Describe the prisoners' indoctrination into concentration camp life and how it benefits tht Nazis.

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brettd eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Nazis were very good at running concentration camps by the time Auschwitz was opened.  They had perfected the means by which they controlled prisoners, and this effort, both in real life and in the book Night, which, after all, is based on Elie Wiesel's own experiences, centered around giving the prisoners hope that they could somehow survive this.

At the entrance to every concentration camp was the sign with the German words "Arbeit Macht Frei", work will make you free, which somehow suggested that this wasn't the death camp that it was.  Prisoners ran on fear, and were conditioned to do so.  They feared that they would be randomly selected for executions or beatings, and that the only thing that would prevent this would be to follow every command, and work as hard as they could.  New prisoners learned this very quickly.

The Nazis benefited from this in many ways.  Besides being able to control the camps more easily, the workers made them war material, uniforms, and other goods sold in Germany that made the Holocaust, ironically and horribly, profitable.