Why does Elie become angry with his father, in the book Night?

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mlsldy3 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Elie was a young teen when the German came in and took the Jews into the concentration camps, during WWII. At the beginning of the story, he is close with his family, including his father. Throughout his journey, his relationship changes drastically.

Elie becomes angry with his father, when his father is beaten by Idek. The beating is bad, and Elie is angry that his father has not learned how to avoid Idek's anger and wrath. When his father is beaten, Elie shows no sympathy or compassion for his father. He only shows anger. We can see how Elie is growing in his maturity level. He now has to become his father's caregiver, and he resents this very much. His anger towards his father extends to many others, as well. Because his father is getting older, and his health is deteriorating, he can no longer keep up with Elie. Elie now feels his father is a hindrance. When his father dies, Elie shows no sadness over the loss of a family member. He has become hard and cold.

The horrors of the Holocaust are very real in the book. Elie's memories of his time in Auschwitz and Buchenwald are brought to life in a work of literature that is haunting. Elie's anger is not only towards his father, but also at God. He questions constantly where God is in all of this. This piece of work, brings to life the real tragedies and horrors of what another human being can do to another one.