Anne Frank was born on the 12th of June 1929, in Frankfurt, Germany. She belonged to a Jewish family and was a bright daughter of Otto Frank, a businessman, while her mother, Edith Hollander Frank, was a homemaker. As a child, Anne was vibrant and extrovert, who loved to share her opinions and stories with others. She was an ardent reader and loved to read good books. She decided to become a writer someday. Unfortunately, the innocent dreams of this little girl never came true when Adolf Hitler assumed power in Germany and his hatred for the Jewish community. They were one of the six million Jewish families who faced displacement. Keeping the critical condition in mind, Otto Frank decided to make a move and the family settled in the Netherlands.
After settling in Amsterdam, Anne enrolled in a Montessori school. Despite facing language problems, she did really well. Soon, German forces invaded the Netherlands, making life difficult for the Jewish community. Anne, along with her sister, was transferred to a Jewish school, but soon they had to quit their education. So, she received little formal education, yet her diary won hearts across the globe.
Tragic Years and Death
Since Germans were attaining more power with an increase in difficulties of the Jewish people, the tensions and problems of Anne’s family increased too. Her father lost ownership of the newly-settled business. In 1942, the Germans started sending the Jews to the concentration camps established in Poland and Germany. Anne’s father smelt the danger and prepared a hiding place in his office for the family. Though they hid in the annex with another Jewish family, the looming shadow of deportation and betrayal constantly haunted them. Unfortunately, their fears turned into a reality and the Gestapo discovered their secret place. They sent them to the concentration camps, where Anne’s mother died of hunger. Later, Anne, along with her sister, was sent to the Bergen Belsen, another concentration camp, where she went through horrible experiences including hard labor. Anne was just fifteen when she succumbed to typhus and breather her last in the concentration camp in 1945.
Some Important Facts of Her Life
- She is famous for her work, The Diary, which has been translated into more than 65 languages and adapted for several movies.
- The diary won both the Pulitzer Prize for the best drama and the Tony Award for the best play in 1956.
- Many schools and other buildings were named after Anne Frank in the United States.
Anne Frank, a Jewish teenager, became known to the world because of the writing experiences she journaled during the Holocaust, which later got published as, The Diary of a Young Girl. Discovered in the attic, where she led the last difficult years of her life, her diary melted the hearts of the readers. She skillfully documented the horrors of the Nazi regime and the suffering of the Jewish community during the Holocaust. Cut off from the world around them, the poor family faced boredom, hunger, fear of death, and horrors of enslavement, which she documented her only work.
Although Anne Frank was a young girl when she started writing, the experiences, brutalities, and cruelty she witnessed and suffered from gave her writing a classic touch. The book starts with a happy note, a simple explanation of a thirteen years old girl, who becomes happy after getting presents from her parents. Soon, the joyous colors of her life begin to fade when this tiny girl sees the worst of her life. The simple yet catchy narration, logos, pathos, the emotional growth in her thoughts and ideas, and other literary devices make her work sound different from such other narratives. The major themes in her work are loneliness, horrors of war, unity, coming of age experiences, and death.
Anne Frank’s sole writing piece, The Diary of a Young Girl, was first published in Germany and France in 1950 long after her death.
Anne Frank’s Impacts on Future Literature
Despite winning accolades, it is quite unfortunate that Anne Frank could not enjoy it. Meyer Levin, a famous dramatist, was highly impressed by her writing style and the quality of her work. John Berryman, a poet, called her work a unique depiction of the tragic history documented with honesty. Eleanor Roosevelt, a great politician, also lauded her for her moving commentary of war. Similarly, Soviet writer, Ilya Ehrenburg, also sings in his praise, calling her work “a voice of six million people.”
- “The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quite alone with the heavens, nature, and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy, amidst the simple beauty of nature. As longs as this exist, and it certainly always will, I know that then there will always be a comfort for every sorrow, whatever the circumstances may be. And I firmly believe that nature brings solace in all troubles.” (The Diary of a Young Girl)
- “As long as this exists, this sunshine and this cloudless sky, and as long as I can enjoy it, how can I be sad?” (The Diary of a Young Girl)
- “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” (Anne Frank’s Tales from the Secret Annex: A Collection of Her Short Stories, Fables, and Lesser-Known Writings)