What was the public reaction to Moshe's story in Night?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The reaction to Moshe the Beadle's story is one of rejection with being dismissive.  The Jewish individuals of Sighet essentially negate his story.  Their rationales are not openly asserted, but are clearly present.  Moshe is perceived as different, and those in Sighet deny his humanity by dismissing he and his story because of his difference.  At the same time, there might be an element of rationalization or denial involved as many of the Jewish people of Sighet did not want to accept that what Moshe the Beadle had articulated could be considered as reality.  The combination of fear and rejection combine to create a response to Moshe which was to essentially deny his own humanity as well as his warnings, something which proved quite prophetic as the narrative evolved.

bmadnick eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Moshe is taken away with other foreign-born Jews and is somehow able to escape and return to the village. When he tells the villagers that the Jews who were taken away have been killed, the villagers refuse to believe him, and Moshe eventually stops telling them what happened. The villagers think he's crazy, refusing to heed his warning.

mkcapen1 | Student

In the book Night Moshe the Beadle has always been well liked by the people in the community.  Moshe had talked long hours with Elie about the cabala and faith.  One day he is forced to leave Signet because he is a foreign Jew.

Moshe is forced onto a cattle car  by the Hungarian police.  After several months Moshe returned to Signet.  Elie sees him sitting on a bench.  Moshe tells Eli that he had been taken across the border and the Gestapo was there.

The Jews Hd been put into lorries and driven into the forest.  They were forced to dig huge graves and then were slaughtered and kicked into the graves.  Even infants were tossed into the air and shot. He had escaped and returned to warn the others.  Moshe had lost all sense of hope.  He had no more joy in him.  The people did not believe him and thought he was just crazy.  Moshe feels that he was saved to warn the people.

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