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Ashten Bergstedt
10/21 Discussion
Fri Oct 21, 2011 1:27pm
150.216.172.56

The Shawl by Cynthia Ozick was a very powerful story. My reaction was one of deep sadness because the story is so lifelike. Just the thought of someone going through the pain of what the protagonists endured is enough to break your heart.

I feel so bad for Rosa, the mother, because she had to try and conceal her own little fifteen month old child, Magda, whom she couldn't feed herself. I am sure admitting to the fact that you don't have the ability to healthily raise your own child is a morose situation, but when you can not even step out of a line to allow the baby to possibly live a happier life; it is completely tragic. But of course, the tragedy for Rosa did not stop there. The little baby Magda ended up being discovered by a German officer and she was mercilessly killed right in front of Rosa. This part of the story shocked me greatly and it was probably the most difficult part of the story for me to read.

I have mixed feelings about the other protagonist, Stella. With knees that "look like tumors", it is easy to see that she is a young girl who could easily be corrupted by hunger and contempt. However, despite the sympathy I feel for her and her situation, I can not help but feel anger towards her because of her eager willingness to try and eat Magda. Also, I believe that Stella is ultimately responsible for Magda's death, because she stole Magda's shawl; and she was fully aware that if she did this, Magda would likely be found and killed.

Overall, I really liked the story. Yes the story was a depressing one, but the fact that the text was able to kept my attention and immerse me in the story is a very positive trait.The author did a fantastic job describing a miserable setting and portraying how horrible of a setting a concentration camp is. Everyone knows that the Holocaust was a tragic occurrence, but stories like The Shawl allow us to get a deeper look into the event and discover how sad personal situations ended up being.

