Schindler’s List (1993)

Schindler’s List (1993) Trailer

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dwfIf1WMhgc

My heart went out to all the Jews who had to undergo such torment and cruelty during the Holocaust. My heart burned with anger to see such violence and evil coming from other fellow human beings. And my heart aches to know that this is not fiction.

Many questions swirled in my head as I watched the film… Why didn’t any Germans rebel against this idea? How can they see something like this as just and necessary? How is it they are desensitized to such violence? Why does it seem that killing a fellow human being is no different than killing a fly?

Dehumanization

Dehumanization is “a psychological process whereby opponents view each other as less than human and thus not deserving of moral consideration”.

Basically what that means is this:

  1. 1.      A have no problem killing a mosquito, fly, chicken etc.
  2. 2.      A sees B as one belonging in the same category as a mosquito, fly, chicken etc.
  3. 3.      A has no problem killing B

Even knowing that dehumanization is one of the reasons behind human cruelty does not make me feel better about how people can generate such hatred toward an individual or community enough to kill.

Many articles were written about this so if you’re interested, refer to the following links as I will be sharing and elaborating one other factor which I noticed instead.

The Lucifer Effect

http://www.lucifereffect.com/dehumanization.htm

Dehumanization

http://www.beyondintractability.org/bi-essay/dehumanization

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Something else I noticed…

I’ve noticed that there is a similarity between the reason behind the hatred of the Nazis and Ku Klux Klan toward the Jews and minority groups. Fear.

In both instances, the Jews and the minority groups were foreigners who managed to earn a good living in an alien country. Though both came with ‘nothing’ but they managed to open businesses, and were even more ‘successful’ than the locals. This is where fear strikes the hearts of the locals.

In those cases, the Germans and Whites were afraid that the foreigners (Jews & minority groups) would look down on them and be superior to them. They want to regain control of the situation and to ‘show who’s boss’. They are jealous of the achievements of the foreigners…

This is a pattern which I noticed that is consistent throughout history where one race is killing another. This reminded me of a time, very long ago, where even the Egyptians tried to annihilate the  Israelites because they are aliens who appeared to be a threat because they are prospering in their country.

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Overall, a heart breaking film which everyone must watch before they die. Besides being a significant historical event, I would surely recommend this to everyone (18 years above) as this film would definitely make a person question about morality, one’s sense of justice, and what constitutes evil.

The Real Oskar Schindler

Before I close, I would like to salute Oskar Schindler, the man who sold his possessions to save as many Jews as he could at that moment in time…not an easy thing to do…especially when you are a German.  

 

Reference

Diamond, S. A. (1996). Anger, madness, and the daimonic. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press. Retrieved from http://www.depth-psychotherapy-network.com/Professional_Section/Professional_Articles/The_Psychology_of_Evil_by_Stephen_Diamond/The_Psychology_of_Evil_Diamond.htm

Presentation by Zimbardo himself

http://www.cato.org/event.php?eventid=4894

“The Real Oskar Schindler”

http://www.writing.upenn.edu/~afilreis/Holocaust/steinhouse.html

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