichmann, who was sentenced to death for devising egregious methods for massive Jews execution, was in fact a passive receptor of authoritative orders from the Nazi regime. She proclaimed the concept of “banality of evil”, noting that “There are no dangerous thoughts; thinking in itself is dangerous.” Such fickle and even potentially dangerous orientation of humanity is well demonstrated in An Essay on Man, where Alexander Pope illustrates the constantly errant and confused nature of human. Similarly, in Miguel Cervantes’s Don Quixote, the foolish protagonist Don Quixote shows how men may often fail to notice the absurdity and errors in certain actions. Here, exploration of the similarities and differences between two pieces and search for relevant contemporary examples may reveal how two works effectively characterize the faults and flaws that humans fail to learn from and constantly commit.
In An Essay on Man, Alexander Pope characterizes men as inherently bemused beings who will continuously commit numerous errors. For one, by suggesting that men are “placed on this isthmus of middle state” (3), he illustrates how men were involuntarily thrust between divine and beastly characters. Failing to belong in neither end of the spectrum, men have innately indistinct identity which keeps them in confusion. Pope also elaborates on how men cannot properly reason without errors and deviations.
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Conscience is the feeling inside one 's self that alerts them that something is wrong. This can sometimes be overpowered by stronger external forces such as a powerful authority figure, surrounding circumstances, or the belief that what they did was correct. Through, Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil, Hannah Arendt argues that for the first time the world has encountered a different kind of criminal- - one that blindly followed orders from superiors and was made to believe the anti-Semitic ideology, although it could have been any ideology. Similarly, in her work, A Human Being Died That Night, Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela claims that the actions of ordinary citizens could be influenced by surrounding practices and drive people
Then by the same sign when a man kills ten others, his crime will be ten times greater and should be punished by death ten times…. Crime such as attacking another country is applauded as a righteous act, can this be said to be knowing the difference between righteousness and unrighteousness? (20)” this quote originated from Judy Grahn’s book, “blood, bread, and roses” and it is notable to mention for its truthfulness that people place blame to everything else unless notably acceptable in society. When it came down to it Ehrenreich had no qualm to point out humanities flaws and even mentions that it shows humans true nature. Ehrenreich brings a good thought to the table, “Which are we: beasts because we make war, or angels because we so often seek to make it into something
In the wake of Adolf Eichmann’s prosecution for commanding the slaying of over 1 million Jews, Psychologist Stanley Milgram called the role of authority into question. What would propel such evil acts from a seemingly normal man? In spite of what top psychologists assumed the outcome would be, the results were astounding. Despite the deep rooted convictions of the subjects opposed to causing physical harm to others, obedience to authority overcame the majority of the time (The Perils of Obedience by Stanley Milgram) According to Milgram in his famous writing, The Perils of Obedience, “Even Eichmann was sickened when he toured the concentration camps, but had only to sit at a desk and shuffle papers.”
The human condition is a very malleable idea that is constantly changing due to the current state of mankind. In the memoir Night by Elie Wiesel, the concept of the human condition is displayed in the worst sense of the concept, during the Holocaust of WWII. During this time, multiple groups of people, most notably European Jews, were persecuted against and sent to horrible hard labor and killing centers such as Auschwitz. In this memoir, Wiesel uses complex figurative language such as similes and metaphors to display the theme that a person’s state as a human, both at a physical and emotional level, can be altered to extreme lengths, and even taken away from them, under the most extreme conditions.
Choose a complex and important character in a novel or a play of recognized literary merit who might on the basis of the character’s actions alone be considered evil or immoral. In a well-organized essay, explain both how and why the full presentation of the character in the work makes us react more sympathetically than we otherwise might. Avoid plot summary. I. Introduction: A. In Mary Shelly’s novel, Frankenstein, the reader is tasked with answering the central question of who is the truest evil.
In which millions of Jews were innocently killed and persecuted because of their religion. As a student who is familiar with the years of the holocaust that will forever live in infamy, Wiesel’s memoir has undoubtedly changed my perspective. Throughout the text, I have been emotionally touched by the topics of dehumanization, the young life of Elie Wiesel, and gained a better understanding of the Holocaust. With how dehumanization was portrayed through words, pondering my mind the most.
