Historical Context Hitler, wwii, and the Jewish Holocaust



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ITZHAK STERN

  • Manipulative & smart: He was the first person to know and recognize Schindler as a good person – the good German. Even though we know now that Stern’s intentions were good, they were also used for very personal reasons. He manipulated Oskar’s goodness in a sense. Stern knew exactly what he was doing when he did this.

  • Good judge of character: Especially when it came to Oskar

  • Extremely loyal: When it came to Oskar, Stern never faltered. Once he planted the seed in Oskar’s mind, Stern never gave up. Oskar trusted Stern deeply and because of this told Stern many Nazi secrets and plans. In return, Stern was very loyal to Oskar and stood by him throughout the Holocaust and the rest of his life. In the end Stern realized he put his trust in the right person and helped Schindler construct his list (in partial). He presented Oskar with a ring engraved with “He who saves a single life saves the world entire.” Stern truly thought Schindler did this. Stern vowed to ensure that Schindler was not prosecuted for simply being a Nazi.

  • Hard worker

  • He was the only person Oskar implicitly trusted

  • He was one of the ones (including Genia) who made Oskar think Jews were human



AMON GOETH – Evil incarnate


  • Cruel & thoughtless: Without a doubt, one of the world’s most evil human beings. He didn’t think twice about killing Jews for the Nazi cause. He believed in Hitler and prosecuted the Jews because of it. In the case of Helen Hirsch, he repeatedly beat her up but did not kill her; instead he enjoyed watching her suffer. He laughed when Oskar gave the Jews water. He shot hard workers from his balcony. When you saw Goeth, “you saw death.”

  • Loyal friend: Even though he was often called the devil, Goeth was a loyal friend to Schindler. He trusted him, admired him, and even accepted his bribes of alcohol. Goeth also was a somewhat loyal friend to Schindler – he held a high opinion of him and could have reported him but didn’t (watering trains incident). Even when Goeth suspected there was a change in Oskar, he never said anything to anyone else. It wasn’t until Goeth was questioned by his superiors that he tried to sell Oskar out.

  • Powerful, influential, & abused his authority: it is obvious from the very beginning that Goeth is a high ranking Nazi. He was someone who exhibited extreme authority wherever he went. He used his power and influence to get whatever he wanted and to do whatever he wanted. Like Schindler, he used and abuse his position within the Nazi system to his own end.

  • Loved murder

  • Capable of hiding things – false appearances






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