Tough and gruesome times caused by events happening around an individual’s life play a critical role in triggering emotions which can impact on the relationship that person has with others.
Empirical-based research studies indicate that different individuals who have strong faith in God and also enjoy firm relationship with family and friends may lose faith in both God and mankind during trying moments. However, although relationships can be impacted upon by circumstances, strong family ties play an important role in holding individuals together as this paper examines from the relationship of Eliezer and his father.
A respectful relationship
The relationship Eliezer has with his father at the beginning of the story can be compared to the one he has with God soon after the tough experiences and problems at the Nazi concentration camps hits him (Spector 40).
The author claims that even before going to the camps, there seems to be no cordial relationship between him and his father. This was due to the fact that his father seemed to care more about other people and issues and ignore his son Eliezer altogether.
For instance, at the sighet ghetto, Eliezer had demonstrated positive attitude, passion and interest in studying mysticism. Therefore, he thought of seeking approval and mentorship role from his father who was at that time a respected member of their community and in good position to help him. Unfortunately, his father downplayed his request as a less important matter (Misco 11).
Even though Eliezar’s father refuses to take the mentorship role over his son, his son still looks up to him, obey his will and regards him with utmost respect as his father and also due to his position in the Jewish community. In addition, he also respects his father because it was expected of him to do so according to the orthodox Jewish laws (Frunza 21).
A caring relationship: Eliezer demonstrates his great care and willingness to protect his father from the uncertainties at the concentration camp. At Auschwitz Birkenau, Eliezer develops fear of being separated from his father whom he sees as helpless individual in need of support and care when men and women are separated (Hospital 360).
Despite the weak bond he has with his father, Eliezer begins to feel that he would lose his father too. As a result, he is gripped with fear and develops a deep feeling of care and love for his father. When he is eventually separated from his father, the uncertainty of forthcoming experiences and need to protect his helpless father leads him towards guilt and resentment.
When Eliezer is transferred to block 17 after he is separated from his father, he worries about his father’s well being and continues offering support (Jablon 320). They rely on each other for strength to live despite hardships, work and survival. On the other hand, Eliezer’s father also demonstrates great concern for his son.
For instance, on the first night at Bikenau, a big fire pit is dug in the camp and children are brought in by a lorry and tossed into the fire. While Eliezer is waiting in the line for his turn, his father weeps at the thought of what Eliezer will go through. Besides, his father worries about what his son might have to face alone at the death camp and the expression of emotions by his father assures Eliezer of care and concern for his plight (Bauer 21).
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Frunza, Sandu. “Ethics, religion and memory in Elie Wiesel’s night” Journal for the Study of Religions and Ideologies 9.26 (2010): 94-113. Print
Hospital, Clifford. “Towards maturity in inter-faith dialogue” Cross Currents 57.3 (2007): 356-365. Print.
Jablon, Rachel Leah. “Witnessing as Shivah; Memoir as Yizkor: The Formulation of Holocaust Survivor Literature as Gemilut Khasadim ” Journal of Popular Culture 38.2 (2004): 306-324. Print.
Misco, Thomas.””Nobody told us about what happened”: the current state of holocaust education in Romania. ”International Education 38.1 (2008): 6-21. Print.
Spector, Karen. “God on the Gallows: Reading the Holocaust through Narratives of Redemption ” Research in the Teaching of English 42.1 (2007): 7-55. Print.