Hey guys! I am out for a PD today so here are your assignments. Please be on your best behavior. I expect nothing but the best from you guys! Have a great Friday and a safe weekend!
Compare and contrast the two works below. You should write a one pager in Docs and share it with me.
Excerpt 1: From “The Book Thief,” by Markus Zusak
For the book thief, everything was going nicely.
For me, the sky was the color of Jews.
When their bodies had finished scouring for gaps in the door, their souls rose up. When their fingernails had scratched at the wood and in some cases were nailed into it by the sheer force of desperation, their spirits came toward me, into my arms, and we climbed out of those shower facilities, onto the roof and up, into eternity’s certain breadth. They just kept feeding me. Minute after minute. Shower after shower.
I’ll never forget the first day in Auschwitz, the first time in Mauthausen. At that second place, as time wore on, I also picked them up from the bottom of the great cliff, when their escapes fell awfully awry. There were broken bodies and dead, sweet hearts. Still, it was better than the gas. Some of them I caught when they were only halfway down. Saved you, I’d think, holding their souls in midair as the rest of their being – their physical shells – plummeted to the earth. All of them were light, like the cases of empty walnuts. Smoky sky in those places. The smell like a stove, but still so cold.
I shiver when I remember – as I try to de-realize it.
I blow warm air into my hands, to heat them up.
But it’s hard to keep them warm when the souls still shiver.
I always say that name when I think of it.
Twice, I speak it.
I say His name in a futile attempt to understand. “But it’s not your job, to understand.” That’s me who answers. God never says anything. You think you’re the only one he never answers? “Your job is to…” And I stop listening to me, because to put it bluntly, I tire me. When I start thinking like that, I become so exhausted, and I don’t have the luxury of indulging fatigue. I’m compelled to continue on, because although it’s not true for every person on earth, it’s true for the vast majority – that death waits for no man – and if he does, he doesn’t usually wait very long.
On June 23, 1942, there was a group of French Jews in a German prison, on Polish soil. The first person I took was close to the door, his mind racing, then reduced to pacing, then slowing down, slowing down…
Please believe me when I tell you that I picked up each soul that day as if it were newly born. I even kissed a few weary, poisoned cheeks. I listened to their last, gasping cries. Their vanishing words. I watched their love visions and freed them from their fear.
I took them all away, and if ever there was a time I needed distraction, this was it. In complete desolation, I looked at the world above. I watched the sky as it turned from silver to gray to the color of rain. Even the clouds were trying to get away.
Sometimes I imagined how everything looked above those clouds, knowing without question that the sun was blond, and the endless atmosphere was a giant blue eye.
They were French, they were Jews, and they were you.
Excerpt 2: From “Auschwitz Shifts From Memorializing to Teaching,” a 2011 article by Michael Kimmelman
Flowers for victims of Auschwitz, left in January during ceremonies marking the 66th anniversary of the camp’s liberation. Go to related article »Credit Kacper Pempel/Reuters
For nearly 60 years, Auschwitz has told its own story, shaped in the aftermath of the Second World War. It now unfolds, unadorned and mostly unexplained, in displays of hair, shoes and other remains of the dead. Past the notorious, mocking gateway, into the brick ranks of the former barracks of the Polish army camp that the Nazis seized and converted into prisons and death chambers, visitors bear witness via this exhibition.
Now those in charge of passing along the legacy of this camp insist that Auschwitz needs an update. Its story needs to be retold, in a different way for a different age.
…A proposed new exhibition at the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum here, occupying some of the same barracks or blocks, will retain the piled hair and other remains, which by now have become icons, as inextricable from Auschwitz as the crematoria and railway tracks. But the display will start with an explanatory section on how the camp worked, as a German Nazi bureaucratic institution, a topic now largely absent from the present exhibition, which was devised by survivors during the 1950s.
Back then they wished to erase the memory of their tormentors, as the Nazis had tried to erase them, so they said as little as possible in their exhibition about the Germans who had conceived and run the camp. They focused on mass victimhood but didn’t highlight individual stories or testimonials of the sort that have become commonplace at memorial museums as devices to translate incomprehensible numbers of dead into real people, giving visitors personal stories and characters they can relate to. Those piles, including prostheses and suitcases, also stressed the sheer scale of killing at a time when the world still didn’t comprehend, and much of it refused to admit to, what really happened here.
Efforts are underway to update the exhibitions at Auschwitz. Above, Piotr Cywinski, the director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum.Credit Piotr Malecki for The New York Times
…The new exhibition would go on to describe the process of extermination, leading visitors step by step through what victims experienced, and end with a section on camp life, meaning the “daily dehumanization and attempts to keep one’s humanity,” said Piotr Cywinski, the bearish, red-bearded 39-year-old Polish director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum.
“If we succeed we will show for the first time the whole array of human choices that people faced at Auschwitz,” he explained. “Our role is to show the human acts and decisions that took place in extreme situations here — the diversity of thinking and reasoning behind those decisions and their consequences. So, we may pose the question, should a mother give a child to the grandmother and go to selection alone, or take the child with her? This was a real choice, without a good solution, but at Auschwitz you had to make the choice.”
…The gradual passing of survivors has also meant that Auschwitz faces a historical turning point.
