"Night" by Elie Wiesel, Is it fiction?

Essay by gnome619High School, 10th gradeA+, May 2004

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The validity of the book Night, by Elie Wiesel, is questionable. Some say it is non-fiction, others historical fiction, and yet others complete fiction. I believe that this book is non-fiction, though with a few indiscretions on account of the fact that he wrote the book ten years after he experienced the events. One reason for this belief is the way Wiesel writes the book. A second is how he brings humanity into the characters in the book making them much more believable. Reason three is the way Wiesel so bluntly states the atrocities of the Nazis.

The endings of the sections and chapters of the book pull the reader in and make the story that much more believable. On page 15 he writes "An open tomb. / A hot summer sun." after he describes their houses as they leave the ghetto. "I was fifteen years old."

comes after he watches a son kill his father for a scrape of bread and then be murdered himself on page 96. On page 32 Wiesel swears never to forget what happened, ever. "Never shall I forget that night, the first night in camp, which turned my life into one long night, seven times cursed and seven times sealed. Never shall I forget that smoke. Never shall I forget the little faces of the children, whose bodies I saw turned into wreaths of smoke beneath a silent blue sky.

Never shall I forget those flames which consumed my faith forever.

Never shall I forget that nocturnal silence which deprived me, for all eternity, of the desire to live. Never shall I forget those moments which murdered my God and my soul and turned my dreams to dust. Never shall I forget these things, even if I am condemned to live...