Elie Wiesel and the Politics of Moral Leadership, by Mark Chmiel

The 1960 publication of Elie Wiesel's memoir, Night, marked a major turning point in the American consciousness of what we now call the Holocaust. A man of faith angry with God's and the Allies' absence from Auschwitz, Wiesel created a vision of meaning that stressed not only remembrance but also the moral duty to act against present-day enormities. Yet in a world replete with repression and plagued by outbreaks of genocide, how, when and for whom should one act? These questions have vexed everyone who has a social conscience. So have the contradictions, ambiguities and unintended consequences that so often attend the translation of moral imperative into concrete policy.

 

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