Vengeance has been an ongoing problem for many centuries. In the long run, with the new generation, they have been following the same pattern to get revenge, without knowing the reasons why. If no one is willing to stop and think it over, to evaluate if it’s worth the risk, then the act of vengeance will be ongoing at the cost of many lives. Many people do not realize that having to avenge the death of a loved one will take so much time and patience in their lives. In the short story, “An Act of Vengeance,” by Isabel Allende, the issue involves a young girl who gets raped by Tadeo Cespedes, whom also killed her father on the same day.
It’s difficult to imagine the way humans brutally humiliate other humans based on their faith, looks, or mentality but somehow it happens. On the novel “Night” by Elie Wiesel, he gives the reader a tour of World War Two through his own eyes , from the start of the ghettos all the way through the liberation of the prisoners of the concentration camps. This book has several themes that develop throughout its pages. There are three themes that outstand from all the rest, these themes are brutality, humiliation, and faith. They’re the three that give sense to the reading.
This book shows how the Holocaust should be taught and not be forgotten, due to it being a prime example of human impureness. Humans learn off trial and error, how the Jewish population was affected, decrease in moral, and the unsettled tension are prime examples of such mistakes. The Jewish population was in jeopardy, therefore other races in the world are at risk of genocide as well and must take this event as a warning of what could happen. In the Auschwitz concentration camp, there was a room filled with shoes.
The Holocaust was a dreadful and truly awful time period, people were dehumanized, and shamed into losing their faith while they experienced tragic and awful death and pain. One Jewish survivor documents his experiences with death in his memoir, ‘Night’, Elie Wiesel. The novel is filled with his tales of death, dehumanization, and faith throughout the concentration camp, Auschwitz. In Auschwitz, the Jews lost their innocence that they once had. In the novel, Night, Elie, his father, and his fellow Jews lost their innocence through dehumanization, loss of faith, and experience of death and violence.
Andre Dubus, short stories contain a common theme of revenge, morality, and justice. In “Killings” published in 1979, Andre displays the theme of revenge and justice through the development of characters, the title of the story, and the thrill of the suspense. Dubus neglects to take sides with the characters in the “Killings”, which leaves it upon the readers to make assumption whether the killings were justifiable. Dubus has a very unique style of writing, the main characters in “Killings” were given a choice that could’ve led them to a completely different outcome. Dubus keeps the readers on their toes because the opposite usually ends up happening.
Let this essay be a reminder to the world that totalitarian ideologies will bring forth catastrophe just as National Socialism did in Nazi Germany. The memoirs of Rudolf Hoss, Death Dealer, is one of the most detailed accounts of a man who was the Commandant of Auschwitz, and is known as one of the greatest mass murderers in history. In the forward Primo Levi wrote to Death Dealer, he stated that even though this autobiography is filled with evil and has no literary quality, it’s one of the most instructive books ever published because it describes a human life exemplary in its way (Hoss, 3). In this essay, I will argue that Primo Levi thought Death Dealer is one of the most instructive books because it seeks to explain how ordinary men
Wiesel pinpoints the indifference of humans as the real enemy, causing further suffering and lost to those already in peril. Wiesel commenced the speech with an interesting attention getter: a story about a young Jewish from a small town that was at the end of war liberated from Nazi rule by American soldiers. This young boy was in fact himself. The first-hand experience of cruelty gave him credibility in discussing the dangers of indifference; he was a victim himself.
Mankind is both intelligent and capable of making humble choices, however, it is the following choices of the Nazis that prove that much of humanity is deeply flawed and cruel. For example, when Elie first gets to the concentration camp, he is still confused as to where he was and if all that was happening was a dream. The thought of his surroundings being a dream soon turned to reality when, “A truck drew close and unloaded its hold: small children. Babies! Yes, I did see this, with my own eyes… children thrown into the flames.”