Sunday, February 22, 2015

Rotation #2 - Question Commander - Chloé C.

1) Why did the stranger turn Vladek's family in to Gestapo?

When Vladek's family made a bunker in their house they found a stranger that discovered their hiding place. Everyone thought the best thing to do was to kill the stranger but instead they decided to help him and in return he turned Vladek's family in. I think that he id that because he was so scared that the Nazis would find out that he actually hid the information about a family that was in the bunker. However, it still intrigues me about how could he do that to someone who helped him and his family.


I chose this image because it represents how betrayal works. Even though the little boy created the plant with love it still tried to kill him when he least expected.

2) Why did Vladek marry someone he didn't love?

In the book Vladek married Mala after Anja's suicide, even though he didn't love her. I think he re-married because he couldn't bear to lose someone so important to him that he tried to replace her. However, what happened was far different than he expected since all he could do with Mala was fight because of attention and money, different from Anja who he loved and still worships.


I chose this image because it represents how Vladek was hoping his wish to replace Anja and try to love someone else affected the marriage.

3) Why did the Nazis hang people in the middle of the road, in that specific place?

During the story, Cohn, a man Vladek knew was hanged in the middle of the road for not selling goods with coupons. They knew what they did was wrong and they also knew they would die for it, but the Nazis chose to do that publically instead of doing it somewhere else, like in prison. I think that they decided that specific place because then people would think twice before doing what Cohn did.


I chose this image because it represents an example to others, like Cohn's mistake was an example of what not to do.


  1. Chloe,

    Nice post! I really liked your questions especially your second one since it was discussed amongst my book group in class today. However, I've chose to answer your second question in which you ask why the Nazis hung the Jews in the middle of the road and not somewhere else.

    I personally think that the Nazis hung dead bodies in the middle of the road to remind Jews that sought to flee the land of what happened if they were caught doing anything illegal, which included fleeing and not attending the events that the Nazis organised to kill them, deport them, etc.

    The bodies, like you said, serve as an example of what happens to the jews and how the jews deserved to be hung. While to us the sight of dead bodies doesn't sound at all petrifying as it seems, I'm sure that to the jews, it made them even more scared of the Nazis and encouraged them not to stay out of line and to the non-jews it made them hate the jews even more.

  2. Chloé,

    Good questions, they made me think very deeply. All of your questions were very intriguing; however, I had to agree with you on the first question. When I first read the question, I thought that the stranger did it because he wanted to show he was honorable to the Nazis. Then, I actually started analyzing this question and found out that this unknown man did what he did because he was scared. As a matter of fact, I don't think he would have turned Vladek and his family in because they were all Jews after all. On the other hand, I noticed that after the man turned them in, he came in with some Nazis. This means that the Nazis might somehow threatened the Jew if he didn't turn somebody in. I can infer this because, in the end, Vladek found the Jew dead with other dead bodies. Overall, the Jews turned Vladek's family in because his fear was too overpowering, and this man wasn't ready to lose his life in front of the Nazis.

  3. Chloe,
    You had a very good point that brought up very interesting questions and points and that really changed my view on the topic. I would like to point out a new answer to the first question.
    I believe that as Vladek says in various points of the book, that during times like these there is no friendship, no family, no trust, only every person for themselves. This can be seen when they were discovered in their secret room in the attic. Maybe he was captured by the Germans and turned in this information for his safety or he might have sold them out for protection or a reward. In the end it is evident that there are no bonds during war, and that if you do something good for someone they will take advantage of you. What do you think?

  4. Chloe, first of all I want to say that what got my attention and made me want to read your post was your first image. I like that you chose that one, and it connects with your post nicely. Also, you made me think about the stranger betraying Vladek's family in a different way. I didn't remember that they had helped his family, and I agree with your answer: he turned them in because he was scared of the Nazis. I also agree with what Gabe said in his comment; during these times there weren't many people you could trust, even if they helped you or you helped them. In relation to your second question, I was also wondering why Vladek married Mala. I don't know the "right" answer, but I mainly agree with you, I think Vladek married again to fill up the space in his life, but in a different way than what you said. I just think he needed someone too cook and take care of the house, and maybe to help him with sicknesses. Lastly, your answer to the third question is probably correct. The Nazis hung the Jews in public to set an example and frighten them. You have good questions, and they can definitely help the reader understand the book better.