Summary of The Diary of Anne Frank

The story of this book finds its argument in the diary of a 13-year-old Jewish girl, the daughter of German merchants. When the Nazi persecution began his family believed to find salvation in the Netherlands. However, the forced invasion of Holland in July 1942 will force them to choose between two difficult decisions: the Gestapo, or hide in an old house.


In a small space they had to inhabit eight people daily for little more than two years. Ana devoted herself to the task of reading with voracity and writing in her diary, in which the most sensitive observations about her existence and that of others are reflected.

Book summary

Ana’s diary was a gift for her 13th birthday on June 12, 1942. She names her journal Kitty and confides in everything that happens to her. The diary begins when Ana is still in school; there he has admirers and friends like Joep and Lies.

During that time, the Jews had to use a star on their clothes to be identified; purchases should be made in Jewish shops and businesses; they had no right to use the tram or use bicycles and children had to study in special schools and had no rights like the rest of the population.

A short time later, Ana receives the news that they must hide, because the Gestapo has quoted her sister Margot and her father. The scheduled date for the disappearance of the Frank family was July 16, however, on July 5, 1942, they fled early to the hideout, dressed in several layers of clothing and a suitcase per person. They are helped by Miep, a girl who worked in the warehouse and knew the family, Mr. Koophuis, Eli and Vossen.

This hiding place was a kind of small two-story apartment on top of the house. To disguise the door that faced the annex, they arranged a revolving bookcase. The rules for living there were very strict, among other things they should not make noise when the workers were in the office, they could not pull the toilet chain or open the water keys until they were alone in the building, the procedure for bathing It was in a tub that should be used in shifts and in areas that everyone chose.

Together with the Frank family, consisting of Mrs. and Mr. Frank, Margot and Ana, the Van Daan came to live: Mr. and Mrs. Van Daan and their son Peter. Ana has a bad relationship with Mrs. Van Daan, who pretends to educate her, as well as with Peter, whom she considers lazy and apathetic, since he is very reserved.

The first months are difficult for Ana, because she has a bad relationship with her mother, with Margot and with Mrs. Van Daan. Ana often feels sad when she quarrels with her mother whom she considers hard, sarcastic and disorderly; he also expressly states that he loves his father more than anyone else in the family and expects his approval.

During this first stage, Ana’s father became ill with eczema with a high fever, which represented a serious problem, since they could not go with doctors or get all the necessary medicines, fortunately, he recovered after a couple of weeks. Ana spends her time studying shorthand and French and reading how much book she finds.

On November 9, 1942 the English announced that Algiers, Morocco, Casablanca and Oran have fallen and now await the turn of Tunisia. Stalingrad continues to defend itself. Everyone in the annex expects this to be the beginning of the end.

Shortly after it was the 17th birthday of Peter a new tenant joined the annex, it is Alberto Dussel, a dentist whose wife is sheltered abroad. When Dussel arrived at the annex, they gave him a living rule and they installed him in Ana’s room. He tells her about life abroad, the constant hunting of Jews, the dispossession of their property and the mistreatment against them.

Sometimes Ana feels deeply distressed, because she misses her life abroad and her friends, she is also tired of the constant scolding and criticism, of the contempt with which they look at her because she is considered the scapegoat and of Dussel’s morning exercises in the room they share; nevertheless, it keeps a good face.

Ana calls this period “grave days”: a period that forces them to live hidden in the hope that it will not be for long. It also describes the misfortune of the war: Dutch Christian children sent to Germany; separate Jewish families; war across the globe; children without proper clothes asking for a piece of bread in the streets; Jews and Christians wait, the whole world waits, many await death.

On February 27, 1943, Churchill was recovering from pneumonia, Gandhi went on a hunger strike again and the owner of the building where the clandestine families were staying had just been sold without notifying Koophuis or Kraler. The new owner took a look at the building in the company of an architect and Koophuis noticed that he did not have the key to the annex; For now, they were safe.

In March 1943 bombings, machine guns and alarms were heard in the street. Everyone was very afraid, however the evils that awaited them outside were worse than being affected by a bomb.

