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Elie Wiesel was born in 1928 in Sighet, Transylvania, which is now part of Romania. He was fifteen years old when he and his family were deported by the Nazis to Auschwitz. His mother and younger sister perished, his two older sisters survived. Elie and his father were later transported to Buchenwald, where his father died shortly before the camp was liberated in April 1945.
After the war, Elie Wiesel studied in Paris and later became a journalist. During an interview with the distinguished French writer, Francois Mauriac, he was persuaded to write about his experiences in the death camps. The result was his internationally acclaimed memoir, Night (La Nuit), which has since been translated into more than thirty languages.

Elie Wiesel's statement, "...to remain silent and indifferent is the greatest sin of all..."stands as a succinct summary of his views on life and serves as the driving force of his work. Wiesel is the author of 36 works dealing with Judaism, the Holocaust, and the moral responsibility of all people to fight hatred, racism and genocide.

NPR INTERVIEW

*Students will be expected to read Night individually, while keeping up with Julius Caesar class work, as well as the Global Research project.
*Students will be expected to complete the reading of Night by: March 27, 2015.



JOURNAL: You will keep a typed reactionary journal (at least one-page in length), so that you will have at least five entries at the end of the memoir. The writing can be in first person, (but still no second person (you)) and it must connect to the reading. Other than that, there are no limitations. I am looking for depth of thought and good writing, equally the rubric reflects that. I encourage you to respond in a way that is meaningful to you.


Cover - 30 Points

30 - Artistic, Creative, Connects to theme of journal/theme of Night

20 – three of four aspects named above
10 - one of four
0 – no cover

Technique - 20 Points

20 – one to three errors in grammar, syntax, verb usage, punctuation.

10 – four to seven errors
5 – eight to eleven errors
0 – twelve or more errors

Holistic Writing - 50 Points

50 – Creative, establishes controlling idea of journal, make explicit connections to life, texts, etc. in-depth analysis of novel, no plot summary, voice.

40 – five of the above-named aspects
30 – three of the above-named aspects
20- two of the above-named aspects
10- one of the above-named aspects



To be neutral—silent—amidst oppression and suffering empowers the oppressors; neutrality—silence—amidst oppression and suffering furthers the humiliation and destruction of the oppressed.

In this excerpt from his Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech, Elie Wiesel reminds the audience of “urgent importance of the Holocaust and the evil drove it and casts those who would remain silent in the role of the perpetrator.” Incorporating the voice of a “young Jewish boy” (Wiesel’s younger self), Wiesel confronts the choice of silence versus raising your voice against injustice, cruelty, and inhumanity........


The purpose of acceptance speeches such as this is usually to express a statement of purpose, or to impart some kind of wisdom or lesson to an audience. With this in mind, what is Wiesel's purpose? What lesson is he trying to impart to his audience?

Discuss as a class what Wiesel is trying to say in this acceptance speech. What is his message, his purpose? Do you think the speech conveys the message successfully?