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COMENIUS PROJECT

THE DIARY OF A
YOUNG GIRL

BY
ANNE FRANK

THE DIARY OF A YOUNG GIRL – ANNE FRANK


XAVIER JORDANA BARRAL
1st BATXILLERAT “A” 2008 – 2009
IES JOAN BRUDIEU
ENGLISH LANGUAGE
ENGLISH DEPARTMENT
INDEX
1. Introduction……………………………………………………………………page.1
2. Literary and social analysis of the work…………...………………….…...page.3
3. Historical and social context of the work…………………………………..page.6
4. Study of the country and the city where the novel was written.…………page.9
5. Jewish customs and inheritance…………………………………...……..page.12
6. Personal opinion of one passage from the book………………………..page.15
7. Summary of the novel………………………………….…………………..page.18
8. Conclusion and personal opinion.…………………..……………...…….page.19
9. Bibliography and webgraphy...…………………………………...……….page.20
INTRODUCTION

Anne Frank was born in Frankfurt, Germany on June 12, 1929. After the Nazis
appropriated power in 1933, the Frank family moved to Amsterdam and led a
quiet life until the German invasion of the Netherlands in 1940.

As a result of ever-increasing anti-Jewish measures and mounting uncertainty


for their safety, the family went into hiding in July 1942, followed a week later by
family friends, the van Peels, and their 15-year old son, Peter.

Fritz Pfeiffer joined the group in November 1942. The occupants of the Secret
Annex, aided by friends, lived comfortably until August 4, 1944 when they were
found and arrested by the SD. Anne died of typhus in March 1945 in Bergen-
Belsen. Anne’s father, Otto Frank, survived the war.
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Anne kept several diaries during her stay in the Secret Annex. In them she
described life in the Annex, her dreams, and her fears.
These diaries survived the war, and the first version, edited by Otto Frank
and a Dutch publishing house, was published in the Netherlands in 1947.

The first German and English translations, published in 1950 and 1952
respectively, retained many of the passages deleted in the Dutch edition,
including criticism of Anne’s mother and Anne’s awareness of her emerging
sexuality.
With the publication of The Diary of Anne Frank: the Critical Edition in 1986,
the Netherlands Institute for War Documentation verified the authenticity of
the diaries.

Anne’s diary has now been published in more than fifty languages; the total
number of copies printed amounts to almost twenty million. The stage version
of the diary premiered on Broadway on October 5, 1955, and received a
Pulitzer Prize and a Tony Award. The film version followed in 1959.

SPECIFIC POINTS

1. Cultural and social analysis of the novel

Frank and the others were in hiding from June 1942 to August 1944. World
War II lasted from 1939 to 1945, involving the United States, Japan, and most
of Europe, including Russia.

While the causes of the war are complex, historians agree that without Adolf
Hitler's regime there would have been no World War II at that time.
Following World War I, Hitler began to develop his idea of a "Master Aryan
Race." This vision included enlarging Germany by overtaking neighbouring
countries.

The National Socialist Party, or Nazis, believed in a totalitarian government


that would, in theory, fairly distribute wealth and provide full employment.

Faced with economic hardship and political uncertainty, Germans were


responsive to Hitler's impassioned speech-making.
Hitler maintained that radicals and Jews were to blame for Germany's
problems.

Before July 1942, Anne Frank was what every 13-year-old girl wanted to be.
She went to school, had plenty of friends, and pleased everyone around her.
She flirted with boys, talked back to her teachers, and did not let anything get
in her way.

When her Jewish family fled into hiding, however, her life would never be the
same.

As World War II progressed, people like Anne were not safe even in their own
homes. Her family left everything they knew behind and moved into the third
and fourth floors of an office building.
With no outside contact besides help from some of the office building workers,
the Franks' start in the “Secret Annex” was not all that bad regardless. Anne
even saw it as a new and exciting adventure.

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2. Historic and social context of the work. (The Second World War)

Chronology - 1939 to 1945 - The Second World War

1939
Germany invades Poland.
Britain and France give Hitler ultimatum (Sept 1)
1940
Nazis invade Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg (May 10)
Germans cross French frontier using air/tank/infantry “Blitzkrieg” tactics
(May 12)
Italy declares war on France and Britain; invades France (June 10)
Germans enter Paris; city undefended (June 14)
France and Germany sign armistice at Compiègne (June 22)
Nazis bomb Coventry, England (Nov 14)

1941
Germans launch attacks in Balkans.
Yugoslavia surrenders - General Mihajlovic continues guerrilla warfare;
(April 17)
Nazi tanks enter Athens; remnants of British Army quit Greece (April 27)
Hitler attacks Russia (June 22)
Atlantic Charter—FDR and Churchill agree on war aims (Aug 14)
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Japanese attacks on Pearl Harbor, Philippines, Guam force U.S. into
war; U.S. Pacific fleet crippled (Dec 7)
U.S. and Britain declare war on Japan.

