Anne Frank wanted to become a writer or a journalist. Her diary has been published in over 70 languages and has had over 30 million copies published. Anne was born June 12, 1929 in Frankfurt, Germany.
With the Antisemitism that Hitler’s rise to power brought, she fled, with her father, mother and sister to Amsterdam.
The family tries to emigrate to England or the United States but are not successful. On September 1939 Germany invades Poland and World War ll begins. By May the following year Germany has occupied the Netherlands and regulations force Anne and her sister to attend a Jewish only school and their father Otto loses his business.
Anne’s sister is given notice to report to a work camp and the family goes into hiding in a secret entrance to Otto’s old business where they stay for 2 years. They receive some help for the office workers of Otto’s old company.
Just before they went into hiding (Picture of Hiding Place) Anne had a birthday and she received a diary. She begins immediately to write about their life and is encouraged to write more, with the broadcast she hears on a British radio station that encourages people to keep war diaries.
In August 1944 the family, and some who helped, are arrested and sent to Auschwitz. Miep Gies and Bep Voskuijl discover in the hiding place Anne’s diary and papers and take them for safe keeping.
Of the total of 8 people who were in hiding with the Frank family, Otto Frank is the only one that survives the war. After the war he goes back to Amsterdam hoping to learn if his daughters are alive and learns that both died of disease in the concentration camp. Miep Gies and Otto meet, and he is given his Anne’s diary and also given a place to stay for the next seven years.
The diary is a day to day account of Anne’s life and a search for identity. It is addressed with daily entries to “Dear Kitty” who seems to be an imaginary person Anne wants to confide in. In her writings she wonders about what type of person she is, and how she should feel about others who were suffering. She wonders why the Germans despise her for just being a Jew.
The writings are what you might expect from a teenager. What stands out is how positive she is despite all that is happening. At age 14 she made this entry: “Let me be myself and then I am satisfied. I know that I’m a woman, a woman with inward strength and plenty of courage.”
Her father is very moved by what he reads in the diary. He feels he has found a part of Anne that he didn’t know. In looking to find an overall message and purpose for the diary this quote seems to sum up her message. “The final forming of a person’s character lies in their own hands”. This, and the victory of good over evil, is really the message of her life.
“It's really a wonder that I haven't dropped all my ideals, because they seem so absurd and impossible to carry out. Yet I keep them, because in spite of everything, I still believe that people are really good at heart.”
“Think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy.”
“I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.”
“I don't think of all the misery, but of the beauty that still remains.”
“Because paper has more patience than people. ”
“Look at how a single candle can both defy and define the darkness.”
Last diary entry, Aug 1 1944, Dear Kitty
"Little bundle of contradictions" That's how I ended my last letter and that's how I'm going to begin this one. "A little bundle of contradictions" can you tell me exactly what it is? What does contradiction mean? Like so many words, it can mean two things, contradiction from without and from within."
The first is the ordinary "not giving in easily, always knowing best, getting in the last word," enfin, (in conclusion) all the unpleasant qualities for which I'm renowned. The second no one knows about about, that's my own secret."