Anne Frank, her book and the world

For the first time, I am attempting to write about a book. It’s not my intention to write a book review for the book has been reviewed by the most competent and the best people suited for the job. What I am going to write below is just things that struck my mind not while reading alone but for quite some time now and there was show in a tv channel, in which some of people associated with and mentioned in the book were interviewed which moved me to write this blog.

The Dairy of a Young Girl - It’s the printed version of a personal dairy written by a girl in her early teens while her family was forced to go into hiding, fearing sure death in the hands of the Nazi forces, in the German occupied Holland in the World War II era. That is the simplest description one can give but certainly the book deserves a lot more. The Nazi government ordered the persecution of Jews by sending them to the concentration camps citing racial reasons. More often than not the kind of trouble Germany was subject to by the then superior powers of the world is forgotten. Nevertheless, it, in any way, doesn’t justify their acts, which is inhuman to say the least.

The family of Otto Frank moved from Frankfurt to Amsterdam as soon as the newly elected Nazi party and its leader Adolf Hitler, their only fault being owning a Jewish identity. As Holland too was invaded by the German forces, the Franks, like countless other Jews, were forced to abandon what ever they owned and confine themselves in secret places to avoid being sent to the concentration camps, which was nothing but an avenue to systematically murder people. The hiding place for the Franks happened to be a warehouse of an office building and they were supported by a group of Dutch friends. The youngest daughter of Mr.Otto Frank is Anne Frank, the writer of the dairy(read book).

The book is a brilliant depiction of human emotions – emotions of all kinds joy, sorrow, distress, agony, pain, love – you name it and it has found its expression in the writings of Anne. But the facts written in the book carry a more serious and deep meaning. It shows the suffering that innocent people go through for no fault of theirs. The most basic point, that a family has been in hiding, limiting themselves within four walls for more than two years and struggling for mere survival, in itself explains everything. Surviving on stored food, dependent on friends for getting anything, lack of access to education, business and medical facilities, precisely compromising on the basic human needs, are some of the most visible problems they face in exchange of their life which is endangered by the beliefs of a single individual or a group of people, unknown/unseen.

The quest to gain control over material resources and subsequent wars are nothing new to mankind. It would have evolved as an after effect when resources became the private property of an individual/group/community/region. The only qualitative difference one can possibly observe from the historical accounts is that in the past, wars have been fought in secluded and barren lands, far away from human settlements and these struggles did not impact the innocent citizen much. What ever be the reason citied for the war – be it in the larger interest of the territory or a personal fancy – people did not suffer much. The present scenario shows a far worse picture. The quest for resources have been given a political colour and proclaiming to bring about a change in the invaded territory (whether the territory wants the change or not have been grossly ignored in almost all the cases), invasion are being done and on top of all INNOCENT PEOPLE DIE, people who have the least to do with the struggle or the perceived reasons leading to the wars. The past decade alone would stand as a striking testimony. If one wants to have a peek into the sufferings of people during a war, this book is one of the best as it paints the reality aptly.

"It’s a wonder I haven’t abandoned all my ideals, they seem so absurd and impractical. Yet I cling to them because I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart”, wrote Anne Frank in one her final letters before being by betrayed by another human being leading to capture of the Franks and sending them to concentration camps. The only person to survive the ordeal was Mr.Otto Frank who was left with nothing but memories and the dairy.

Though he claimed that the German race was pure and superior, Adolf Hitler himself could not be a German citizen after all. He was a born Austrian and there are disputes regarding his father's race and also there are accounts which say his father might well have been a JEW !

8 Comments:

Gauri Gharpure said...

I read Anne's diary a long time back, perhaps i ws the same age when she wrote the diary, and so it was even more appealing and senseless and mysterious... For the diary is the world thru the eyes of a person just stepping on the thresholds of adulthood.. felt nice goin thru ur write up which made me remember Anne, as I pictured her after reading the book, again...

*~*Tinkerbell Forever*~* said...

True... Anne's final words remain chillingly and hauntingly in my mind as i imagine the last few days she spent at the concentration camp with disease and death all around... yet her unbeatable belief in the 'goodness' of life is commendable and inspiring... happy to see a guy understanding the most personal thoughts of the young girl!!

suren said...

@gauri
thanks...:)

@tinks
thanks for the complement ;)

S Ramanathan said...

the NAZI genocide has been among the very few historical events which have been showcased in so many forms and mediums, and the reality, to some extent, brought out. and it has really moved me. have u watched schindlers list? another spielberg beauty. pls do if u have not, its abt the NAZI period too..

Ankur said...

i have not read anne frank, but just thinking abt it makes me sad and sick..

Deepak said...

nice post on anne frank...
Your writing reminded me of reading her book....

Sruthy said...

Truly touching...

suren said...

@ ram .. i haven't seen the movie ya but yes have heard lots... will see it :)
@ankur,deepak,sruthy thanks for dropping by please keep visiting