Edited by Gerald Boerner
I first read Anne Frank’s diary while taking second year German in college. This was the German version! I believe that this made the impact of this reading even more meaningful. As the German phrases, with their precision of meaning, yielded their richness of meaning. When this is coupled with the fact that the diary was written by a 15 year old girl hiding from the Nazis in occupied Amsterdam..
One can only wonder what she was going through each day. But wait! we do know what she was thinking because she recorded it in here diary; that diary was retrieved and revealed to the world by her father returned from Auschwitz after the war. He then shared this intimate account of little Anne’s experience in that small set of attic rooms… GLB
These Introductory Comments are copyrighted:
Copyright©2012 — Gerald Boerner — All Rights Reserved
[ 1676 Words ]
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.
After being betrayed to the Nazis, Anne, her family, and the others living with them were arrested and deported to Nazi concentration camps. In March of 1945, nine months after she was arrested, Anne Frank died of typhus at Bergen-Belsen. She was fifteen years old.
Her diary, saved during the war by one of the family’s helpers, Miep Gies, was first published in 1947. Today, her diary has been translated into 67 languages and is one of the most widely read books in the world. (Anne Frank Web Site)
Quotations Related to Anne Frank:
“Think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy.”
— Anne Frank
“Despite everything, I believe that people are really good at heart.”
— Anne Frank
“Laziness may appear attractive, but work gives satisfaction.”
— Anne Frank
“Boys will be boys. And even that wouldn’t matter if only we could prevent girls from being girls.”
— Anne Frank
“How true Daddy’s words were when he said: all children must look after their own upbringing. Parents can only give good advice or put them on the right paths, but the final forming of a person’s character lies in their own hands.”
— Anne Frank
“And finally I twist my heart round again, so that the bad is on the outside and the good is on the inside, and keep on trying to find a way of becoming what I would so like to be, and could be, if there weren’t any other people living in the world.”
— Anne Frank
“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.”
— Anne Frank
“The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be.”
— Anne Frank
Anne Frank: One of Most Discussed Jewish Victims of the Holocaust…
Frank aspired to become a journalist, writing in her diary on Wednesday, 5 April 1944:
“I finally realized that I must do my schoolwork to keep from being ignorant, to get on in life, to become a journalist, because that’s what I want! I know I can write …, but it remains to be seen whether I really have talent …
And if I don’t have the talent to write books or newspaper articles, I can always write for myself. But I want to achieve more than that. I can’t imagine living like Mother, Mrs. van Daan and all the women who go about their work and are then forgotten. I need to have something besides a husband and children to devote myself to! …
I want to be useful or bring enjoyment to all people, even those I’ve never met. I want to go on living even after my death! And that’s why I’m so grateful to God for having given me this gift, which I can use to develop myself and to express all that’s inside me!
When I write I can shake off all my cares. My sorrow disappears, my spirits are revived! But, and that’s a big question, will I ever be able to write something great, will I ever become a journalist or a writer?” — Anne Frank
She continued writing regularly until her final entry of August 1, 1944.
The following is an excerpt of a New York Times article on the occasion of a reading by “Buddy Elias, Anne Frank’s closest living relative, reminisced about his cousin…”
“The occasion for Mr. Elias’s visit was a reading in downtown Manhattan from “Treasures From the Attic: The Extraordinary Story of Anne Frank’s Family,” by Mirjam Pressler, at the Anne Frank Center USA.
The book is based on a cache of 6,000 family letters, photographs and postcards unearthed in 2001 after the death of Helene Elias, Anne’s aunt and Buddy’s mother. Written in German, “Treasures From the Attic” was published in English translation this year.
Several of the letters in the book — found in the attic of Mrs. Elias’s house in Basel, Switzerland — are from Anne herself in the years before her family went into hiding in the “secret annex” of a narrow Dutch office building; others are from her father, Otto Frank, after he survived Auschwitz and tried to learn what befell the rest of his family.