1942
British surrender Singapore to Japanese (Feb 15)
Roosevelt orders Japanese and Japanese Americans in western U.S.
to be exiled to “relocation centers,” many for the remainder of the war
(Feb 19)
U.S. and Filipino troops on Corregidor island in Manila Bay surrender to
Japanese (May 6)
U.S. and Britain land in French North Africa (Nov 8)

1943
Casablanca Conference—Churchill and FDR agree on unconditional
surrender goal (Jan 14 – 24)
German 6th Army surrenders at Stalingrad—turning point of war in
Russia (Feb 1 – 2)
Remnants of Nazis trapped on Cape Bon, ending war in Africa (May 12)
Nazis seize Rome (Sept 10)

1944
U.S. and British troops land at Anzio on west Italian coast and hold
beachhead (Jan 22)
U.S. and British troops enter Rome (June 4) 7
D-Day—Allies launch Normandy invasion (June 6)
Paris liberated (Aug 25)
Athens freed by Allies (Oct 13)
Americans invade Philippines (Oct 20)

1945
Mussolini killed at Lake Como (April 28)
Berlin falls (May 2)
Germany signs unconditional surrender terms at Rheims (May 7)
Allies declare V-E Day (May 8)
USSR declares war on Japan (Aug 8)
Japan agrees to surrender (Aug 14)
V-J Day—Japanese sign surrender terms aboard battleship Missouri
(Sept 2)

Orange – Axis powers - Germany, Italy, Japan, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria…

Green – Allies - Britain, France, USSR, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada,


China, Denmark, Greece, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, South
Africa, Yugoslavia…

Grey – Neutral Countries - Spain, Portugal, Litany, Sweden, Angola,


Mozambique…

3. Study of the country and the city where the novel was written
The Netherlands became a constitutional monarchy in 1839. It remained neutral
in the First World War. When Britain and France declared war on Germany in
1939, in the Second World War, the Netherlands remained neutral again.

The main purpose of the German invasion of the Netherlands was to draw away
attention from operations in the Ardennes and to lure British and French forces
deeper into Belgium.

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The B-25, a twin-engine medium bomber named after Brig. Gen. Billy Mitchell,
was heavily used by the Allies during World War II.

The invasion resulted in 3,500 dead, and 6,000 wounded Dutch soldiers and
the deaths of over 9000 civilians. The German army lost 2,500 men, suffered
6,000 wounded and 700 troops reported missing, and 2,000 were captured
and shipped to Britain.
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The trade union movement made attempts to protect the Jews in the
Netherlands and in February 1941 they called an anti-persecution strike.
However, they were unable to stop 100,000 Dutch Jews from being deported
and murdered in extermination camps in Nazi Germany.

This camp already opened in 1937. Some 65,000 prisoners perished during
the war, and after the Germans had started to evacuate the inmates, the camp
was finally liberated by US forces on April 11, 1945.

The method of killing at these camps was typically poison gas obtained from
the German chemical company IG Farben, usually in gas chambers, although
many prisoners died in mass shootings, by starvation or by torture.
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World War II is
known as one
of the most
tragic periods
in Jewish
history

Jewish were
ransacked in numerous German cities along with 8,000 Jewish shops, towns
and villages.

They destroyed buildings with sledgehammers, leaving the streets covered in


smashed windows. Jews were beaten to death; 30,000 Jewish men were taken
to concentration camps; and 1,668 synagogues ransacked with 267 set on fire.
By December 1941, Adolf Hitler decided to completely exterminate European
Jews.
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4. Jewish customs and inheritance

Jews & Judaism

A Jew is a member of the Jewish people, an ethnoreligious group originating


from the Israelites or Hebrews of the ancient Middle East. The Jewish people
and the religion of Judaism are strongly interrelated, and converts to
Judaism have been absorbed into the Jewish community throughout the
millennia.

Jewish history began during the second millennium BCE with the Biblical
patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. The Jews enjoyed two periods of
political autonomy in their national homeland, the Land of Israel, during ancient
history.

Customs Related To Wedding


• During the week before the wedding, it is customary for the groom and
bride not to see each other, even during the day.
• If the wedding takes place before sunset, the groom and bride do not
have to complete their fast.
• It is customary that both fathers accompany the groom and both
mothers the bride.

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• The groom should not have money, silver articles, gold, precious
stones, etc. in his pockets at the time of marriage.

