The Book Thief - Markus Zusak

If her mother loved her why leave her on someone

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Unformatted text preview: t spell or understand it. When she asked her mother what it meant, she was told that it wasn’t important, that she shouldn’t worry about such things. At one boardinghouse, there was a healthier woman who tried to teach the children to write, using charcoal on the wall. Liesel was tempted to ask her the meaning, but it never eventuated. One day, that woman was taken away for questioning. She didn’t come back. When Liesel arrived in Molching, she had at least some inkling that she was being saved, but that was not a comfort. If her mother loved her, why leave her on someone else’s doorstep? Why? Why? Why? The fact that she knew the answer—if only at the most basic level—seemed beside the point. Her mother was constantly sick and there was never any money to fix her. Liesel knew that. But that didn’t mean she had to accept it. No matter how many times she was told that she was loved, there was no recognition that the proof was in the abandonment. Nothing changed the fact that she was a lost, skinny child in another foreign place, with more foreign people. Alone. The Hubermanns lived in one of the small, boxlike houses on Himmel Street. A few rooms, a kitchen, and a shared outhouse with neighbors. The roof was flat and there was a shallow basement for storage. It was supposedly not a basement of adequate depth. In 1939, this wasn’t a problem. Later, in ’42 and ’43, it was. When air raids started, they always needed to rush down the street to a better shelter. In the beginning, it was the profanity that made an immediate impact. It was so vehement and prolific. Every second word was either Saumensch or Saukerl or Arschloch. For people who aren’t familiar with these words, I should explain. Sau, of course, refers to pigs. In the case of Saumensch, it serves to castigate, berate, or plain humiliate a female. Saukerl (pronounced “saukairl”) is for a male. Arschloch can be translated directly into “asshole.” That word, however, does not differentiate between the sexes. It simply is. “Saumensch, du dreckiges!...
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This note was uploaded on 01/17/2014 for the course ENG 99 taught by Professor Michal during the Winter '13 term at CSU Sacramento.

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