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For Those Who Think That They Are Brave This May Test Them,
By A Customer
This review is from: The Pianist (Hardcover)
A lot is said and written about the Warsaw ghetto and the awful life of Jews in Warsaw during WWII. Usually the picture is impersonal. Terrible things are happening to Jews as a race but, what is happening to individuals?
Few people have endured wartime terror personally and look at the happenings of wartime Warsaw from a historical point of view with little feeling of what terrible things happened to individuals.
Wladyslav Szpilman gives the reader greater understanding of the despicable experiences of war through his graphic descriptions of his own life in hiding from the German occupiers. It is only because of his own self discipline that he survives.
Unusually a contribution to his survival is made by a German officer who is uncharacteristically humane and this, too, adds to the incredibility of the tale.
We are lucky to have such examples of bravery and humanity to give us hope that in similar circumstances we would have had the courage of a Szpilman or the mercy and sympathy of the German.
This episode in Warsaw serves, once again, to illustrate how wastefully stupid man is to let his nature turn so sour when, in the end, there will be survivors and there will be heros and the efforts to snub out man's better instincts will fail. That Wladyslav Spilman goes on to a distiguished musical career is the fitting rebuttal to all the hate that Hitler spread so uselessly and fortunately, fruitlessly.
If you are curious about how you might deal with supreme adversity you might read this book and consider whether you are of he same mettle.
It would be interesting to see how film makers would deal with this story.