Life And Works Of Elie Wiesel English Literature Essay

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Elie Wiesel, a Holocaust survivor has been through many obstacles ever since his childhood. He lost his father by his side and could not do anything about it. He began to lose hope on everything that came his way. But later, he knew hope still existed for him and all that he needed to do was believe. Due to the Holocaust, he has written many books related to this night. He wrote plenty but only a few related to the night of the holocaust. "Of my 40 books, maybe four or five deal with that period because I know that there are no words of it(holocaust), so all I can try to do is communicate the incommunicability of the event" (Wiesel). It was a night that he will always remember because it literally turned his whole life around. Just in one night, thousands of lives were taken.

Eile Weisel was born in the small town of Sighet in Transylvania on September 30, 1928. He lived with his father, Shlomo Wiesel; his mother, Sarah Frig; and his three sisters, Hilda, Beatrice, and younger sister Tzipora. Sholomo encouraged him to learn Modern Hebrew and read literature while Sarah encouraged him to study the Torah and Kabbalah. It was said that his father represented reason and his mother promoted faith.

In 1944, the secure world of Wiesel's childhood ended abruptly with the arrival of the Nazis in Sighet. The Jewish inhabitants of the village were deported en masse to concentration camps in Poland. Elie, at the age of 15, was separated from his mother and sisters immediately on arrival in Auschwitz. He never saw them again. He managed to remain with his father for the next year as they were worked almost to death, starved, beaten, and shuttled from camp to camp on foot. They had no food, proper shoes, or clothing. In the last months of the war, Wiesel's father succumbed to dysentery, starvation, exhaustion and exposure. In the wake of his own father's death, he was unable to weep due to fatigue and admits to perhaps even feeling relieved at his father's passing as he no longer has to care for him.

After the war, the teenaged Wiesel found himself in an asylum in France. Here he learned for the first time that his two older sisters had survived the war. He then later became a professional journalist, writing for newspapers in both France and Israel. For ten years, he observed a self-imposed vow of silence and wrote nothing about his wartime experience. But in 1955, his meeting with Francois Mauriac persuaded him to write about his experiences. Thanks to him, Elie Wiesel was able to write the #1 New York Times bestseller book, "Night." In this book, he describes his experiences and emotions at the hands of the Nazi during the Holocaust: the roundup of his family and neighbors in the Romania town of Sighet; deportation by cattle car to the concentration camps Auschwitz to Birkenau; the division of his family forever during the selection process; the mental and physical anguish he and his fellow prisoners experienced as they were stripped of their humanity; and the death march from Auschwitz to Birkenau to the concentration camp at Buchenwald. This was not the only reason why he wrote the memoir.

"I wrote it, not for myself really. I wrote it for them, because the survivors are a kind of most endangered species. Every day there were funerals. And I felt that there for a while they were so neglected, so abandoned, almost humiliated by society after war." He wanted to tell them "Look, you must speak. As poorly as we can express our feelings, our memories, but we must try. We are not guaranteeing success, but we must guarantee effort (Wiesel)."

He felt that having survived, he owed something to the dead. He wanted to show support to those who have lost their lives and let them know that they weren't the only one who suffered. He didn't want to talk about it in the first place but in the end he spoke out and expressed his feelings about the holocaust. Who knew that the memoir would turn into a hit?

Even though the book was a best seller, it had it complications. It took him several years before he was able to find a publisher for the French or English versions of the book. Even after he found publishers for the French and English translations, the book only sold a few copies. But in 1956, he was struck by a taxi cab. His injuries confined him to a wheelchair for almost a year. This didn't stop him. He was unable to renew the French document which had allowed him to travel as a "stateless" person so instead he applied for American citizenship successfully. Once he recovered, he remained in New York and became a feature writer for the Yiddish-language newspaper, the Jewish Daily Forward. He then continued to write books in French, including the semi-autobiographical novels L'Aube and Le Jour . In his novel La Ville de la , he imagined a return to his home town, a journey he did not undertake in life until after the book was published.

This still wasn't the end of him. He started writing plays. He has written plays including Zalmen, or the Madness of God and The Trial of God . His other novels include The Gates of the Forest, The Oath, The Testament, and The Fifth Son. His essays and short stories have been collected in the volumes Legends of Our Time, One Generation After, and A Jew Today. Even after many popular novels, he still writes his books in French and his wife Marion would often collaborates with him on their English translation.

As these and other books began to win him an international reputation, Wiesel took an increasing interest in the plight of persecuted Jews in the Soviet Union. He first traveled to the USSR in 1965 and reported on his travels in The Jews of Silence. His 1968 account of the Six Day War between Israel and its Arab neighbors appeared in English as a beggar in Jerusalem.

As time went on, Elie Wiesel accomplished a lot. He was known to millions for his humans' rights activism. He used his fame to plead justice for oppresses people in the Soviet Union, South Africa, Vietnam, Buafua and Bangladesh. Over the years, he spoke out on behalf of the victims of genocide and oppression all over the world, from Bosnia and Darfur. Not only that, he was rewarded later on. On 1978, President Jimmy Carter appointed Wiesel Chairman of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council. He was also rewarded the Congressional Medal of Freedom in 1985 and the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1986.

Even though the Holocaust was horrifying, it really turned his life around. If it wasn't for the Holocaust, he would not have been able to write the memoir "Night" or the other 40 or more of his successful books. He had achieved a lot and even today, people still look at him as the person who survived the Holocaust and changed the world.