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Night Allusions

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by

Denny Nguyen

on 9 May 2014

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Transcript of Night Allusions

Night Allusions
Reference to Babylon
"Here came the Rabbi, his back bent, his face shaved, his pack on his back. His mere presence among the deportees added a touch of unreality to the scene. It was like a passage from some historical novel about the captivity of Babylon or the Spanish inquisition."
Reference to Spanish Inquisition
Reference to Palestine
Reference to the Angel of Death
"My heart was bursting. The moment had come. I was face to face with the angel of death."
Reference to Job
"How I sympathized with Job I did not deny the existence of God, but i doubted His Absolute Justice."
"At the time it was still possible to obtain emigration permits to Palestine"
Palenstine at the time had allowed the Jewish community to imigrate within their boarders during WW2. Elie Wisel wanted to move to Palenstine during the time but regulations stated that they would not take German currency or goods so his father refused Elie's pleas as he did not want to start from nothing in such a far away place.
The significance of this Allusion was that Elie would have never went to the concentration camps had his dad listened to him and moved to Palestine.
The correlation between Babylon and Night was that in both scenarios the Jews were persecuted and exiled from their lands for being seen as a threat. They both lost their homes and belongings.
During the Babylon captivity, the Babylonians destroyed the Temple that Solomon had built, and took many of the richer, more aristocratic Jews prisoner, both men and women, and their children, and took them away to Babylon where they could keep an eye on them.
Jews were subjected to violent attacks and isolated in ghettos. Many were killed. Jews were banished a few years later when King Ferdinand II issued the Alhambra Decree in 1492. Many Jews converted to Catholicism. This is similar to
Night
because the Jews were also subject to the same treatment, they were forced to work or be killed and were separated from their homes and put into ghettos. Also in both cases, they were tortured and killed with the goal of wiping out their culture.
Job has his faith constantly tested by Satan. Job struggles to understand evil, pain, and suffering with the existence of God and God's promises to the Jews. Job understands that the suffering he is experiencing has been caused by nothing he has done in his life. He does not understand why God would let him suffer so. Job questions God in the bible.
The reference between Job and
Night
is that Elie does the same. He has trouble understanding God's existence and how God could allow such cruelties like the concentration camps, the crematories, and just in general the inhumane conditions the people were put in during WW2. Elie waits to hear from God just as Job had done. He chooses to be silent because he knows there is no answer for him, and so loses faith in God but still believes in him, hence the quote "..but i doubted His absolute justice."
The angel of death that Elie refers to is an SS officer named Josef Mengele. He was known for selection of victims to be killed in the gas chambers and for performing unscientific and deadly human experiments. The connection that is made when Elie comes face to face with him is that he is a messenger of death and he holds Elie's life in his hand.
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