Book Thief Literary Analysis

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From Jew parades to gas chambers, Hitler was known for his cruel and unusual tactics during his reign. At this time when the community is faced with many hardships, Markus Zusak uses passage through windows in The Book Thief as a way of gaining freedom from his control. On April 20, 1940, Hitler’s birthday along with Germany’s victory over its enemies and the restraints that held them back since the end of World War I was celebrated by all people of Molching. The Fuhrer called for a grand celebration with parades and music, but more importantly, fire. Citizens were required to surrender all literature from the “old Germany” to be burned in the name of Hitler’s glory. At that time, book burnings were a common way of getting rid of views that did not correspond to Hitler’s. However, Liesel realizes the power that words give an individual and she refuses to give up her books. Soon afterwards, she befriends Ilsa Hermann and is introduced to her extensive collection of books in her library. Their friendship, however, does not last very long and Liesel soon turns to thievery. To steal books from Ilsa’s library, Liesel waited for the right moment when she could gain access through “the open window that breathed a slice of air in” (286). By gaining this access, Liesel is exposed to words that eventually save her life from a bombing caused by the Fuhrer. Like Liesel, Hans Hubermann also had an incident with a window of the Nazi Party. It all started when the Jews were beginning to be terrorized. A group of men had vandalized a Jewish man’s store, Kleinmann’s. Hans was so distraught that he “drove his fist onto the door and then the window of the NSDAP” (182). The glass shattered and Hans stated that he could no longer join the party. By doing this, he blatantly goes against the grain by defying Hitler. After this event, Hans is put on the waiting list and his hatred for

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