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The Book Thief: Fact vs. Fiction

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by

Jiaxin Li

on 12 November 2013

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Transcript of The Book Thief: Fact vs. Fiction

Air Raids
During World War II, air raids were very common around Germany as the Allies would drop bombs across the country as it was weakening and overpowering. This was a huge part in invasion and many citizens lost their homes and their lives during the air raids.
The Book Thief: Fact vs. Fiction
Fictional Main Characters
(Death)
Since the story is told by a narrator called Death and not by a real historical figure,
The Book Thief is obviously fictional. He does not represent the "death of people" rather he has good intentions when people die. However, he does explain factual events that actually occurred during World War II and the Holocaust.
Setting
Fact
:
The Book Thief
takes place near Munich, Germany (a real city) on route to the Dachau Concentration Camp (a real concentration camp) during World War II and the Holocaust from 1939 to 1942.
Fiction
:
The Book Thief
takes place in a fictional town called Molching, which is close to Munich, Germany and the Dachua Concentration Camps.
Hitler Youth
Fact
: The Hitler Youth was a program established by the Nazi Party to educate and train German youth between the ages of 10 and 18 with Nazi values. It was mandatory for children in this age range to participate.
Fiction
: Although Liesel was against the Nazi Party, she was part of the Hitler Youth. Rudy, another fictional character, was a very athletic member of the Hitler Youth.
Holocaust
Fact
: The Holocaust was an event during World War II when millions of Jews were put into concentration camps by the Nazis and nearly two-thirds of them were killed. To avoid the Nazis, Jews often hid in someone else's house without notice.
Fiction
: Although this was based on a real event, the story of Max hiding in the Hubbermann's basement was a fictional occurrence.
Introduction
The Book Thief
is a novel written by Markus Zusak that tells a story about a girl named Liesel Meminger and her life in Molching, Germany during World War II and the Holocaust. This novel uses factual elements as a historically correct foundation while using fictional elements to create the storyline.
Book Burning
Fact
: Book burning was a common Nazi act performed during World War II to burn books against the Nazi ideology. The Nazis wanted to keep Jews and other minorities inferior.
Fiction
: The event at which Liesel steals a book without being punished is fictional since all were threatened by officials during the book burning. Also "The Shoulder Shrug" was not a real book.
Fictional Main Characters (Liesel)
Liesel Meminger is a fictional German girl, which allows the author to expand upon his character rather than follow a historical context. In addition to the understanding of the power of words throughout the novel, Liesel allows the audience to join her on her journey during the Holocaust while learning about factual events that occurred, such as the air raids and book burning.
By: Jiaxin Li
Full transcript