Words … words are things we use and hear literally all of the time, although they give us the power to communicate, they are certainly not as influential or manipulative as they have the ability to be. Nazi Germany is a place where the use of the immense power of combined letters is perfected. In the novel, The Book Thief by Markus Zusakwords are used to create goodness, comfort, and sanity in a time of war. When wielded by the correct person, a strong vocabulary lso has the chance to manipulate any man into changing his mind completely.
The Power of Words There is no better way to sum up this profound and moving story than to describe its most profound and moving metaphor: He uses these newly clean pages to write a new story about the bond of shared experience between himself and the family's adopted teenage girl, Liesel.
He gives his story to Liesel as a gift, thereby deepening their bond and cementing the central message of the novel: They can be both damning and brilliant. And they have equal gravity to be either massively destructive like Nazi ideologyor redemptive, enlightening and life-giving like Max's homemade book.
Liesel, who is the book thief of the title, had already had an inkling of this magnetic draw of words — even before she knew how to read. Her first book theft occurred the day she buried her younger brother on the way to their foster home; she stole a guide to grave digging that fell out of one of the gravedigger's pockets.
She simply wanted a way to remember not just her dead brother, but how she was feeling at that moment of his burial. After she arrives at her foster home near Munich, her adopted father Hans teaches her to read and she begins to understand more deeply how life-altering words and stories can be.
I'd heard so much about this book before finally picking it up, and I'd always been worried about how much I would really connect with a supposedly "young adult" coming-of-age tale about a teenage girl in Nazi Germany. Let's make one thing clear: Whoever decided to label or market this is as a "young adult novel" made a massive miscalculation.
If the YA label is your hesitancy as well, please be assured you can discard it out of hand. I'm not sure where the line between young and adult fiction is, but this belongs on the shelf next to the best of any kind of literature.
My second hesitation was the Death-as-narrator gimmick — I was worried how well it'd work. Death's voice in this novel is unlike anything I've ever read.
It's poetic and imaginative, but straightforward and serious at the same time. In an interview published at the end of the novel, Zusak reveals that he'd started the novel with Death as the heartless soul-reaper you'd expect.
But, he says, the story wasn't working.
So he created an omniscient Death who simultaneously sympathizes with and is terrified of humanity. Finally, approximately 99 percent of people who talk about this book do it in such glowing terms that I had that typical too-high expectations hesitancy.
I may not have loved this book as much as many, but I did thoroughly enjoy it. It moved me and it made me think, two hallmarks of a great book.
Have you read The Book Thief? If so, I'd love to hear your thoughts, but also there's one question in the "for discussion" section at the end on which I'd be interested to hear your take — what is ironic about Liesel's obsession for stealing books?
If you haven't read the book, it is highly, highly recommended. Posted by Greg Zimmerman at 9:Power of Language One option: In The Book Thief, words have the power to both destroy and save lives. Examine how characters in the novel (for example, Liesel, Max, Ilsa Hermann, Hitler, Rosa and/or Hans) use words to destroy and to save.
Get free homework help on Markus Zusak's The Book Thief: book summary, chapter summary and analysis, quotes, and character analysis courtesy of CliffsNotes. Markus Zusak's The Book Thief, set in Germany during World War II, follows young Liesel Meminger as she struggles with the loss of her mother and brother and must go to live with foster parents, Hans and Rosa Hubermann.
Liesel is the book thief.
At the start of her story, Liesel is without words and cannot read. She understands that there is great power in words, though, and she hungers for them. This is Max, writing in his scrap book, expressing how it felt to see the stars for the first time since he's come to Himmel Street.
In fact, he hasn't seen anything of the outside world.
The passage is an . The Book Thief is also a novel about the power of words. Adolf Hitler and his Nazi Party rose to power in no small part through the sheer power of words, delivered through violent speeches, propaganda, and Hitler's seminal book Mein Kampf.
Transcript of The Power Of Words - The Book Thief Liesel's Use of Words the book is a symbol of her mother and brother, giving her a sense of safety and allowing for a .