What are the character traits of the main characters in the Devil's Arithmetic? Physical, Emotional, & Social-- one of each, for at least Hannah, Chaya, Rivka, Shmuel, Gitl, and other main characters you can think of!
Hannah is a spoiled Jewish girl with no sense of her own religion. She is self-centered and dislikes many of her family members. Her world abruptly changes when she whisked back in time to experience the Holocaust.
Chaya is the alter ego of Hannah. If not for her, Hannah would remain clueless about her religion and the past. Though she at first is confused about the transition between the future and the past, she soon becomes a strong, caring person. Her sacrifice in the place of Rivka showed her strength. The story-telling at which she excelled entertained the girls in the face of a bleak existence.
Rivka is the most courageous of the characters remaining kind where Gitl is angry and brittle. Rivka helps the newcomers and deals with the Nazis on their terms. Her kindness saved many lives and eased the sufferings of others. She is the one to remind others to keep the memories to share with the future generations. She is strong both mentally and physically to survive the nightmarish concentration camp.
Shmuel is a kind-hearted, loving, generous man whose death at the hands of the Nazis after his escape attempt shows his bravery. He helps Hannah adjust to her new life as Chaya. His love for Fayge never dies as he holds her in his arms at their execution.
Gitl has a hard exterior and a no-nonsense demeanor. They serve her well in the concentration camp. She fights for what she needs and has a sharp tongue for those who do not do things as they should. Beneath her grumpy exterior of "The Bear" she loves Chaya and helps her adjust to camp life. She is distraught at the death of the little girl Tizpporah who was the daughter of her suitor.
Fayge is a spoiled-little-rich girl in the sense that her father was the rabbi in the village. Though not rich by our standards, she expects things to be of a certain standard for her wedding, which never occurs. She refuses to marry Shmuel without a proper ceremony until she is killed with him. The fact that she survives at all until then is surprising.
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