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Word Count: 949
Yevtushenkos Babi Yar- Babi Yar a poem written by Yevgeny Yevtushenko tells the story of the Nazi invasion into a small part of Russia in which throughout the duration of World War II over one-hundred thousand Jews Gypsies and Russian POWs were brutally murdered However what is unique about this particular perspective is that the narrator is not a Jew but a mere observer who is aghast at the atrocities that took place during the Holocaust It is through allusions as well as other literary devices that Yevtushenko elucidates caustically the absurdities of the hatred that caused the Holocaust in addition to the narrators identification with the Jews and their history of oppression Perhaps the most effective literary device used in Babi Yar is the allusion The first clear allusion seen in the poem is the one concerning Egyptline 6 This reference harks back to the Jews enslavement in Egypt before they become a nation In line 7 the narrator makes reference to how so many Jews perished on the cross The reason for these initial allusions in the first section is clear Yevtushenko is establishing the history of the Jewish people being one of oppression prejudice and innocent victims The next illusion in the poem is a reference to the Dreyfus Affair a more modern display of irrational and avid anti-Semitism It is in the Dreyfus affair that an innocent man is accused of espionage and is sent to jail for more than ten years notwithstanding an overwhelming amount of evidence pointing to his innocence simply because he is a Jew Yevtushenko uses these allusions to lead up to his referral to a boy in Bielostok who is murdered by the Russian common-folk Clearly The narrator is teaching a lesson
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