  • 10/21 Discussion - Andy Bates, Thu Oct 20 6:27pm
    What is your reaction to the story "The Shawl"? What did you like or dislike? How well do you think it captured the situation the family was in?
    • Discussion Board 10/21 - Bethany Alder, Fri Oct 21 4:36pm
      My reaction was that I started crying four paragraphs into it. Cynthia Ozick, the author, certainly has the gift of evoking strong emotion in her readers. I find it really difficult to use the words... more
      • Re: Discussion Board 10/21 - Anonymous, Tue Jan 8 9:29pm
        "Magda lived to walk" portrays hopelessness because after she walked, she would die.
    • Discussion 10/21 - Kurt McPherson, Fri Oct 21 4:11pm
      I was kind of shocked by the whole story. The Shawl is all about two jewish girls carrying a german baby in a shawl as they are escorted to a concentration camp. The star that is sewn on their... more
    • 10/21 - Taylor Stevenson, Fri Oct 21 4:02pm
      My reaction to “The Shawl” was that of sadness. The details were so specific that you could picture nearly everything Ozick describes in your mind. The line that caught my attention was about the... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Nam Thai, Fri Oct 21 3:45pm
      I thought that the story “The Shawl” was very interesting. I liked the story for a couple reasons. I enjoyed this story because I have always had a liking for holocaust stories, such as “Night” and... more
    • "The Shawl" - Tiffany LeMay, Fri Oct 21 3:44pm
      Personally I thought that the short story “The Shawl” was going to melt my heart extremely but that’s not the effect I ended up getting. The first time that I read it, it was very difficult to... more
    • Re: 10/21 Discussion - casey olevsky, Fri Oct 21 3:30pm
      My reaction to the story “The Shawl” was very negative. I thought the content of the story was very weird and left me somewhat confused. I thought it was an interesting topic and a very original... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Brandan Murrell, Fri Oct 21 3:26pm
      The story “The Shawl” was extremely depressing to say the least. I can’t say that I liked the story just because of the topic and what happened in the story but I loved the way the author, Cynthia... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Kelly Phillips, Fri Oct 21 3:19pm
      "The Shawl" was a very depressing yet realistic tale of the conditions which victims of the Holocaust lived in back in the earlier 1900s. I have always found the Holocaust to be one of the most... more
    • discussion 10/21 - kai chatman, Fri Oct 21 3:14pm
      The Shawl” was a very sad story. Although I knew what the ending would be, I was very intrigued while reading it. I think the author did a very good jobi n showing what kind of situation they were... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Bowin Yem, Fri Oct 21 3:14pm
      I liked the Shawl because it was deep and thought provoking to the point that I had to read it twice to get a firm grasp of it. It was interesting how Magda had blond hair and blue eyes, the looks of ... more
    • Re: 10/21 Discussion - Jacob Evans, Fri Oct 21 3:05pm
      The Shawl Rosa, her infant daughter Magda, and her fourteen year old niece Stella are Polish Jews interned in a concentration camp -- "a place without pity" during World War II. Miraculously the... more
    • Discussion 10/21 - Katherine Faucette, Fri Oct 21 2:44pm
      I thought that “The Shawl” by Cynthia Ozick was a very emotional story. It was very, very sad yet I liked it. I felt so sorry for the family in the story. I can’t imagine the fear and pain that the... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Melissa Miller, Fri Oct 21 2:29pm
      When I think of the word “shawl” I think of the piece of cloth which is not cut clean and is made for a woman to carry around her shoulder for warmth [and sometimes for fashion]. This story did not... more
    • 10/21 discussion :) - Amanda Roy, Fri Oct 21 2:07pm
      Let me start out with saying wow…that was the saddest story I have ever read in my entire life. I don’t even know how to react to it. From the details in the story, one could gather that this took... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Ashten Bergstedt, Fri Oct 21 1:27pm
    • Online discussion 10-21 - Bea Breeden, Fri Oct 21 12:47pm
      This story was indeed very, very sad. I liked reading it but it was upsetting to me to see what they went through. However, the truth is that the holocaust was not a very happy time. That is the one... more
    • Re: 10/21 Discussion - Jennifer Emrey, Fri Oct 21 12:01pm
      Although this story was really sad and depressing, I still liked reading it. The author does a very good job at describing everything that is happening and it really painted a good picture of what... more
    • Oct. 21,2011 - Rosalyn Swain, Fri Oct 21 11:57am
      My reaction to the story was just shock. I was appalled by the fact that people actually went through this. This mother and her two daughter one which is 14 and who is jealous of the infant because... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Haley Currie, Fri Oct 21 11:45am
      I did not like the story “The Shawl”. It was written well, however I did not like the storyline at all. It was too depressing and sad. This story didn’t have any positivity or uplifting moments... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Heather Burney, Fri Oct 21 11:15am
      My reaction to “The Shawl” was that it was tremendously sad but also tremendously good. I really loved this story. I loved the descriptions and the way the author seemed to paint an extremely graphic ... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Luke Fiorini, Fri Oct 21 10:24am
      The story "The shawl" was one of the saddest stories that I have ever read. I could not imagine being in this situation, let alone having to take care of a baby when you don’t even have enough food... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Steven Byrd, Fri Oct 21 10:08am
      English 1000 10/21 Discussion After reading “The Shawl”, I was really unsure of how to feel. My reaction to the story was a sense of confusion, pain, sympathy, and shock. There were a variety of... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Travis Hayes, Fri Oct 21 9:16am
      In the story the Shawl I liked it because it was a non-fiction story informing the audience of the historical time of the holocaust. It tells about a mother, Rosa, her newborn child, Magda and Rosa’s ... more
    • 10/21 Discussion - Dakota Bunn, Fri Oct 21 9:05am
      The story Shawl written by Cynthia Ozick was not one I liked. No story or movie or anything can make me cry or feel bad, I grew up where we had to read about the Holocaust and many events of slaves... more
    • Discussion 10/21 - Logan Justice, Fri Oct 21 9:02am
      My initial reaction to the story “The Shawl” was that it was a very depressing story. The fact that a child, or anyone for that matter, had to suffer like that is just absolutely terrible and... more
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