It is announced that all Jews must leave the Germanic countries before July 18. Utrecht will be refined and people are brought to the slaughterhouse like a troop of sick and dirty animals. In April of 1943 Koophuis had a strong internal hemorrhage and had to be absent for three weeks. Elli contracted the flu and Vossen seems to have an ulcer as well.

The negative states that were generated in Ana

In May of 1943 Ana describes that the clothes of the tenants are very worn but that compared to the imprisoned Jews, they live in paradise. There have been many bombings, all of Holland is punished for its numerous strikes and they are in a state of siege. Young Dutch people are forced to sign up to agree with the new regime, however, 80% of them did not accept to do so and now they will be sent to work in Nazi lands.

In June 1943 Ana celebrates her 14th birthday. Her father has written a poem where she expresses her understanding of the burden she receives when judged by everyone because she is the smallest. Mr. Vossen was diagnosed with cancer, this implied that one of his protectors would have to be absent.

In July 1943 the north of Amsterdam was destroyed; the hospitals were full and there were more than 200 dead and many injured. The children looked for their parents among the ashes of the rubble. The bombings intensified in the Netherlands, but to leave as a result of the alarms is worse or equal to the bombings. There is only one light of hope: Mussolini gave his resignation to the king of Italy.

In September 1943 they heard on the radio that Italy had capitulated. On the other hand, Koophuis was hospitalized for a bowel operation for 4 weeks. Miep contracted influenza and Elli was on the verge of a nervous breakdown because he had to cover the work of Koophuis and Miep, as well as doing the orders of the annex. Things in the annex go from bad to worse, the mood is down because everyone has apprehension before the insurmountable obstacle of winter.

Ana had a vision of having seen her friend Lies emaciated and ragged asking for help. Ana feels guilt for not being able to help her and asks God to protect her. Consider that Lies is the symbol of the misfortune that thousands of Jews are going through, simply because they are Jews. The news on the radio is in a drowsy atmosphere.

During December, the day of San Nicolás, they try to liven up in the annex. Elli, Miep and Koophuis gave them gifts, a Christmas cake with the inscription “Peace 1944”. Meanwhile, the Frank and the Van Daan can no longer bear it, it is difficult to cohabit. The Franks have given the Van Daan their food but they are mean and selfish. The monotony begins to upset them. They have caught the suppliers of fake ration cards and the food they have to eat is very bad, based on cabbages and potatoes.

Ana’s opinions are becoming more mature, with greater vision, understanding and wisdom. He analyzed his life until 1944, he saw it through a ruthless magnifying glass. First, his house bathed in sunshine; then in the annex since 1942, the abrupt change, the disputes, the reprimands, and so on.

Ana starts looking for Peter’s company and now her perspective on him has changed. Discover that Peter observes her a lot and tries to be helpful to her. Feel that Peter has a huge need for tenderness. The relationship between them narrows more and more and not a day goes by without Ana writing to Kitty who is in love with Peter. Now his happiness is based on this new friendship. Together they talk about their families, about the situation they face, about loneliness.

Ana believes that he also loves her and feels guilt for Margot, who apparently feels something for him, however, she writes a letter where he clarifies to feel very happy for the new friendship he has entered into with Peter. Meanwhile, adults gossip about the relationship between Ana and Peter.

This is her understanding of the burden that she receives when she is judged by everyone because she is the smallest. Mr. Vossen was diagnosed with cancer, this implied that one of his protectors would have to be absent.

Ana expresses her regret at the war and considers its end far away. There is poverty, people do not have shoes, they are poorly dressed. There is not enough food, there are many assaults. The children are malnourished and there are sabotages against the authorities. People do not have coal and it’s quite cold. There are a number of epidemics, but the hope is in the advancement of the Russians, who are approaching Romania. The Germans have occupied Hungary and there still live 1,000,000 Jews who will have a very bad time.

