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Analysis Of Anne Franks Diary English Literature Essay

Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl takes place between June 12, 1942 and August 1, 1944 in Amsterdam, Holland. Specifically, it takes place in their “Secret Annex” which is hidden behind a bookcase in Mr. Van Daan and Mr. Frank’s office. The place is cramped with many people, and they must be very quiet so they do not blow their cover. There are workers working in the building where they are so any noise they make is a risk.

Characters

Anne Frank is the narrator of the book. She is a young, teenage girl of the Jewish faith. The story takes place during the holocaust, so Anne and her family are hiding in a “Secret Annex.” Anne was a very popular girl in school with both boys and girls. Wanting to be a writer when she grows up, Anne loves to read and write.

Margot Frank is Anne’s sister and three years older. She is quieter and more serious than Anne. Margot gets along better with their parents and becomes closer with Anne throughout the book.

Otto Frank is Anne and Margot’s dad. He is the one who arranges their hiding spot in the “Secret Annex.” Mr. Frank is modest and quiet with a very close relationship with Anne. He teaches her most of her subjects including Algebra and English.

Edith Frank, Anne and Margot’s mother, has a horrible relationship with Anne. She does not fit the image of what a mother should be according to Anne. It seems as though she always takes Margot’s side which really ticks Anne off.

Peter Van Daan is the son of another family hiding with the Franks. He appears to be boring at first to Anne, but soon enough they fall in love. Peter is a bit older than Anne, but that doesn’t stop them from having a relationship. He starts to cling to her and Anne finds out he does not like religion. Both of these are reasons why Anne eventually dumps him. He does not even make the smallest attempt to change his ways which disgusts Anne.

Petronella Van Daan is Peter’s mom. She does not get along with Anne at all. In fact, she criticizes Anne constantly and flirts with Mr. Frank which really gets Anne mad. However, Anne finds her easier to talk to than her own mother.

Hans Van Daan is Peter’s dad and Mrs. Van Daan’s wife. He often criticizes Anne like most of the adults.

Albert Dussel shares a room with Anne and is the last one to arrive in the “Secret Annex.” He was a dentist before he went into hiding. Anne likes him at first, but soon she discovers his true personality and has an opposite opinion of him. Occasionally, she would do things to annoy him on purpose.

A secondary character in the book is Peter Wessel, a young man who Anne crushes on. Anne often dreams of Peter and once dreamt of him touching her cheek. She hopes that they can be together when it is safe to come out of hiding.

Plot

Anne Frank is a normal teenage girl living a perfectly normal life until she finds out that the dictator of Germany, Adolph Hitler, is executing all Jews for no good reason. Her and her family are forced to go into hiding so the Nazis don’t take them away to concentration camps. They hide in an attic behind a bookcase in Mr. Frank’s office. They call it the “Secret Annex.” The three members of the Van Daan family (Petronella, Hans, and Peter) and Mr. Dussel, a former dentist, also hide with the Franks for their own safety.

The rising action is when the family is sitting around the radio listening to the news about the ongoing war. They hear that things are getting better and the war is on the verge of ending. However, unknown to the Franks, Van Daans, and Mr. Dussel, things really aren’t getting better.

The climax of the story is when Hitler was informed that there are Jews hiding in an annex. Hitler sends Nazis to go and find them. The eight of them are discovered and they are no longer safe.

The falling action is when the characters were taken off to concentration camp. They knew they were probably going to die, but tried to look on the bright side. They all were separated except for Margot and Anne who stayed together.

The resolution is when Miep finds Anne’s diary left in the annex. She was looking around in the room after they had been taken away. Miep saw a plaid cloth and went to pick it up. The diary, she soon learned, was under the cloth and an inspirational diary at that.

Theme(s)

I believe the main theme is isolation in two different ways. The first is physical because the Franks, Van Daans, and Mr. Dussel are physically cut-off from the rest of the world. It is just the eight of them cramped inside a small annex. They cannot go outside, they can barely even make noise, and they lived on the same foods for a while. They are isolated from the outside world.

