In Elie Wiesel's Night, why don’t the Jews in Sighet listen to Moshe the Beadle's warnings about the Holocaust?

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There are, sadly, people in the world today who deny that there had ever been a systematic and painfully successful policy and effort on the part of Nazi Germany to eliminate entire groups of people from the earth. To most such individuals, a hatred of Judaism, anti-Semitism, resides at the core of their beliefs. To others, the suggestion that such an effort could possibly have been conceptualized and carried out simply defies belief. For many European Jews during the 1930s, the thought that discrimination and abuse—mainstays of Jewish existence throughout Europe for hundreds of years—could extend to extermination was similarly beyond comprehension.

Such is the situation Elie Wiesel described in Night, his depiction of life as a young European Jew during the Holocaust. In Wiesel’s account, this manifestation of disbelief—until it was too late—is embodied in the person of Moishe the Beadle. Early in Night , Wiesel describes the figure of Moishe the Beadle in the context of the young...

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