Anne’s diary gives us a vivid description of the unexpected wretchedness unleashed on the Dutch people due to the air raids. There was misery and horror all around the country. People were getting robbed, maimed and even murdered. Bouts of intense epidemics were common during this time. Doctors were unable to visit their patients and there was unrestrained theft of automobiles
Due to a shortage of food, people resorted to robberies and petty crimes. Little children smashed the windows of people’s houses and stole whatever they could lay their hands on. People could not even think of leaving their houses for five minutes for fear of finding their belongings missing in their absence. The electric clocks on the street comers were destroyed and public phones were stripped. Men were forcibly shipped off to Germany to fight in the war, leaving behind starving children and women. The prices of goods soared, giving rise to inflation.
Anne’s diary tells us alot about her character, her dreams and her hopes. The diary is a collection of her innermost thoughts and feelings, as well as an account of her life during her years in hinding.
From the very onset we can tell that Anne is confident, creative and thoughtful. She is also a very detailed observer as is evident by her lists of birthday presents and her meticulous description of her friends. Anne also seems rather disciplined, as she often writes lengthy diary entries. She is brutally honest, atleast with herself. Her descriptions of her family and her dissatisfaction with them are evident in the pages of her diary. Her diligence in writing enables her to release strong feelings instead of blurting them out aloud and hurting her family and friends.
When Anne remarks that paper is more patient than people, she emphasizes the difficulty she has in expressing herself openly in front of others. She is evidently an introvert, and keeping a diary helps her keep in touch with her inner feelings.
Otto Frank, Anne’s father, is the manager of a food company. He shares a close bond with Anne. His birthday present to her, the diary, is her favourite. Otto Frank is a caring, resourceful and wise man. When the Van Daan family arrives to stay in the Secret Annex with them, Otto Frank serves as the peacemaker of the group “pouring oil on troubled waters”. He keeps Anne, Margot and Peter engaged in studying, reading and making family trees. He is generous, kind and level-headed unlike the other adults in the Secret Annex who are harsh and stingy. Anne continually tries to impress her father, live up to his expectations and obey his wishes. Otto Frank has a strong character and is clearly the head of the Frank household.
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