How effective was the author at developing the theme? What was his purpose and did he accomplish it?

Our groups theme was used a couple times in the book. I believe that our theme was somewhat essential to the book because the characters are constantly changing and obeying what others, mostly Hitler, are telling them to do. The author was really effective in developing our theme in the book. “Mother,’ he insisted. ‘What’s going on? Are we moving (Boyne, 2007, p.2)?” And that is exactly what they did. Bruno, Mother, Father, and Gretel all moved from their home in Berlin to Out-With. Another example of how they had to change was of how soldiers would come in and out of their house as if they owned the place. Bruno had to obey and not interrupt Mother when she was talking but he disobeyed her anyway. “You’ll have to say goodbye to your friends for the time being,’ said Mother. ‘Although I’m sure you’ll see them again in time. And don’t you interrupt your mother when she’s talking, please,’ she added (Boyne, 2007, p. 7).” Another example of when they had to obey was to obey Hitler. Since Father was a soldier, Hitler ordered him to move him and his family to Out-With to be closer to the concentration camp of Auschwitz. Ever since they moved to Out-With, there has been soldiers guarding the house and the soldiers have been moving freely inside the house. Bruno also has to change because he had to move away from his friends, Daniel, Martin, and Karl, and he doesn’t have anyone to play with, making him bored. Until he found Shmuel and could talk to him whenever he could, but they didn’t get to touch until they shook each others hands. Also, Gretel changed in the book. Gretel used to like dolls. She had many dolls she would arrange then rearrange. But after being at Out-With for a while, Gretel changed from liking dolls to not liking them, until she finally put pictures up in her room about the Fatherland and the war.

        The author’s purpose for putting obedience and conformity into the book was to show all of the changes Bruno and his family went through and of how they all had to obey to what they were supposed to do, like to obey Hitler in moving to Out-With. I believe the author did accomplish what he wanted to accomplish with our theme of obedience and conformity. Without the author accomplishing obedience and conformity, the book may have been the same throughout the book and would have had no rules.

~Regan and Group


Explain what Mother means when she says, “we don’t have the luxury of thinking” (pg. 13). How does this statement reflect the theme of obedience and conformity? Use additional examples from the story to support your answer.

When said, “we don’t have the luxury of thinking” told by Mother, this means that Mother, Bruno, and Gretel all aren’t allowed to make their own decisions, so some people, Father, made all the decisions for them. Mother, Gretel, and Bruno (mostly Bruno) didn’t want to move to this new house outside of Berlin but they had no choice, they were practically “forced” to move to Poland. Mother and Father probably should’ve talked about leaving and moving to this different house in Poland but Father didn’t want to say no to the Fury, Hitler. So Father went ahead and didn’t ask Mother, Bruno, and Gretel what they thought (“we don’t have the luxury to think”).

This statement that has been made reflects to the theme of obedience and conformity because Mother, Father, Bruno, and Gretel all had to change and start living in their new house in Poland and change with all the ways their family is changing. Like how Father is now to be called Commandant. And also Mother, Bruno, and Gretel had to obey Father and they all had to obey Hitler’s orders to move because Father was a soldier for the Nazi’s and Hitler wanted him to move closer to the concentration camps, probably so it was easier for Father to get there quicker. Some examples supporting my statement would include: “When they first saw their new house Bruno’s eyes opened wide, his mouth made the shape of an O and his arms stretched out at his sides once again.  Everything about it seemed to be the exact opposite of their old home and he couldn’t believe that they were really going to live there.” Another example includes: ” ‘But what about school?’ said Bruno, interrupting her, a thing he knew he was not supposed to do but which he felt he would be forgiven for on this occasion.”


What is propaganda? How is propaganda used to “sell” people on a viewpoint?

  1. Propaganda is a term that means writing that is one-sided, biased, the spreading of ideas and information, rumors, and are often misleading.  Propaganda could also be considered an opinion.
  2. Sometimes, propaganda is used to “sell” people on a viewpoint by different articles such as newspapers, magazines, books, media, art, music, etc. and the propaganda that is used in those specific articles would try to lead the reader to that one side that the author is trying to get you to join.  The hope for the author would be that that one reader would tell his or her friends about it and try to get their certain friends on “board” so that the author could spread his or her propaganda around the world.  The goal in the end for the author who is trying to spread the propaganda would be that every person in the whole country, or even the whole world, would join his or her group (which would be highly unlikely).  Media would probably be the biggest propaganda “seller” above all because mostly all people use media every single day. Whether you watch TV, use an iPod, have a phone, use a laptop, etc. you would be using media.  Music and art would be another big propaganda “seller” because in music and art, you can express your feelings.