Genre: History, Diary
You Shouldn’t Read People’s Private Diaries
I had just started reading this book/diary when a friend commented, ‘’You should not read other people’s diaries’’! Very witty comment. And then I thought about it, Anne Frank’s diary must be the most read private diary in the world. And she actually wanted it that way.
You start off with a heavy heart as the circumstances behind the diary are so awful and gruesome. You feel really sad when Anne talks optimistically about ‘what she will do when they come out of hiding’ or ‘what kind of a mother she will be’. You desperately wish things had not turned out the way they did, if somehow the past could be changed. And then you realise, as per her own observations, she was one of the lucky few to have held out for so long and escaped from the gas chambers as long as she did.
The other interesting aspect of the diary, which I had not anticipated, was the psychology of a young teenage girl. Its interesting to see how her emotions change and how she handles difficult situations. She is mature beyond her years in one diary entry and dreamy and childlike in the other.
Her relationship with her parents and sister, her ambitions, her ability to deal with life in hiding, every incident has an impact on you. You cant help but analyse every entry she makes into the diary as you have to imagine the things before, after and around them. It is a diary after all, not a book!
Her analysis of her love for Peter is so mature. Far from the teenage romantic ideas you see in movies. In fact, I wonder if any adult has thought about feelings of love with such clarity and sensibility. Then again, she’ll talk about something in such an immature manner and turn the tables on herself. But overall its quite impressive to see such a young person thinking about her character and analysing her own actions in such an extensive manner.
In the end what you take away from the ‘diary’ is the long life lived by a young girl in a short span of time. Thankfully, mostly, the horror of the situation takes a background and you get completely involved with Anne’s trials & tribulations.
A thoughtful entry on ‘parents’ by Anne: ‘’They take us seriously when we make a joke and laugh at us when we are serious.’’
In this day and age of technology how could an Anne Frank App be far behind! Although not my cup of tea, for those who might be interested: