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Between Shades of Gray

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Hope Finley

on 21 September 2012

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Transcript of Between Shades of Gray

LOVE is the daughter of a Lithuanian refugee. In 1941 the nations of Lituania, Latvia, and Estonia disappeared from maps and did not reappear until 1990. As a story seldom told, Ruta wanted to give a voice to the thousands of people who lost their lives during Stalin's hopeful genocide. Ruta Sepetys Have you ever wondered what a Human Life is worth? That morning, my brothers was worth a pocket watch. Characters: Lina Vilkas
Jonas Vilkas
Elena Vilkas
Andrius Arvydas
Mrs. Arvydas
Nikolai Kretzsky In 1941, fifteen-year-old Lina is preparing for art school, first dates, and all that summer has to offer. But one night, the Soviet secret police barge violently into her home, deporting her along with her mother and younger brother. They are being sent to Siberia. Lina's father has been separated from the family and sentenced to death in a prison camp. Life for Lina, her family, and her country will never be the same. Lina relies on her artistic ability to comfort her through the troubling times. She meticulously, although dangerously, records each and every person, place, and event. She hopes that her drawings will somehow get to her father and he will come and rescue them. Throughout the story the reader sees what a strong individual Lina is forced to become. She watches as those around her are torn from their families and tortured. "Freedom isn't appreciated until you lose it." “I shut the bathroom door and caught sight of my face in the mirror.
I had no idea how quickly it was to change, to fade.
If I had, I would have stared at my reflection, memorizing it.
It was the last time I would look into a real mirror for more than a decade.” They were happy to help someone, to succeed at something, even if they weren't to benefit.
We'd been trying to touch the sky from the bottom of the ocean.
I realized that if we boosted one another, maybe we'd get a little closer.” SURVIVAL OPRESSION SADNESS HOPE FREEDOM WHAT IS THIS STORY ABOUT? HISTORICAL CONTEXT (cc) image by nuonsolarteam on Flickr

“...we're dealing with two devils who both want to rule hell.” Stalin drafted lists of those he considered "Anti-Soviet". Those lists consisted of Military personel, doctors, lawyers, teachers, business owners, librarians, priests, and even children. In 1939 Hitler and Stalin signed a pact of Non-Aggression and in 1940 the Baltic countries were annexed into the Soviet Union. The countries of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia dissapeared from maps. These people had done nothing wrong, yet they were all arrested and stuffed into cattle cars. The men seperated from the women. While the men were taken to prison, the women and children were sent to Siberia to hard labor camps. While many lived in fear of the Soviet Secret Police for the many years of their reign on their country, Stalin underestimated their will to live. Many of the corageous people told their stories through art, music, and writings. They buried their works hoping that one day someone will discover them and know the truth. The main character in the book Between Shades of Gray, Lina, documents her journey through her drawings and her letters, and buries them in a jar. "The NKVD's hostilities strengthened my defiance. Why would I give in to people who spit in my face and tormented me eacha and every day? What would I havve left if I gave them my self-respect? I wondered what would happen if we were the only ones left who wouldn't sign." “I looked down at the little pink face in the bundle. A newborn. The child had been alive only minutes but was already considered a criminal by the Soviets.” "Teach Love in an atmosphere of cruelity." “I love Between shades of gray” "Why have you gone to all the pain and trouble of bringing us to Siberia to work and starve to death?" He said, "We don't need your death, we need your pain and suffering." Lina, the main character, records her journey through drawings and writings and buries them in a jar. “...we're dealing with two devils who both want to rule hell.” In 1939, Hitler and Stalin signed a pact of Non- Agression. The countries of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia were annexed into the Soviet Union in 1940. These countries then disappeared from maps completely. Stalin drafted lists of people that he thought were "Anti-Soviet". These lists include Military personel, doctors, lawyers, teachers, librarians, business owners and even children. These people had committed no crime, yet they were all arrested and thrown into cattle cars. The men were seperated from the women. While the men went to prison, the women and children were sent to Siberia to work in hard labor camps. With no risk of pregnacy, Stalin's plan for genocide would be complete. He underestimated the will to live of these people. The Soviet Union reigned over these people for about 50 years. While many suffered they dared not talk about their circumstances in fear of the Soviet Secret Police, a few courageous people buried their stories incorrporated into art, music, or drawings in hope that one day someone would find it and know the truth. Historical Context
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