Wiesel, Elie. Night

Night Front Cover

Night is a book written by Elie Wiesel in 1958. The original 865-page manuscript was written in Yiddish and titled “Un di Velt Hot Geshvign” which loosely translates to “And the World Remained Silent”.

In 1958, a 178-page translation titled La Nuit, published by Les Editions de Minuit, first appeared in France.

Hill & Wang published this book in 1960. The Book Club print appeared in June1967 and the Bantam Edition in April 1982. The cover art of this book was by Bantam Publishers.

This book is the first of a trilogy consisting of Night, Dawn, and Day, to express and reflect the different state of minds of the author. The first book expresses the end of everything, in particular the end in the belief of a God.

This book is a 100-page account covering the period 1944 to 1945 when Elie and his father, imprisoned at the Nazi concentration camps, experienced unspeakable horrors.

The narrative is very powerful, and from the eyes of a young sixteen-year-old person witnessing the systematic murder of his family, and friends. This book describes a Hellish inverted world where one is no longer a human being, where one has no name, family, or friends. Where you have no value or worth, where you are dehumanised and you are alone.

Never Shall I Forget

Book Cover

"Never shall I forget that nocturnal silence which deprived me, for all eternity, of the desire to live. Never shall I forget those moments, which murdered my soul and turned my dreams to dust. Never shall I forget these things, even if I am condemned to live as long as God Himself. Never."

Wiesel, Elie. Night (p. 32)

A useful book even today

I found this book very useful in understanding some of the thought processes that are involved in the psychology of prejudice, and in particular how easy it can become for anyone in a position of authority to justify their inhumanity to another.

In a modern a day context, prejudiced attitudes are less overt and more covert compared to 1980s and 1990s. They still exist today in modern Britain.

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