Meg Wiviott's Paper Hearts Essay

Words: 548
Pages: 3

Scapegoating is present in Meg Wiviott’s novel, Paper Hearts in order to emphasize the horrendous conditions which Fania and Zlatka lived in; Wiviott successfully argues that even in a world that is corrupt, it is necessary to find a reason to stay alive through the recurrence of scapegoats. Paper hearts takes place in World War II, the late 1930s until the mid 1940s. World War I was resolved with the Treaty of Versailles which blamed Germany for all aspects of the war. As a result Germany had a low morale and was hunting for a boost. Several years later, Hitler because prime minister and he was very anti semitic, thus blaming the Jews for Germany’s failures. The first chapter is told by Zlatka’s perspective and she explains in her own village she hears people calling at her, …show more content…
Later in Paper Hearts, Zlatka secretly constructs a paper heart for her from smuggled supplies, representing everything the Nazis want to crush: hope, love and freedom. The paper heart is signed by all their friends at the concentration camp and Fania explains her special origami heart as, “small enough to fit in the palm of my hand. Big enough to restore my faith” (272). Fania, Zlatka and the birthday heart survive Auschwitz, survive the death marches they are sent on at the end of the war, and survive the war. Fania’s thoughtful birthday gift from Zlatka gives her a reason to keep fighting and staying alive although the world is so cruel to her as a young Jewish girl. Although Fania is scapegoated throughout the course of the entire war, she is able to find her reason to stick around. Wiviott is able to convey this theme through highlighting the historical events of Hitler blaming the Jews for Germany’s issues. In the novel Paper Hearts, both Fania and Zlatka share their stories as Jewish scapegoats in World War II striving for a reason to stay in a world full of torture and