The isolation theme of this book is also mental because Anne feels isolated from her family and friends hiding in the secret annex. Even while all eight of them are in the same room, Anne feels cut-off from most of the people there, especially her mother. Inside Anne, she is as far away from her mother as she can be, even if they’re sharing a chair. Anne feels the same way about Mrs. Van Daan and others hiding with her: isolated.

Conflicts

The conflict of Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl involves the Germans and the Jews. The story takes place in the middle of World War II and the Holocaust. The Germans, or Nazis, are executing all Jews under Adolph Hitler’s command. Jews were sent to concentration camps, which is the same as saying death row. A lot of Jews were sent into hiding, but most were discovered by the German army. The Franks, Van Daans, and Mr. Dussel are hiding from the Nazis in this book.

Those hiding in the “Secret Annex” were avoiding concentration camp, extreme torture, and death. They did not have a choice to hide unless they wanted to die, and would not have a choice to go to the camp if they were found. The Franks, Van Daans, and Mr. Dussel must keep their cover, stay quiet, and wait in hiding until the war is over and it is safe for a Jew to walk the streets in Holland.

Important Passages

Anne says, “I keep my ideals, because in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart.” I think this is a very inspirational quote. Anne is facing death at an unknown time, yet she is still very positive. This should instigate use to stay positive. The next time we are faced with a difficult situation and are down with pessimism, we can think of Anne Frank. This innocent girl’s problem was probably ten times as worse as what we are facing; nevertheless she still looks on the bright side as should we when facing an obstacle.

Anne also say, "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." I think this is a good passage from the book because it explains that you should be your own person and you are in the driver’s seat of your life. You can be whatever you want to be no matter what others tell you. I think this is good advice for a lot of kids. Even though others can guide you through life, ultimately you make your own decisions about your life. You control your life, use it wisely, do what you love, and have fun doing it!

Vocabulary

Florin: a cupronickel coin of Great Britain, formerly equal to two shillings or the tenth part of a pound and retained in circulation equal to 10 new pence after decimalization in 1971

Palpitation: an unusually or abnormally rapid or violent beating of the heart

Gibe: to utter mocking or scoffing words

Opklap: Dutch type of bed, which folds against the wall to look like a bookcase with curtains before it

Wangle: to bring about, accomplish, or obtain by scheming or underhand methods

Faze: to cause to be disturbed or disconcerted

Calligraphy: highly decorative handwriting

Finicky: excessively particular or fastidious

Saboteur: a person who commits or practices sabotage

Paragon: a model or pattern of excellence or of a particular excellence

Universal Connection

Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl is about an entire race of Jews being executed just because they are Jewish. Racism in the world today is comparable to the Holocaust because they were both discrimination against a race for no good reason. Now in most cases racism today is not as extreme, but it is still racial discrimination. It was wrong back then and it is wrong now. This is a connection between the book and the world today.

I can make a personal connection to this book because I sometimes feel as if adults are out to get me when they criticize me. All kids hate being criticized by adults and find at least one adult annoying, including me. Anne had bad relationships with the adults there and I know how she feels because I’ve been there before. Sometimes, you just want to talk back to a teacher or scream at a coach, but what makes it worse is you know you can’t. Anne felt this way in the book and I’ve felt this way before in life. This is how I connect to this book personally.

Reflective Questioning

I would ask Anne Frank so many questions if I had the chance when she was alive. I would ask things like what was it like hiding for years, did you ever think you would be found, and what went through your mind when you were found. However, I think the first questions I would ask are, “Did you ever think your diary would be published and have millions of copies sold? If you knew you did, would you have added anything or taken anything out before its publishing?” I would ask that because a lot of what she wrote was personal and I would hate to share all of my personal feelings and thoughts with millions of strangers all around the world. I would like to know if she felt the same.

I would rate this book a five of ten. It wasn’t one of the worst books I have ever read, but it was clearly not one of the best. I do not like stories that date that far back; I like books that are more modern. Also, I found it boring that it was the same thing every day: they ate the same foods, she writes her adoration for Peter, she complains about the adults, and she writes that she will one day be free. Another reason I did not like it is that it was too slow and took too long to read. I understand it is a classic, and the fact it is a true story is unbelievable. However, it is just not my kind of book. I prefer a book easier to relate to, or a book about a subject I am interested in.

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