How does Zalman, the young boy from Poland, die? What does the story about Zalman's death suggest about the experience of the evacuation?
Zalman dies in an embarrassing way--literally with his pants down. He is overcome by gastrointestinal distress, and falls to the ground in an attempt to relieve his bowels. With this story, Wiesel conveys the inhumanity of the evacuation. Men die without a shred of dignity. Furthermore, Wiesel believes Zalman was trampeled by the other inmates, rather than shot by the SS. The men are moving unthinkingly, both fueled and numbed by fear. There is little opportunity to comfort one another, and no chance to help a fallen comrade. If...
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