Wednesday, April 16, 2008
In Tadeusz Borowski's Ladies and Gentlement, to the Gas Chamber, the narrator states the story in a matter of fact fashion. By using this tone, it seems as he is detached from the gravity of the concentration camps, and that he has become numb to the mass killings occurring around him. There is also a sense of sarcasm in his tone. The second line of the story, as we discussed in class, really exemplifies the narrator's tone, when he says, "True, we had already passed through the delousing process and received our clothing back from the tanks filled with a dilution of cyclone in water which so excellently poisoned lice in clothing and people in the gas chambers." By starting the sentence with "true," we get the sense that he is simply saying this is what happened. He also uses the word "excellent" to describe the dilution of the cyclone, which is the extermination gas. Of course the gas is not excellent, but by using this word he distances himself from the reality of the horrific situation.