The Boy in the Striped Pajamas Essay Example


Two-thirds of Jewish people living in Europe at the time of World War II were killed by Nazis.  The Boy in the Striped Pajamas describes what life was like in the concentration camps and for the Jews at the time. In the book The Boy in the Striped Pajamas it shows the relationship of the two nine year old boys, one a son of a Nazi soldier, and the other a Jew. They become friends, even though the circumstances that are happening around them would not permit them. The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is a work of realistic historical fiction because it represents real events, people, and places.

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas shows an example of what could be real events. John Boyne states in his book The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, “They were all piling into a long room that was surprisingly warm and must of been very securely built...in fact it felt completely airtight” (Boyne 110). This quote means they were going to be gassed by the Nazi soldiers and they put them in a room that was air tight so the gas didn’t leak out an contaminate the air around them. Author Toby Axelrod comments in his book In The Camps,  “At Auschwitz-Birkenau, mass killing took place in gas chambers, which were disguised as showers”  (Axelrod 12). They disguised these as showers, so a myriad number of Jewish people would go into the gas chambers effortlessly.  

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas shows an example of what could be real historical people.  In the text Bruno states, “Gretels room has changed quite considerably since the the last time he had been there. For one thing there wasn't a single doll in sight...in their place she hung up maps of Europe that father had given her” (Boyne 94). The Hitler youth were indoctrinated by believing everything that Hitler or the Nazi party told them. H.W. Kotch writes in his book The Hitler Youth “Much more than was already the case in the NPEAs there was a stress on physical performance and general rather than on intellectual capacity (Kotch 6). The people attending the National Political Institutes of Education (NPEA) were meant to become the future leadership of Germany- political, administrative, and military. They didn’t care how accomplished the Hitler youth was they cared about their Military skills.

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas shows an example of what could be a real place. In the text Bruno states  “About twenty feet further along from the garden and the flowers and the bench with the plaque on it everything changed...there was a huge wire fence... Further than the eye could see (Boyne 22). This quote explains what was between Bruno's house and the camp and how they live with a garden and a bench and the Jews don’t have anything. Susan Meyer states in her book Norman Rockwell World War II “In Addition to the regular terrors of daily life at a forced labor camp some of the largest camps also performed scientific experiments on prisoners” (Meyer 36). This quote is talking about the camps that performed scientific experiments on Jewish people mostly twins. 

John Boyne’s inspirational book helps readers understand  things they are not habitual with. Readers can read this and feel what the victims went through in the Holocaust by the perspective of a nine year old boy named Bruno. This is how The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is a work of realistic historical fiction because it talks about real people ,places, and events.

 

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