These letters were unknown until the past decade, and some of them give the most vivid account of Anne’s time in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, where she died of typhus in March 1945…”
The Franks were liberal Jews, did not observe all of the customs and traditions of Judaism, and lived in an assimilated community of Jewish and non-Jewish citizens of various religions. Edith Frank was the more devout parent, while Otto Frank was interested in scholarly pursuits and had an extensive library; both parents encouraged the children to read.
On 13 March 1933, elections were held in Frankfurt for the municipal council, and Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Party won. Anti-Semitic demonstrations occurred almost immediately, and the Franks began to fear what would happen to them if they remained in Germany. Later that year, Edith and the children went to Aachen, where they stayed with Edith’s mother, Rosa Holländer. Otto Frank remained in Frankfurt, but after receiving an offer to start a company in Amsterdam, he moved there to organize the business and to arrange accommodations for his family. The Franks were among 300,000 Jews who fled Germany between 1933 and 1939.
Otto Frank began working at the Opekta Works, a company that sold fruit extract pectin, and found an apartment on the Merwedeplein (Merwede Square) in Amsterdam. By February 1934, Edith and the children had arrived in Amsterdam, and the two girls were enrolled in school—Margot in public school and Anne in a Montessori school. Margot demonstrated ability in arithmetic, and Anne showed aptitude for reading and writing. Her friend Hanneli Goslar later recalled that from early childhood, Frank frequently wrote, although she shielded her work with her hands and refused to discuss the content of her writing. The Frank sisters had highly distinct personalities, Margot being well-mannered, reserved, and studious, while Anne was outspoken, energetic, and extroverted.
In 1938 Otto Frank started a second company, Pectacon, which was a wholesaler of herbs, pickling salts, and mixed spices, used in the production of sausages. Hermann van Pels was employed by Pectacon as an advisor about spices. A Jewish butcher, he had fled Osnabrück in Germany with his family. In 1939 Edith’s mother came to live with the Franks, and remained with them until her death in January 1942.
In May 1940, Germany invaded the Netherlands, and the occupation government began to persecute Jews by the implementation of restrictive and discriminatory laws; mandatory registration and segregation soon followed. The Frank sisters were excelling in their studies and had many friends, but with the introduction of a decree that Jewish children could attend only Jewish schools, they were enrolled at the Jewish Lyceum. Anne became a friend of Jacqueline van Maarsen in the Lyceum. In April 1941 Otto Frank took action to prevent Pectacon from being confiscated as a Jewish-owned business. He transferred his shares in Pectacon to Johannes Kleiman and resigned as director. The company was liquidated and all assets transferred to Gies and Company, headed by Jan Gies. In December 1941 Frank followed a similar process to save Opekta. The businesses continued with little obvious change and their survival allowed Frank to earn a minimal income, but sufficient to provide for his family.
Anne Frank Speaks and Holocaust Background…
Please take time to further explore more about Anne Frank, The
Diary of a Young Girl, Betrayal of Anne Frank, Bergen-Belsen
Concentration Camp, Anne Frank House, Anne Frank Tree by
accessing the Wikipedia articles referenced below. In most cases,
the text in the body of this post has been selectively excerpted from
the articles; footnotes and hyperlinks have been removed for readability…
Background information is from Wikipedia and other articles:
Wikipedia: Anne Frank…
New York Times: A Dear Cousin Recalls His Childhood Playmate, Anne Frank…
New York Times: Revisiting Adolescence in the Secret Annex…
Anne Frank Web Site: Who is Anne Frank?…
Brainy Quote: Anne Frank Quotes…
Other Posts on related Topics:
Prof. Boerner’s Explorations: Diary of Anne Frank: First Published in English…
Prof. Boerner’s Explorations:Dietrich Bonhoeffer: Dying for his Christian Duty…
Prof. Boerner’s Explorations: Auschwitz Liberated: International Holocaust Remembrance Day…