Night Response – In the Face of Hopelessness

In the novel
Night, by Elie Wiesel I originally thought that I wouldn’t find much interest in the novel, but as I began delving deeper and deeper into the novel I became more engrossed into the story. As I finished the novel, I simply was red in the face when considering my past evaluation of the book. Each word was structured with precision and detail;each sentence created a clear picture in the mind that transitioned flawlessly; each chapter gave an unfiltered view of the atrocities that the Jewish people have faced, both physically and spiritually.


The novel Night goes into describing a horrible event that most people would try to forget, an event told through the perspective of an innocent child who witnessed the true depth of human depravity. With this Elie Wiesel concentrated on the theme of one’s own belief and faith being challenged in the face of true despair. When the god that the Jew’s believed in, trusted in; allowed the death of untold numbers of Jews in an indiscriminate slaughter. This child, Elie Wiesel was once a person profoundly devoted to his religion, to the study of finding god, to seek the question he would ask of his faith. In Night, it goes on to tell Elie’s perspective of the story as it happened and as it goes to tell his own personal conflict, as well as others faced in this world where god had seemingly abandoned them. The novel Night continuously explores Elie’s loss of faith as he experiences cruelty beyond what a child would think possible.


The message that Elie Wiesel is trying to send us when he wrote Night was that “it should not happen again”, and yet instead of trying to persuade the readers in this, he recounts his experience to us, and that in itself is enough. The narration allows us to become the character and experience what Elie faced and the emotions he feels, as well as his struggles with his faith. The perspective that Elie Wiesel provides gives us an honest and unfiltered recollection of events of the holocaust without any attempt to influence the reader; however this is only at face value. As Elie Wiesel recounts his experiences he creates an atmosphere to slowly guide us emotionally. He allows us to slowly form an opinion for ourselves.


During the story, Elie Wiesel demonstrates how his faith and the faith of Jews had in their religion, humanity, and their will to live is lost during the holocaust. In that moment all I could think about is what could they have done? In the perspective of the Jews the god they believed in left them, their loved one’s were taken from them, and the depravity and cruelty only became worse. How could anyone not lose faith in that situation?


“Where He is? This is where-hanging here from the gallows…” (Page 65)


Elie Wiesel focused on the questioning of one’s faith, which is a topic I understand fully. My parents were somewhat very religious, however they did not completely force it on their children and instead allowed them to choose for themselves as time went on. As I got older I began to question. This train of thought began when I was 12 years old, when my uncle had a heart attack. This caused turmoil for my entire family, especially my father, who lost his brother. I would think why would god who was both omniscient and master of the universe allow such a thing to happen? 


“I concurred with Job! I was not denying His existence, but I doubted his absolute Justice.” (Page 45)


Just at the start Elie began to question his god, the god who allowed the death of just not just women and children, but babies. Who would want to believe that their god, their master of the universe, would be so cruel as to let untold numbers of Jews to be slaughtered as a test? This I holehearting agree with.


I don’t believe in god, I think that people only followed such things to give themselves solace; solace in the fact that the world no matter how bad it gets or how much they suffer, there would always be a way out. Because all that people need in times of despair, including myself, is one piece of hope in the seemingly endless abyss of darkness.


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4 thoughts on “Night Response – In the Face of Hopelessness

  1. Dear Harsh,

    I really enjoyed reading your post! I especially loved the way you structured it, by first discussing your overall experience reading the novel, then explaining the theme of the book, and lastly discussing your views on religion and on if you agree with Elie. Your response connected both the novel and your own experiences/thoughts wonderfully, and I did not feel like I needed more background information to comprehend your points. Adding in quotes really helped make the structure of your post more unique and artsy, which helped keep me engaged throughout your piece. I noticed that you used rhetorical questions a few times in this, which helped me better understand your views on the novel and on God.

    As for improvements, I noticed quite a few GUMPS in the piece. For example, in your final line, you wrote “seminglessly.” I can assume that you meant “seemingly,” but it was still a little unclear. I noticed that you also did not use commas sometimes when you were supposed to. These are minor details, but they were noticeable and retracted from the flow of your piece.

    Overall, your piece was insightful to read. It’s unfortunate that we did not get to know each other this year. I realize that I would’ve enjoyed hearing your thoughts and opinions in a one-on-one setting after reading this piece. However, I’m excited to read more of your writing as the semester goes on.


    1. Dear Riya,

      Firstly, I would like to thank you for reading my piece and taking the time to review and comment on it. I’m glad that you understood and felt such clarity when reading my piece. I was worried about the flow of my piece but you put all those feeling to rest. I learned more literary techniques for my writing structure so I put it into practice into this piece and with your comment I know I’m going into the direction I want. I noticed the error with “seemingly” and have fixed it and for that I thank you. I realize I have to do a little bit more background work and I’ll strive to prove that.


  2. Dear Harsh,

    This piece was absolutely outstanding! You were able to captivate readers into you writing through deep concepts and ideas that were conveyed in this novel. The vocabulary and diverse sentence structure helped enhance the quality of your work. I understood your viewpoint that after all the turmoil you have experienced there cannot possibly be a god. With all the pain that innocent humans like the Jews of the Holocaust had experienced, where was god? Today I still question my faith like how you did, especially when I learn about stories like Eliezer’s, I think that god cannot truly be real. Your final paragraph conveys these ideas beautifully as you explain how humans just have religion to give them hope in times of despair and darkness. Your use of examples from the text connected well to your overall message and the personal example used helped amplify your beliefs.
    For improvement, I would suggest that you talk more deeply and elaborate on why you don’t believe in god as in your second last paragraph you say that you agree with Eliezer’s beliefs, but don’t explain why. I think that by explaining the why portion your work can become much better.
    Overall, this is a wonderful and well-thought blog post that I really enjoyed reading. I am thrilled to read more of your work in the near future.

    Kind Regards,

    1. Dear Zanir

      Before anything else, I would like to thank for taking the time to read and consider my piece. What you have written was very encouraging, I’m glad that liked my piece and that you agree with my opinion. Thank you for acknowledging my idea on religion on the text and I’m glad that you agree with it. I’ve been trying to improve my sentence structure and your comment gave me confidence that it’s going in the right way. I’ll remember to what you said about expanding on my thought and I’ll try to do better and be stricter on my own proofreading to catch opportunities to expand. For that I thank you.


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