Prejudice and Discrimination
The Germans; Nazis were Prejudiced against the Jews. Notable people include Lieutenant Kotler.
“ ‘Hey you!’ He shouted, then adding a word that Bruno did not understand. ‘Come here, you— ‘He said that word again, and something about the harsh sound of it made Bruno look away and feel ashamed to be part of this at all.” (Page 75) This is Lieutenant Kotler treating the Jews with Prejudice and Discrimination.
The Jews in the concentration camps were treated badly and eventually executed because they were discriminated against by the Nazis. Lieutenant Kotler discriminated against the Jews and even the servants in the household because the thinks that he is superior to everyone else.
In the world today, Prejudice and Discrimination is still a big issue. We can find people discriminating against each other. One such example would be racism. This is why there are riots E.g. Singapore race riots 1969. Or it could be that one party claims that they are better than the other which leads to war E.g. Civil War. It is a good practice to have Racial Harmony day and to accept our differences and work together towards a common goal.
Childhood and Innocence
Bruno, Shmuel and Gretel. They were all innocent and did not know what really was going on between them and the Jews.
" 'It must be some sort of Rehersal,' suggested Gretel, ignoring the fact that some of the children, even some of the older ones, even the ones as grown up as her look as if they were crying' " (Page 23)
“Heil Hitler," he said, which, he presumed, was another way of saying, "Well, goodbye for now, have a pleasant afternoon.” (Page 54)
This shows the innocence of Bruno and Gretel. Whilst Bruno and Gretel were looking out of the window into the concentration camp they assumed that the children were having some sort of rehearsal even if the soldiers rudely shoved them into a line and barked orders at them. Bruno also just assumed that what his dad told him was another way to say goodbye, which was actually saluting Hitler. Bruno also didn’t know why the Jews had to be separated by a fence from them because he did not know that the Nazis were discriminating against the Jews.
Bruno's innocence make him wonder why the other Jews should be treated differently because of the fact that the Nazis and the Jews were different and the Nazis were trying to wipe out all the Jews. Because of Bruno's innocence, he finds it strange that they are treating the Jews differently.
We can all learn from Bruno and his innocence in a way as there is no reason why other people should be treated differently because of their religion, race, skin color etc. We should not judge or be Prejudice and Discriminate against others just because they are different from us.
Obedience and Conformity
Soldiers, Shumuel, Prisoners of the holocaust, Maria.
“ ‘What are you doing? Didn’t I tell you to polish those glasses?’ Shmuel nodded his head quickly and started to tremble a little as he picked up another napkin and dipped it in water.” (Shmuel)
Lieutenant Kotler ordered Shmuel and he obeyed his orders. This shows that the prisoners of the Holocaust were obedient when following the Nazi’s orders in fear that they get punished/executed.
We have to be obedient and listen to our parents and teachers. For example if a teacher tells us to listen to him or her teach we have to follow the teacher’s orders. Or when the teacher gives us homework to do we must complete it.
“Grandfather was very proud of his son when he saw him in his new uniform but Grandmother was the only one who seemed unimpressed.” (Page 83)
Bruno's Grandmother did not want Bruno's father to be a soldier as she felt it was wrong to discriminate. Both of them wants to have peace and not to differentiate others with themselves.
We should learn to stand up for our own morales and beliefs like how Bruno's Grandmother did. She found that her son (Bruno's Father) was disgusting as he was serving under the third reich which discriminated the Jews and executed them. She probably did not want her son to do all these things and therefore got disappointed with him.
Friendship and Loyalty
Bruno and Shmuel
“...Despite the mayhem that followed, Bruno found that he was still holding Shmuel's hand in his own and nothing in the world would have persuaded him to let go.” (Page 213)
“You're my best friend, Shmuel... My best friend for life.” (Page 213)
Bruno and Shmuel had developed such a strong friendship that Bruno, due to his courage, innocence and adventurous spirit helped Shmuel find his Father when Shmuel realized that his Father was taken away by the Nazis. Whilst helping Shmuel, Bruno sacrificed his life. They were really best friends until the end and it truly shows friendship and loyalty, as Bruno went as far as to help Shmuel and losing his life.
Link:We can learn from Bruno and Shmuel like helping our friends through tough times, sacrificing ourselves to help our friends when we can.