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Literary Precedents for The Forgotten

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Literary Precedents

All of Wiesel's writings derive, to some extent, from biblical precedents; The Forgotten is no exception. The hardships faced by Elhanan may remind readers of tribulations encountered by Biblical characters such as Jonah and Job. Like Elhanan, Jonah fails in a serious obligation (in the case of Elhanan, it is his decision to refrain from aiding the wife of Zoltan, the Nyilas chief, who is being raped by Elhanan's friend, Itzik the Long). God punishes Elhanan for failing in his duty to intervene by taking away his memory (Alzheimer's Disease). Elhanan is reminiscent of Job in that he must weather several tragedies, such as the loss of his family, his wife, and ultimately, his mind.

Contracting Alzheimer's Disease is extremely painful for him because he prides himself on his memory, his ability to honor the memories of those who perished during the Holocaust. Like Job, Elhanan is an...

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This section contains 276 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Forgotten Study Guide
Copyrights
The Forgotten from Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction and Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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