Elie Wiesel

Elie Wiesel, 1928–, American writer, writing in French, b. Sighet, Romania. At 16 he was imprisoned in Nazi concentration camps at Auschwitz and Buchenwald, where his family perished. After the war, he studied at the Sorbonne. In the 1950s he was a correspondent for Israeli, American, and French newspapers. After living in France and Israel, he settled in the United States in 1956 and became a citizen in 1963.

Wiesel's novels, plays, retellings of biblical stories, and collections of Hasidic tales have focused on the importance of keeping the memory of the Holocaust alive. The autobiographical novel Night (1958) recounts the horrors he witnessed as a death camp inmate; it and two subsequent novels about concentration camp survivors, Dawn (1960) and The Accident (1961), comprise the Night Trilogy. Later works include A Jew Today (1978), The Fifth Son (1985), and The Judges (2002). For his efforts on behalf of other oppressed peoples, he won the 1986 Nobel Peace Prize.

See his memoirs All Rivers Run to the Sea (1995) and And the Sea Is Never Full (1999); his Memoir in Two Voices (with F. Mitterrand, 1996); studies by R. M. Brown (1984) and M. Berenbaum (1987).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2014, The Columbia University Press.

Selected full-text books and articles on this topic

Student Companion to Elie Wiesel
Sanford Sternlicht.
Greenwood Press, 2003
The Worlds of Elie Wiesel: An Overview of His Career and His Major Themes
Jack Kolbert.
Susquehanna University Press, 2001
Anthology of Holocaust Literature
Jacob Glatstein; Israel Knox; Samuel Margoshes; Mordecai Bernstein; Adah B. Fogel.
Jewish Publication Society of America, 1969
Librarian’s tip: "The Death Train" by Elie Wiesel begins on p. 3
European Memories of the Second World War
Charles Burdett; Claire Gorrara; Helmut Peitsch.
Berghahn Books, 1999
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 12 "Reviewing Memory: Wiesel, Testimony and Self Reading"
The Contemporary Novel in France
William Thompson.
University Press of Florida, 1995
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 11 "Elie Wiesel"
Perspectives on the Holocaust: Essays in Honor of Raul Hilberg
James S. Pacy; Alan P. Wertheimer.
Westview Press, 1995
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 8 "Elie Wiesel and Primo Levi"
Human Rights: The Essential Reference
Carol Devine; Carol Rae Hansen; Ralph Wilde; Hilary Poole.
Oryx Press, 1999
Librarian’s tip: "Elie Wiesel: Author and Humanitarian" begins on p. 222
Writing and the Holocaust
Berel Lang.
Holmes & Meier, 1988
Librarian’s tip: Discussion of Elie Wiesel begins on p. 21
From the Unthinkable to the Unavoidable: American Christian and Jewish Scholars Encounter the Holocaust
Carol Rittner; John K. Roth.
Praeger Publishers, 1997
Librarian’s tip: Includes discussion of Elie Wiesel in multiple chapters
Voicing the Void: Muteness and Memory in Holocaust Fiction
Sara R. Horowitz.
State University of New York Press, 1997
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 6 "Muted Chords: From Victim to Survivor"
Christianity, Tragedy, and Holocaust Literature
Michael R. Steele.
Greenwood Press, 1995
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 2 "Tragedy and the Holocaust"
Dictionary of the Holocaust: Biography, Geography, and Terminology
Eric Joseph Epstein; Philip Rosen.
Greenwood Press, 1997
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