Schindler's List | Study Guide

Thomas Keneally

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Course Hero. "Schindler's List Study Guide." Course Hero. 11 May 2017. Web. 18 July 2018. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Schindlers-List/>.

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Course Hero. "Schindler's List Study Guide." May 11, 2017. Accessed July 18, 2018. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Schindlers-List/.

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Course Hero, "Schindler's List Study Guide," May 11, 2017, accessed July 18, 2018, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Schindlers-List/.

Schindler's List | Chapter 13 | Summary

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Summary

In the summer of 1942 the authorities issue new identification cards to the residents of the Cracow ghetto. Those who are engaged in "essential work" are given a card bearing a blue sticker, or Blauschein. Henry Rosner's young son, Olek, is smuggled out of the ghetto by some sympathetic Germans who have foreknowledge of coming events. Despite his job as tutor to OD Chief Spira's children, Poldek Pfefferberg is issued a card without a blue sticker.

The police separate the ghetto residents into two groups: those with blue stickers and those without. Those without the sticker are taken to the railway station. Posing as a Judenrat officer, Pfefferberg escapes to the Labor Office, where the blue stickers are issued. Pfefferberg claims he is a metal polisher, not a high school teacher, and a sympathetic official saves him and gives him the Blauschein.

Analysis

It is becoming increasingly difficult for residents of the Cracow ghetto to hold on to the hope that their safety is ensured within the ghetto. In the summer of 1942 it becomes clear to the residents that the ghetto, which had at first seemed like a place of refuge and safety, is not the permanent home to live in they thought it would be.

The ghetto is no longer a space in which to carry on the normal business of daily life. Ghetto residents have lost their right to practice the profession of their choice. Henry Rosner, now unable to work as a professional musician, finds a job at the air force base. Even though this is a professional setback, Rosner is lucky to have such a job. It entitles him to the Blauschein, which means he is useful to the regime and therefore permitted to continue living and working. Those without the Blauschein are sent away to an uncertain—but no doubt sinister—fate.

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