Schindler's List | Study Guide

Thomas Keneally

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Schindler's List | Chapter 25 | Summary



Schindler works to deliver rescue money brought by Sedlacek to prisoners inside Płaszów. Some are reluctant to accept the money, believing it to be a setup. Schindler doesn't investigate whether the money is spent on food or on weapons and passes for the underground resistance, nor does he take a personal cut. In fact, he continually spends large sums of his own money in various efforts to aid Jewish prisoners.


Schindler's participation in the black market has given him access to large amounts of untraceable cash, which he now uses to assist Jews. His reputation as a big spender is known not only to Jews, but also to SS officials. Their love of money sometimes overcomes their hatred of Jews, as certain Nazi officials are willing to pardon a Jewish life in exchange for some of Schindler's cash.

It would be easy for Schindler to justify using Sedlacek's rescue cash to finance his own personal efforts to help Jews, but he ensures that all the money goes directly to Jewish prisoners to do with as they will. In this way Schindler demonstrates a high degree of moral integrity with regard to money. He also manages to avoid taking a paternalistic stance toward the Jewish inmates, instead allowing them the autonomy to decide how the rescue money might best be spent. The opportunistic moral ambiguity that initially characterized his efforts to help Jews while helping himself is replaced instead by altruism for them.

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