Monday, September 14, 2009

Review: It Happened In Italy

It happened in Italy by Elizabeth Bettina tells two stories: the story of the Jews in Italy during World War II and the story of Elizabeth herself as she discovers the story of the Jews, bringing participants together again after many years. The Italians, unlike the Nazis, did not see a need for abusing the Jews they were to detain. Instead, the Jews in Italy were treated with humanity, reflecting the humanity of the Italians, and as a result, many Jews were saved in Italy.

The story was overall a good story. The biggest problem is the book spent too much time discussing Elizabeth Bettina's journey. I would have preferred more about the Jews in Italy. I had the problem of not being as concerned about her story. I wanted to hear the story of the Jews in Italy. While that story is still told, it is split up by Bettina's story. The story of the Jews is still a moving story. Many stories about the Jews show the inhumanity of their captors. This has led to the view that all of our enemies during World War II were pure evil. The story is more complicated than that. In Italy at least, the Jews were treated with civility, and many lives were saved. Humanity corrupted by sin is a complex thing, capable of extreme acts of evil and of good.

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