On Tuesday, April 11, 1944 the annex faced a new adventure. They tried again to assault the warehouse by making a hole in the door below. Peter, Dussel, Van Daan and Mr. Frank went down to see what was happening and at that moment, a couple who were walking around gave them light. For a moment, someone came to the closet door and tried to open it.

Everyone assumed it was the police and that the Gestapo would discover them. Ana was ready to die and for a long time they did not move and remained silent. The bathroom stunk because everyone occupied it because of nerves. Finally they decided to call Koophuis to warn him about the theft and to send someone.

For 2 or 3 occasions they tried to open the closet door and someone prostrated in front of the door for a few hours. All remained silent and calm. When everything was over and Koophuis arrived, it caught their attention because they had been exposed when they went out to find out what was happening, because now they had been seen by the couple who were walking.

Ana feels excited because she already kissed Peter. His father has asked him to keep his distance because they can fall in love. However, Ana continues to visit Peter and writes a letter to his father to explain his feelings since they are locked up.

All await the landing of the English to Holland. Ana believes that this will happen when the English and the Americans believe it convenient, not when a group of affected countries decide, because they finally risk their people.

There is a new wave of anti-Semitism, even in those who were good. Ana feels sad, because she loves Holland and although she has no homeland, she wants to make Holland a beautiful country with noble people, her own homeland.

However, it is said that German Jews who are refugees in other countries will have to return to Germany. He can not understand why the Dutch, a good people, judge the most oppressed, most unhappy and perhaps most worthy people in the world. In the meantime, they have arrested their vegetable supplier because they housed 2 Jews. Now they will starve in the annex.

In May of 1944 Ana expresses that she is in a bad mood, depressed and without hope. It is beset by several problems: on the one hand, the vegetable supplier, the problem of the Jews, the disembarkation that makes you wait, the poor diet, the nervous tension, the depressing atmosphere, the need for freedom, the burden and danger they imply for its protectors, the fear of being discovered. Not even this makes them give up, they love life and they have not forgotten the voice of nature, they still wait, but Ana would like something to happen soon to eliminate the restlessness, so they will know if they must overcome or perish.

In June 1944 it was Ana’s birthday and the landing began and with it a large-scale bombing in Calais, Bologna, Le Havre and Cherbourg. English troops parachuted behind the lines. Gerbrandy, the Prime Minister of Belgium, King Haakon of Norway, De Gaulle, the King of England and Chruchill make speeches that represent a new light of hope that gives strength in the annex to resist the privations a while longer.

The last letter

Ana no longer feels the same interest as Peter did before. Peter admires the strength and good humor of Ana and therefore clings to her. Ana feels that there are more reasons to trust that the war will end because in July 1944 there was an assassination attempt against Hitler, not by Jews, communists or English capitalists, but by a German general, an earl, who to be discovered was shot by the Fuhrer.

On Tuesday August 1, 1944 is the last letter of Anne to Kitty, in it, makes a recapitulation of his way of being, considers that “Anne the Tender”, has never made an appearance in company, not once, but in solitude, his voice dominates almost always. “Ana la Pura” points the way; outwardly, she is just a goat detached from her rope, crazy and petulant.

She looks and feels things in a totally different way to how she expresses them speaking, that’s why they call her alternately, flirtatious, pedantic and romantic. “Ana the cheerful” laughs at that, responds with insolence, shrugs indifferently on her shoulders, pretends she does not care about anything, but Ana la Dulce reacts the opposite way.

Here ends the diary of Anne Frank. On August 4, 1944, Feld Polizei made an appearance in the Annex. All its inhabitants, as well as Kraler and Koophuis, were arrested and sent to concentration camps. The Gestapo razed the Annex leaving old books, magazines and newspapers on the floor, among which Miep and Elli found Ana’s Diary. Of all the inhabitants of the Annex, only Ana’s father returned. Kraler and Koophuis, who resisted the deprivations of the Dutch camps, returned to their homes.

In March of 1945, Ana died in the concentration camp of Berge-Belsen, two months before the liberation of Holland.

Image: escaramuza.com.uy

Summary of The Diary of Anne Frank
Source: Education  
June 13, 2019


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