“Teenagers now have grandparents born after the war,” Mr. Cywinski noted. “This is a very big deal. Your grandparents are your era but your great-grandparents are history.
“The exhibition at Auschwitz no longer fulfills its role, as it used to,” he continued. “More or less eight to 10 million people go to such exhibitions around the world today, they cry, they ask why people didn’t react more at the time, why there were so few righteous, then they go home, see genocide on television and don’t move a finger. They don’t ask why they are not righteous themselves.
“To me the whole educational system regarding the Holocaust, which really got under way during the 1990s, served its purpose in terms of supplying facts and information. But there is another level of education, a level of awareness about the meaning of those facts. It’s not enough to cry. Empathy is noble, but it’s not enough.”
This is the theme to which officials here return often. Auschwitz, they say, must find ways to engage young people (some 850,000 students came last year), so they leave feeling what the director called “responsibility to the present.”
Once you are done begin reading The Book Thief. There is a link to a pdf text on the top of my wesbite labeled “The Book Thief Online Version.” Just read the prologue and answer the questions for the prologue below. Make sure your answers are complete sentences.
Reading Comprehension Questions: The Book Thief
(Please write on a separate sheet of paper. You will receive NO CREDIT if you write on this paper.)
1.) In “Death and Chocolate,” Death says he sees what before the humans?
2.) What/who is Death referring to when he says it is the “leftover humans?”
3.) How many times does Death say that he saw the book thief?
4.) Who stands beside the railway line?
5.) Why does Death linger at the railway line?
6.) Where does Death FIRST see the book thief?
7.) Where does Death SECOND see the book thief? What is she doing and who is with her?
8.) Where does Death see the book thief a THIRD time? What is she doing?
9.) At the end of this section, Death says that he carries certain stories around with him to prove to him that humans are what?
10.) In the first four sections, Death introduces himself and discusses the importance of colors. What are the 4 colors mentioned in these first four sections (in order)?
11.) On the train, Liesel has a dream, what is her dream of? Why is this significant?
12.) Who dies in the first section?
13.) What does Liesel find and take at the burial site?
14.) Why does Death attend the burial?
15.) Who are the Hubermanns? Where do they live?
16.) Give a description of Hans Hubermann. What are some hobbies he enjoys?
17.) Give a description of Rosa Hubermann. What does she do for work?
18.) What does Rosa call Liesel? Why do you think she calls her this name?
19.) Compare/Contrast the relationship between Hans and Liesel and Rosa and Liesel.
20.) Why is dangerous that Liesel has brown eyes?
21.) How does Hans comfort Liesel when she starts having nightmares about her brother?
22.) What did they discover about Liesel in “The Woman with the Iron Fist?”
23.) When Liesel turns 10 she is forced to join the _________________________.
24.) Describe Rudy Steiner.
25.) What is Frau Diller’s “one golden rule?”
26.) What is the “road of yellow stars?”
27.) Who does Rudy imitate that enrages his father so? Why is his father angry with him?
28.) After Liesel wets the bed, what is Hans reaction? What does he find in her mattress?
29.) Who teaches Liesel to read and write?
30.) What is the “smell” Liesel refers to as the “smell of friendship?”
31.) When forced to read in front of her class, what does Liesel do instead?
32.) What is the name of the second book Liesel steals?
33.) In the Prologue, Death tells readers Liesel will steal her first book from ice and her second book from fire. What is meant here?
34.) Who is “Werner?”
35.) What does Liesel mean she says, “There were not many people who could say that their education had been paid for with cigarettes?”
36.) Who does Liesel want to write a letter to? Be specific.
37.) What is Liesel’s birthday present to herself?
38.) Who comes to the Huberman’s house the day of the celebration for Hitler’s birthday?
39.) How is the relationship between Hans and his son? How is their relationship a parallel to Germany and its people at that time?
40.) Why does Hans slap Liesel? What do they do after the hit?
41.) Does anyone see Liesel pull the book from the fire?
42.) What is Hans reaction to Lielsel’s second thievery?
43.) Why does Hans go to the Nazi Party office and ask about his application and then purchase a copy of Mein Kampf?
44.) Who does Liesel think saw her take the second book from the fire?
45.) What does the mayor’s wife show Liesel and what is her reaction?
46.) What does it say about the mayor’s wife (who leads the town) that she aligns herself with Liesel, the girl she saw stealing books?
47.) What does Death reveal to us at the beginning of “Enter the Struggle?”
48.) Who is Johann Hermann? What has happened to him and how do we know?
49.) Rudy joins Liesel in her thievery but this time they are what kind of stealers? What did they steal and who from first?
50.) Rudy and Liesel share a happy moment in Nazi Germany, reminding us of the blend between lightness and darkness, what is this happy moment?
51.) What does Walter Kugler do for Max? What are some things he gives him? Why?
52.) Was Max German?
53.) Max says Mein Kampf “saves” him- how so? How is this ironic?
54.) How do we know Liesel has a sense of right and wrong and morality?
55.) Who is Arthur Berg?
56.) How do we know Liesel and Max will soon meet one another?
57.) Who is the “struggler?”
58.) Where does Max arrive at the end of Part 3?