Holocaust Essay

Submitted By rachellouisewilson24
Words: 1266
Pages: 6

Rachel Wilson
Dr. Paschall
English 111
11, October, 2014
The Actuality of Concentration Camps Versus My Misconception of Concentration Camps Since we were children the ideas of the Holocaust associated with concentration camps have been depicted as intense bedlam, death, depression, and hopelessness; however in both Fateless and Fatelessness the camps were places of denial, compliance, bartering, friendship, and somehow a place of happiness. How can it be that in such a place of cruelty these victims find all of these wonderful things to cling to? Denial is the first stage of the coping cycle. The victims, Jews for example, were in denial that they could have allowed their malicious treatment to lead to the genocide of their race. In Fatelessness and Fateless during what is called the round up Gyuri receives numerous chances to run but he feels as though his papers, which confirms his place as a war laborer and allows him to leave the restricted area, will save him. In Fatelessness he and his friends are not fretting when the policeman requests all of the Jews off the bus because they believe their I.D. papers will keep them safe;
“ Then again, we found this all the easier in that quite understandably, safe in the knowledge of our ID cards and the stamp of the war industry authorities, we saw no reason for taking the policeman very seriously” (44)
Also in the book, Fatelessness, we see that after Gyuri’s dad is sent to a labor camp the family receives a letter from him assuring them of his well-being. The family was so desperate for him to come home that they believed those letters and reassured themselves that he was fine and would return home soon but he never returned. They were in denial that this letters were no real and their beloved father, husband, brother, and friend was dead. This denial led to the compliance of the victims. Through the victims thought process of denial, they were led to comply with malicious treatments. They thought if they would just comply with the orders of the authorities that they would survive, even though most faced death. In Fatelessness Gyuri says,
At all events, in any place, even a concentration camp, one gets stuck into a new thing with good intentions, at least that was my experience; for the time being, it was sufficient to become a good prisoner, the rest was in the hands of the future—that, by and large, was how I grasped it, what I based my conduct on, and incidentally was pretty much the same as I saw others were doing in general. (135-136)
Gyuri tries to explain that he, along with the other victims, learned to comply with the defiled environment by looking for the good in everything they endured. By looking for the good in everything, they were compliant to the harsh treatment and were satisfied with being a good prisoner and trying to survive. Consequently, their compliance in hope of survival led to bartering. Concentration camps that were for laborers were set up like a community; in communities’ things you need come at a price. Choosing to barter their day’s rations since they grew cold and wanted what was left of a ragged sweater often drove victims to starvation. Fateless and Fatelessness both play out the struggles Gyuri has with ignoring the Finns, or barters, although Bandi had strictly set rules against it. Bandi acted as Gyuri’s father or older brother figure and created him to be a man because of Bandi Gyuri survived. In Fatelessness Gyuri explains how hard it was to stay away from the tempting offers,
All the less so, however tempting it may be, especially in the morning, when it is “Soup for sale”, because, however strange it may sound, they don’t touch soup nor even the sausage that we occasionally get—nothing prescribed by their religion. “So what do they live on?” you might well ask, and Bandi Citrom would reply: you don’t have to worry about them, they look after themselves. (139)
Bandi was right when he told Gyuri not to worry about them. Finn’s