Primo Levi : A Survivor Of The Holocaust

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In the face of exceeding cruelty and outlandish circumstances, an individual is certain to experience a shift in their perspective of the world, likely extending even to their moral stance. This was the case for Primo Levi, a survivor of the Holocaust who was rescued from the deplorable conditions of a concentration camp. The tortures of the Lager forced Primo Levi and his peers to redefine their pursuits of self-interest and survival in order to adapt to inhumane conditions, and his story solidifies my belief that morality is relative based upon social and situational factors. The intensity and extent of horrific practices enforced by Hitler and the Nazis were unprecedented and unanticipated. Each of those who were sent to the concentration camps entered blindly into the depravity that awaited them. Snatched away from civilization and subjected to less-than-bestial treatment, the prisoners were forced to do everything in their power to preserve their lives or else perish. Primo Levi was a law-abiding scholar before entering the Lager and was well-adjusted to communities built upon mutually beneficial systems. However, upon becoming a Häftling, he quickly learned that in the concentration camps a “man is bound to pursue his own ends by all possible means, while he who errs but once pays dearly,”. Although theft and deception might have been dishonorable and held in disdain prior to his imprisonment, Primo Levi’s new station in life made every morsel of food and scrap of

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