Essay, Research Paper: Diary Of Anne Frank

World Literature

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Journeying back to the early nineteenth century, when Nazi forces occupied
Germany during World War II, the lives of those living in this territory was
spent in constant fear and anxiety. The Diary of Anne Frank leads readers
through the harsh times of a family trying to escape imprisonment in
concentration camps by Nazi soldiers, where death was almost certain. Born on
June 12, 1929, Anne Frank was a German-Jewish teenager who was forced to go into
hiding during the Holocaust. She and her family, along with four others, spent
25 months during World War II in an annex of rooms above her father's office in
Amsterdam, the Netherlands. During the two years in hiding which Anne refers to
as "a time when the ideals are being shattered and destroyed, when the
worst side of human nature predominates, when every one has come to doubt truth,
justice and God (pg.327)." Anne kept a diary that was given to her by her
father, Otto Frank, on her birthday. Between June 1942 and August 1944, from
Anne's thirteenth birthday until shortly after her fifteenth birthday, Anne
recorded her feelings, her emotions, and her thoughts, as well as the events
that happened to her. "…[I]deas, dreams, and cherished hopes rise within
us only to meet the horrible truth and be shattered…yet in spite of everything
I still believe that people are really good at heart (pg. 327)." The diary
is an accurate record of the way Anne grows up and matures, in the unfortunate
situation she found herself. Given the circumstances in which the novel is
written Anne gave a very vivid description of her surroundings and the feelings
she encountered throughout her ordeal. The novel displays the grief and
frustration that is experienced throughout the time spent in hiding. The
emotions of the situation are captured in the text and gives validity to the
pain and frustration encountered. Despite the amusing and enlightening side of
the diary, that documents the process of her adolescence, it also provides a
vividly terrifying description of what it was like to be Jewish hiding during
the time the Nazis sought to kill all the Jews in Europe. After two years of
living in the "secret annex", behind a bookcase, and having to be
extremely quite during the day so that the workers in the office and warehouse
below could not hear them the family was captured. The betrayal of Anne and her
family to the Nazis and their placement under arrest lead to their deportation
to concentration camps. In an entry on August 1, 1944, Anne confides to her
diary an analysis of her situation. She concludes that her behavior has been a
front during her years in hiding to help her cope with the people surrounding
her. Nine months after her arrest, Anne wrote that "…if only there were
no other people in the world (pg.331)." The writings give Anne's thought
wishful pretense that if no one else were in the world, that the pain and
suffering would end. Anne gives readers a sense of truth and honesty about her
situation that allows the reader to experience her life as a stubborn,
touchingly vulnerable teenager who one minute is in love with the world and the
next detached. This book is an extraordinary piece of work written by a young
woman finding her way in captivity. Anne was an immensely gifted writer and a
person of great sensitivity. She shows her depth through emotions as well as by
absolving the feeling of others and communicating them through writing. Anne's
true personality is brought to life on every page and allows the reader to feel
as though they actually know her. Whether enthralled in the heights of ecstasy
over her budding fascination with Peter Van Dann, another teen hiding in the
"annex", or drowning in the depths of despair over her life in hiding,
Anne would always confide her private thoughts and interest in her diary. Anne's
vivid writing allows the reader to experience second hand what it was like to be
a teenage Jewish girl confined to an inside world with little resources except
necessities to survive. The detail in which her story is told gives light to the
talents and emotions a young mind experienced as she deals with traumatic
situations. For its insights into the life of a German-Jewish child living in
Germany during Nazi occupation, The Diary of Anne Franks, offers a vivid,
realistic view of how a family tries to escape Nazi concentration camps. Anne's
ability to communicate her private thoughts engulfing the total emotions of the
situations gives the book a human side often missed in recounts of history. The
reader experiences the gripping details of a family and a child dealing with
extraordinary situations as they try to survive in hiding. Thanks to the
carelessness of Nazi soldiers taking Anne and her family into custody the
literary world was given the opportunity to experience captivity of a young
woman through her own eyes.

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