Anne Frank’s diary: sheltered writing; unsheltered evil

This past week, on August 4th, when I read that Anne Frank had been captured by the Nazi’s on that date in 1944, I recalled her diary entries, and that this beautiful, sensitive teenage writer dreamed of becoming a playwright.

Although everything about her death is nauseatingly tragic, including the fact that she did not live to realize her dream, it is heartwarming and ironic that death could not silence her pen—she became the published author she dreamed of—albeit not as a playwright.

Her writing, not in the form of a play, but as a series of diary entries that provide an autobiographical account of the drama of her last days when she was sheltered by a Dutch family, continues to be read today, in a multiplicity of formats and languages.

Her writings exposed–and continue to fight– the kind of evil that led to her capture and death because it humanized Nazi-victim statistics by enfleshing one of its victims with whom we can identify and empathize: an innocent teenager.

The fourth and fifth graders who have read her biographies, particularly the version: Who Was Anne Frank?, have been deeply touched by the story of her life, and receptive to learning more about the Holocaust.

Since the future is in our children’s hands, it is good that they be sensitized to the atrocities of the past in order to recognize and combat them going forward.

Anne Frank is a compelling author and biographical subject.

As a human race, we are fortunate that she wrote, that the Nazi’s did not confiscate her writings, and that her father permitted her writing to be published for our edification and humanization.

As long as her diary is read, Anne Frank continues to have a potent author’s voice, for which I am exceedingly grateful.

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