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Unformatted text preview: I believe that in order to understand what really happened during the Holocaust, students must read personal accounts from actual survivors. Numerous victims have documented horrific stories from their past, in what we now see as a new genre of literature in itself. These memoirs show human courage and strength, the will to survive, and determination. By reading and taking in their words of hope, we can get a better understanding of the past. For my comparison paper on Holocaust victims, I decided to compare and contrast two books, each documenting the life of a Jewish survivor. I am using the following criteria for my comparison: gender and age, country of origin, early life, when they were captured (if so), whether they hid or were living in a concentration camp, being alone or with members of their family, and the different methods of coping. The first book that I chose was Survival in Auschwitz by Primo Levi. He was a young Italian chemist who suffered for ten months while living in Auschwitz. The second book that I chose was written by Edith Hahn Beer, The Nazi Officer’s Wife: How one Jewish Woman Survived the Holocaust . Unlike Levi, Beer was a successful law student who, in order to survive, married a Nazi officer as a cover. “No one must leave here and so carry to the world, together with the sign impressed on his skin, the evil tidings of what man’s presumption made of man in Auschwitz.” 1 This quote by Primo Levi gives me a sudden chill every time I read it. We can never really know what happened at Auschwitz, the infamous death camp located in Poland. After doing some research on the early life of Primo Levi, I have learned that he was born in the year 1919 in Turin, a major industrial city located in Northern Italy. His family consisted of his parents, Cesare and Ester Levi, and his younger sister Anna Maria. Although he was bullied during his younger years at school, he later enrolled at the University of Turin to study chemistry. He graduated with excellent marks, but was unable to find a suitable job due to the racial laws. 2 Primo Levi starts off his memoir by stating when he was captured by the Fascist...
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This note was uploaded on 04/30/2008 for the course HIST 328 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '07 term at Rhode Island.
- Fall '07
- The Holocaust