The father and son scene in Chapter Seven of Night by Elie Wiesel shows the reader how absolutely terrible things have gotten for the prisoners. The Jews have been traveling by train, eating nothing but the snow which fell into their wagon. When they stopped in a German town, a worker threw a piece of bread into one of the train cars, and the men fought each other to the death for that bread while the Germans looked on as though they were at a circus. When a small piece of the bread landed inside the car Elie was in, he decided that he was not going to go after it, but he saw an elderly man crawling away and soon realized the man had a bit of the bread. As the man tried to eat it, his own son leaped upon him. The father cried out:
"'Meir, Meir, my boy! Don't you recognize me? I'm your father...you're hurting me...you're killing your father! I've got some bread...for you too...for you too...'"(Wiesel 96).
The son, like everyone else, was starving, and his father no longer mattered to him. All that mattered was food, and he killed his own father for that food. He, in turn, was killed by two other men, who beat him to death for that small piece of bread. This is what the Nazis had created.
The Jewish prisoners have been on-board a train, crammed in crowded cars, with no food for over 10 days. They are starving and dying rapidly. When the train stops briefly some workers throw some pieces of bread into the car. Men immediately begin to fight over the bread. The workers are amused and throw more bread.
Elie sees an old man dragging himself toward the bread while holding another piece inside his shirt. As he puts one piece in his mouth he is attacked by his son. He screams "Meir, Meir, my boy! Don't you recognize me?" His son continues beating him until he is dead and takes the bread from him. After killing his father and getting the bread, he is also attacked and killed for bread. You can read the exact details on page 68.