The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

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Grandmother Character Analysis

Nathalie, Bruno’s grandmother and Father’s mother, was a singer in her youth, before she married Grandfather. She is very dramatic, and still loves to sing. Each Christmas, she devises a play for herself and the children, to be performed at their holiday party. Grandmother opposes the Nazi party, and gets into a huge fight with Father when he accepts the new post at Auschwitz. They do not make up, and she dies while the family is away at Auschwitz.
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Grandmother Character Timeline in The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

The timeline below shows where the character Grandmother appears in The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Innocence and Ignorance  Theme Icon
Boundaries  Theme Icon
Family and Friendship  Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
...thinks, is the best part of the house, as well as the fact that his Grandmother and Grandfather live nearby. He privately wishes that instead of bringing along his twelve-year-old sister... (full context)
Chapter 5
Innocence and Ignorance  Theme Icon
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Family and Friendship  Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Complicity Theme Icon
...of his desk, and steps around it to shake Bruno’s hand. Father, unlike Mother or Grandmother, is not affectionate. Father tells Bruno he is proud of him for helping his mother... (full context)
Chapter 8
Innocence and Ignorance  Theme Icon
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...three best friends very much, the two people he misses the most from Berlin are Grandmother and Grandfather. Bruno’s grandparents live in a small flat “near the fruit and vegetable stalls,”... (full context)
Innocence and Ignorance  Theme Icon
Boundaries  Theme Icon
Nationalism  Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Complicity Theme Icon
...in and out of the house seemed to respect him more. Grandfather seemed proud, but Grandmother acted unimpressed. (full context)
Innocence and Ignorance  Theme Icon
Family and Friendship  Theme Icon
Nationalism  Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Complicity Theme Icon
Grandmother asks Father if there was something that went wrong when she was raising him, and... (full context)
Innocence and Ignorance  Theme Icon
Boundaries  Theme Icon
Family and Friendship  Theme Icon
Nationalism  Theme Icon
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Complicity Theme Icon
...most of the voices are muffled. After a few minutes, the door slams open, and Grandmother comes out, saying that she is ashamed of her son. Father calls after her and... (full context)
Chapter 16
Innocence and Ignorance  Theme Icon
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Nationalism  Theme Icon
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Complicity Theme Icon
...The family returns to their old house for two days to attend the funeral of Grandmother, whom Bruno had not seen since their last Christmas pageant. Father is particularly sad, since... (full context)
Chapter 17
Innocence and Ignorance  Theme Icon
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...and he doesn’t know how he feels about that—he can hardly remember his friends there, Grandmother had passed away, and he never hears from Grandfather, whom Father says has gone senile.... (full context)
Chapter 19
Innocence and Ignorance  Theme Icon
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Family and Friendship  Theme Icon
...into them anyway. They remind Bruno of the costumes he used to dress in for Grandmother’s plays. With both of them dressed in the striped pajamas, Bruno and Shmuel look almost... (full context)