Prejudice and Discrimination
Characters that shows prejudice and discrimination is Lieutenant Kotler and Gretel the prejudiced and discriminated against Jews.
Example, Gretel said ”Not the type of children I want to play with, they look filthy. Hilda and Isobel and Louise have a bath every morning and so do I. Those children look like they’ve never had a bath in their lives” [Page 39]
The reason Gretel might have said that is because she judges people by appearance, so Gretel thought the children haven’t had a bath without knowing the full story of what is happening.
Now, even teenagers are showing prejudice and discrimination against people by judging them. I personally think that people should stop judging discriminating
Childhood and Innocence
Characters displaying childhood and innocence are Bruno, Gretel and Shmuel. Example, Bruno and Gretel were very unhappy with moving into another town and were very curious at the fence and the people in striped pajamas. Shmuel was an innocent victim of the Holocaust and had no idea that his father could have possibly been killed. Also, Bruno’s father had lied to Bruno that the salute “Heil Hitler” was just a formal greeting rather than respecting the dictator. The children had no idea that people were being killed.
-“ ‘Heil Hitler,’ he said, which, he presumed, was another way of saying, ‘Well goodbye for now, have a pleasant afternoon’ “ [Page 54]
The reason why they are so innocent could possibly be the fact their father does not let them know of his job, their father lying to them about the people in striped pajamas.
Shmuel is discriminated because of his race when he did nothing wrong and though he is aware of what is happening around him, he still does not know of the gory parts.
We can then interpret from all these that this is one of the main causes of Bruno’s death. He has no idea of the consequences of disguising himself as a Jew and he has no clue of the gas chamber he is in.
Most Kids up to the age of 12 are labeled as innocent and ‘are too young to understand’. I personally feel that adults should give them a glimpse of what is happening around them or like Bruno, something fatal could happen to them should they innocently take a wrong step.
Obedience and Conformity
Bruno has shown obedience to his Mother. When Mother confronted Bruno not to interrupt her when she was talking, Bruno thought of not disobeying her word because he was taught this way, as it is quoted, “ ‘Although I’m sure you’ll see them again in time. And don’t interrupt your mother when she’s talking, please,’ she added, for although this was strange and unpleasant news, there was certainly no need for Bruno to break the rules of politeness which he had been taught.” [Page 7] This shows that Bruno was taught to show his parents obedience, which has been taught to him and this also showed that Bruno had been abiding by the rules his parents have set for him. In real life, we should obey our parents, should anything happen to us and we should also listen to them when they are teaching us how to be respectful.
The characters that shows humanity is Bruno.
Example, “handing some bread and cheese through the wire” [page 142]
The reason why Bruno showed humanity to Shmuel might be because Shmuel was disappointed that Bruno did not had any food with him and from that Bruno could tell Shmuel was hungry.
Unlike Bruno’s family, Bruno never cared about what Shmuel looks like and what his religion is or the clothes he wear ect, Bruno still goes to see Shmuel and brings Shmuel food because he did not really care about the difference between himself and Shmuel and he had humanity.
We should all act graciously to one another with act of kindness and service no matter what differences you may share with that person.
Friendship and Loyalty
Characters that showed friendship and loyalty are Bruno and Shmuel. Bruno looks for Shmuel everyday at the fence and this proves how he treasure the friendship between them both. Bruno tries not to be late for their meetings as he does not want to keep Shmuel waiting. Even when it was raining, Bruno still went to look for Shmuel. Also he did not leave Shmuel behind and continued to help look for Shmuel’s father even though his life is at risk.We should never back down from our friends or family or anyone when they are facing their deepest crisis.