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The Cage

  • Date Submitted: 06/16/2011 08:21 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 49.5 
  • Words: 407
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The Cage is a poignant Holocaust memoir that recounts the horrific experiences of 16-year-old Riva Minsky [aka Ruth Minsky Sender] a Jewish teenager living in Poland during WW II. Her widowed mother looks after Riva, and her three younger brothers, but then they get relocated to the Lodz ghetto and soon Rivas mother is taken away to a concentration camp. Riva now finds herself the guardian of her three brothers, and tries her best to cope under the most trying circumstances. Laibele, the
youngest, suffers from tuberculosis, and despite this infliction, his spirit is still strong though the ghettos terrible lack of amenities eventually causes his death. Riva is left with her two brothers, Motele and Moishele and tries to keep the family together. But the siblings are not immune to the mass deportations and soon find themselves sent to Auschwitz, the notorious extermination camp. The rest of the book details the fate of the siblings.
Based on Ruth Minsky Senders {Riva]real life experiences in the Lodz ghetto, this harrowing Holocaust memoir is truly poignant to read - things that we take for granted on a daily basis is portrayed as unattainable luxuries in this book. Lack of food, the dearth of firewood to keep oneself warm on a cold winters night, and above all, the loss of personal freedom. Riva and her siblings are forced to grow up before their time - the innocence of childhood is replaced by a sense of street smartness deemed a necessity to survive [when Motele steals firewood and then refuses to give up the names of his accomplices shows a remarkable sense of maturity for a young boy]. Then there is the constant fear - when will the Germans come for them, will they be able to get through the day without being harassed by the Jewish police or the Germans, will they be separated...? These fears are portrayed as altogether real and there are many cliffhangers throughout Rivas account that keeps one turning the pages. A real sense of urgency and terror is...


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