Tell about the way(s) in which you connected with the novel The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. Connect the story to yourself, other novels/films/TV shows, and the world around you.

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When considering how you can connect with The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, you can think about what you and Bruno have in common. Although the story is set during a very specific time and circumstances, there are many common and universal themes present that you may relate to.

Bruno has a lot of trouble with his transition to his new home. If you have ever moved to a new place away from old friends and familiar circumstances, you may find that you have this in common with Bruno. Did you feel alone and disconnected, yet curious and excited the way that Bruno does?

Bruno also has noteworthy relationships with the members of his immediate family. He respects his father very much but also struggles to understand him and is even a little afraid of him. Many children can probably identify with this. He also has difficulty understanding his older sister, Greta, who is going through her own transition, not just with the move but also as she comes of age as a teenager. Perhaps you can identify with this as well.

Also, recall a time when you made a new friend. Bruno and Shmuel quickly become close friends. Even though their circumstances could not be more different, they still find common ground on which to build their friendship. If you have ever made a friend who comes from different circumstances, perhaps you can relate to this as well.

Speaking of larger world events, think about some of the terrible events you may have seen or heard on the news. Whether there is war, natural disasters, poverty, etc., real people are involved in this and are just trying to live their lives. What makes The Boy in the Striped Pajamas so powerful of a story is that it involves otherwise ordinary children living through extreme situations. I am sure you can imagine that such things still take place in today's world.

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If this writing prompt is meant to guide a single paragraph, then I do not recommend trying to connect the novel with everything that is listed in the prompt. The paragraph will read like a list, and there won't be any depth to much of what is written. For connection to a film, my recommendation is to compare the novel to Schindler's List. The film is a highly awarded film about Jewish prisoners and the holocaust. That comparison could be an entire paper on its own.

I would honestly recommend limiting your paragraph to ways that the novel resonated with you personally and how it connects to the wider world. You likely can't relate to Shmuel's exact situation, but you are likely to understand the importance of having a good friend in tough times. This is what Shmuel and Bruno are to each other. I'm sure you can also relate to a moment in your life when a friend betrayed your trust similar to how Bruno betrayed Shmuel in the kitchen.

As for how the book relates to the world around you, I would focus on the theme of racism. The book shows a very depressing outcome of racism being used to justify the murder of millions of people. Racism still exists in this world today, and there are current examples of countries or leaders in recent years that are guilty of genocide. The Darfur region of western Sudan is a good example.

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