Elie in Ellens Eyes Essay

This essay has a total of 650 words and 6 pages.

Elie in Ellens Eyes



In Ellen Fine's Book, "Legacy of Night: The Literary universe of Elie Wiesel." She
analyzes Wiesel's book, "Night," as well as his other work. In this essay I will discuss
how Fine's Definition of a witness pertains to Elie Wiesel. "The witness can be defined
as the person who sees or kows by his or her presence and perception; and the one who
testifies in words and deeds" (Fine 2). Fine also talks about bearing witness, "taking
the responsibility for speaking about it" (3). I think Wiesel fits Fine's definition of a
witness. I also think, that since Wiesel made the choice to write books about the
Holocaust, he also fits Fine's role of a witness.

There are two main ways that Wiesel takes on le temoin. Le temoin, translated from
French, means the role of the witness. The role of a witness is that after observing a
phenomenon you to take the responsibility for speaking about it (Fine 3). Wiesel first
made the choice not to be silent. The second is that he wrote books about his experience.
He wrote so humanity would not forget the horror of the Holocaust. By taking the role of
the witness he is helping for history not to repeat itself.

Wiesel brings the heartache and the terror of the Holocaust to life. He uses dialogue and
dynamic characters to turn his experiences into stories. These stories are his way of
excepting the role of a witness. Wiesel is, "an active participant who chooses to give
testimony" (Fine 3).

"Wiesel writes from the perspective of a witness-storyteller," (Fine 2). Wiesel is a
perfect example of Fine's definition of a witness. "One must distinguish therefore
between witnessing an event and bearing witness to it," (Fine 3) through his novels. He
uses his experiences knowledge of the Holocaust, and imagination all mixed together to
warn and inform audiences about the horro of genocide.

Wiesel fits the description of a witness in his book because he was an active
participater. He was there and saw first hand the unspeakable actions that were the
Holocaust. He went through the stories that he writes. "I had not seen myself since the
ghetto. From the depths of the mirror, a corpse gazed back at me. The look in his eyes,
as they stared into mine, has never left me," (Wiesel 109).

In Wiesel's book, "Night," the characters play a big part in telling the story. They are
a big part because in every story you need characters. The characters are what makes a
story, especially in, "Night." Wiesel makes you sympathize with every character in his
book. Each and every characters' personality and outlook on things are different. Some
characters are full of hope where some have already given up. No matter what, how they
feel you are urging them to trudge on and survive.

In, "Night," there are many different types of characters. Some characters are very
religious, some are broken hearted, and some are totally insane. Many prisoners looked to
God for a reason or for an answer. He used each character to bring the story to life. He
used a character called Madame Schachter to show how many people were broken down so
early. She lost her husband and went crazy with her 10 year old son by her side. Each
character made you get more involved in the story. Night is filled with many of Wiesel's
dynamic characters. "In Wiesel's novels there is a general progression from witnessing to
bearing witness. The survivor-protagonist, whose voice has been silenced by nocturnal
flames, struggles to express himself and to recover the faculty of speech" (Fine 3).

"Person who sees or know by his or her presence and perception; and the one who testifies
in words and deeds," (Fine 2). That is a good description of Elie Wiesel, a witness.











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