Jewish Death Rituals

• The body of the deceased is washed thoroughly.


• The deceased is buried wearing a simple white shroud.
• The body is guarded or watched from the moment of death until after
burial.
• Upon hearing about a death, a Jew recites the words, “Baruch dayan
emet”, Blessed be the one true Judge.
Shabbat

Shabbat is the weekly Sabbath or day of rest in Judaism, symbolizing the


seventh day in Genesis, after the six days of creation.

Though it is commonly said to be the Saturday of each week, it is observed


from sundown on Friday until the appearance of three stars in the sky on
Saturday night.

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The exact time therefore differs from week to week and from place to place,
depending on the time of the sunset.

Jewish Dietary Laws

• Certain animals may not be eaten at all. This restriction includes the
flesh, organs, eggs and milk of the forbidden animals.
• Of the animals that may be eaten, the birds and mammals must be
killed in accordance with Jewish law.
• All blood must be drained from the meat or broiled out of it before it
is eaten.
• Certain parts of permitted animals may not be eaten.
• Fruits and vegetables are permitted, but must be inspected for bugs.
• Grape products made by non-Jews may not be eaten.
• There are a few other rules that are not universal.

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5. Personal opinion of one passage from the book chosen by the
student

On September 3, the group of Otto Frank was deported on what would be the
last transport from Westerbork to the Auschwitz concentration camp, and
arrived after a three-day journey.

A reconstruction of
the barracks in the
concentration camp
Westerbork where Anne
Frank stayed from
August to
September 1944.

In the chaos that marked the unloading of the trains, the men were forcibly
separated from the women and children, and Otto Frank was wrenched from
his family.
A Star of David, often yellow-colored,
was used by the Nazis during the Holocaust as
a method of identifying Jews.

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All children younger than fifteen were sent directly to the gas chambers. Anne
had turned fifteen three months earlier and was one of the youngest people to
be spared from her transport.

She was soon made aware that most people were gassed upon arrival, and
never learned that the entire group from the Achterhuis, where was her father,
had survived this selection.
Anne, in his diary, reasoned that her father had been killed immediately after
they were separated.
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I have chosen this passage because I think is the most difficult and sad
moment for any family. This involves the fragmentation of the family and the
disunity.

I think it was one of the hardest moments for Anne, because her father was
the only member of the family who never lost hope of survival.
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SUMMARY OF THE NOVEL

The day of Anne’s birthday, she receives a diary on her thirteenth birthday.
She names it Kitty, her best friend.

Some days later, after receiving a notice for


her father and her sister Margot, Anne and
her family flee to their hiding place, the
Secret Annexe.

Another family, the Van Daans, arrive with


their son Peter.

Anne often feels guilty for being safe in hiding while her Jewish friends are
probably suffering but she feels lucky that they have food and shelter, that
they are able to laugh at each other, and that they have books and a radio.

She and Peter Van Daan develop a crush


on each other.
On D-Day, the English land on the French coast. There is great discussion
about the hope of liberation, and they have fresh courage and strength.

Anne celebrates her fifteenth birthday. Many cities have fallen to the Allies,
and the mood is optimistic.

Her diary ends, for on August 4, 1944, the


Secret Annexe was raided and they were
taken away to German and Dutch
concentration camps.

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CONCLUSION AND PERSONAL OPINION

I think that one single Anne Frank moves us more than the countless others,
who suffered just as she did.

The best thing is that we could keep this diary because, certainly, she wasn’t
thinking about who was going to read her diary. The only thing she wanted
was the joy of writing and relating the best and the worst things that she was
living in the most difficult years of her life.
I think that the meaning of the diary is one of the most important in the world,
because, nowadays, this diary is one of the most read and translated. When
she was writing it, she didn’t know if it was going to be popular.

With this diary, we can know a lot about her, her family and the difficulties
they experienced.

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BIBLIOGRAPHY AND WEBGRAPHY

1. Frank, Anne. The Diary of a Young Girl. Penguin Readers, Level 4,


Intermediate, Harlow England. Pearson Education Limited 2008

1. http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ana_Frank
2. http://www.exordio.com/1939-1945/codex/verdad-ficcion/ana-frank.html
3. http://www.kirjasto.sci.fi/annefran.htm
4. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_history_of_the_Netherlands_during_
World_War_II
5. http://www.thehollandring.com/ww2.shtml
6. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_II
7. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Diary_of_a_Young_Girl
8. http://homeworktips.about.com/od/bookreportprofiles/p/annefrank.htm
9. http://www.enotes.com/anne-frank
10. http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diario_de_Ana_Frank
11. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amsterdam

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