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In chapter 5 of Night, why didn't Elie fast on Yom Kippur?

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marimal30 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted April 6, 2009 at 8:12 AM via web

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In chapter 5 of Night, why didn't Elie fast on Yom Kippur?

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monzi | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 2, 2011 at 1:48 PM (Answer #1)

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because he had lost his faith in god, and he thinks it was stupid to fast when they are starving.

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ladyvols1 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted April 6, 2009 at 8:33 AM (Answer #2)

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In Elie Wiesel's novella "Night" there were many Jewish Holiday's spent in the Nazi Concentration camps.  The incident you are asking about occurred after he and his father had been moved to Buna.  He states in the novel,

"I did not fast.  First of all, to please my father who had forbidden me to do so.  and then, there was no longer any reason for me to fast.  I no longer accepted God's silence.  As I swallowed my ration of soup, I turned that act into a symbol of rebellion, of protest against Him.  And I nibbled on my crust bread. (pg 69)

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thedutchinator | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted January 25, 2012 at 9:49 AM (Answer #3)

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because since that elie had lost faith in god he didn't think it was write to obey his relegion and delebritley starve himself when they are suffering at the hands of the SS, so elie decieded to eat and drink to survive

 

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anaiah777 | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted May 23, 2013 at 7:07 PM (Answer #4)

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Because elie lost faith in God and figured yom kippur was a waste of time

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kipling2448 | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted January 5, 2015 at 2:30 AM (Answer #5)

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In Chapter Five of Elie Wiesel's memoir of life in the German concentration camps, especially in Auschwitz, Night, he dedicates a brief passage to the arrival of the Jewish observance of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, when Jews are expected to fast.  Fasting while living under the extremely austere conditions imposed on them by their Nazi captors would, as Wiesel's father acknowledged, be redundant.  They were already being starved to death.  In addition to the illogical nature of fasting under these circumstances, Wiesel eschewed the ritual of fasting out of his despondency regarding God's silence amid all of this human suffering.  As Wiesel wrote in this passage:

"I did not fast. First of all, to please my father who had forbidden
me to do so. And then, there was no longer any reason for me
to fast. I no longer accepted God's silence. As I swallowed my ration
of soup, I turned that act into a symbol of rebellion, of protest
against Him."

Many Jews turned away from their religious beliefs as a result of the Holocaust, arguing that no just God could allow the systematic extermination of six million people solely for their religious beliefs.  Wiesel's decision to forego the Yom Kippur fast was his personal display of rejection of the notion of a just God.

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