Structure

Table of contents

Structure

The novel The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne is divided into 20 chapters and is similar to a drama. The author himself, however, describes his work as a fable.

In chapters 1 to 8, the reader is introduced to the plot. We get to know the main character Bruno and all the other important characters who are involved in the story. In addition, the reader learns how the individual characters are connected to each other and what possible conflicts could arise. Furthermore, the time and place are also described. The novel takes place during World War II, initially in Nazi Germany, specifically Berlin, but then in Auschwitz, Poland.

In chapters 9 to 17, the conflict develops further, as Bruno gets to know Shmuel. Their friendship is officially forbidden. But Bruno does not know that at first. For him, Shmuel is just a boy his age, who could thus be a possible playmate. That is why they meet regularly. Since both boys keep the friendship secret, none of the other characters can intervene. When Bruno denies his friendship with Shmuel in front of Kotler and the latter is beaten by Kotler because of it, the plot could have taken a different course. But since Bruno apologizes to Shmuel and Shmuel forgives him, the friendship persists. In these chapters, therefore, the impending ca...

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