Anth 146 Notes 11.10

Anth 146 Notes 11.10 - Holocaust basic argument Nazis...

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Holocaust basic argument: Nazis, through their deathcamps, they had Godlike complexes Comes back to the tree of life The rituals of sacrifice in effect express this control over life and death Primo-Levi book - themes of sacrifice here as well Epigram in the book - revising prayer because of the halocaust - in view of what happened in the concentration camps The central prayer of Judaism: The lord is ONE (monotheistic), love God with all your heart, teach God, be constantly reminded of God Devout Jews will say the prayer when wake up, go to bed Excluding dualism, excluding polytheism This prayer is the common prayer throughout Judaism Primo-Levi revises the prayer You who lives safe in your warm houses, find hot food and friendly faces, consider if this is a man: who works in the mud, who does not know peace, who fights for a scrap of bread, who dies because of a yes or no (arbitrary selection in concentration camps), and then consider if this is a woman: without hair, without names, with no more strength to remember, her eyes empty and her womb cold, like a frog in winter. Meditate that this came out, carve these words in your hearts, going to bed, rising, repeat them to your children, or may your house fall apart, may illness impede you, may your children turn their faces from you Title of the book is really "Is this a human being?" - changed to Survival in Aushvitz to sell more books Revision makes them bear witness to the atrocity The people who are killed can't bear witness, so it is important that you do Pg 9 - his good fortune to be deported to Aushvitz in 1944 - the war would be over that year, nobody lasts long Why he wrote the book: is has not been written to formulate accusations, it is a quiet study of the human mind- he wants to try to understand and describe Many people, many nations can find themselves holding more or less willingly that every stranger is an enemy For the most part this conviction lies deep down like an infection - portrays itself in only random acts, not reasonable - but when it does come about, when the unspoken dogma becomes the major premise in a syllogism, then at the end of the chain there is the logger (the logger is the camp) So long as the conception consists, this threatens us - the camps should be an alarm signal to us Crucial thesis - every stranger is an enemy Relates to Descartes - you only know yourself, only know that you exist, everything else is out there for your usage (instrumentalism)
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