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English Summative - Incomplete

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Welcome back, ladies and gents! Hope you enjoyed listening to "Singing in the Rain", from the new movie, 'Singing in the Rain', currently still in theatres. Now, in case you forgot to check your calendar, today is June 12th. To most people, this is just the average Thursday, but to Otto Frank, the man sitting right in front of me today is his daughter, Anne Frank’s birthday. Welcome! Hello! Thank you for inviting me. Just an early warning, my English is not exactly the best. Oh don’t worry about that sir! You make the king’s jive! How are you doing? Just fine, thank you. Today, Mr. Frank is here to share with us and help promote one of the most moving and eloquent accounts of the Jewish Holocaust. Anne Frank documented 2 years of her life in hiding. Now, for any people who are unaware of the story of your daughter, mind giving us a little background on who Anne was? Well, of course there's no issue with that! Our family is German. Jewish, too. Just one year before Hitler became führer, We had to move to Amsterdam because there was simply too much discrimination against my people, and we knew that eventually, Hitler was going to kick us out of the country. So we decided to leave the country by choice, and once again, moved to Amsterdam. And speaking of the diary you just spoke of, We bought Anne a diary on her thirteenth birthday, and she really did put a lot of effort into sharing her emotions with that diary. Mhm. What are some topics you feel Anne really focused on in her diary? Definitely discrimination, war, isolation, and religion, but the biggest topic I felt she really demonstrated and tried to emphasize in her diary was - her growth. The coming-of-age process for her and how it was impacted by the Holocaust. What’s one thing you think she might’ve wanted people to take from her diary, The Diary of a Young Girl? In The Diary of a Young Girl, Anne emphasizes that sometimes, it’s not one’s choice to grow up, but rather the universe’s decision to force it upon them. Anne really was the average child before going into hiding; Cocky but kind. She was quick to make friends, and, in her diary, I believe on June 20th of 1942, she says, “I have a throng of admirers who can’t keep their adoring eyes off me and who sometimes have to resort to using a broken pocket mirror to try and catch a glimpse of me in the classroom.” (Frank, p. 13). See, she had the confidence. She was a very sociable child - very likable, too. But one thing I noticed while reading and editing her diary was that she started off very innocently - she was almost like a whole new person by the end of her diary. How so? For example, on November 19th of 1942, here in the book, she states, “I’m not exactly delighted at having a stranger use my things, but you have to make sacrifices for a good cause,” (Frank, p. 62). This was only a little after Mr. Dussel, the old dentist, moved in with us. Back then, her worries, they were so pure. Innocent, small. She wasn't worried about what was happening outside of the "Secret Annex", at least that's what she called it. And I wouldn't have had it any other way. But with everything that happened, well, she matured. Far too early. I remember on March 17th of 1944, she said, “Even though I’m only fourteen, I know what I want, I know who's right and who's wrong, I have my own opinions, ideas and principles, and though it may sound odd coming from a teenager, I feel I'm more of a person than a child - I feel completely independent of others." (Frank, p. 183). Are you okay with telling us exactly what she went through that lead to her coming-of-age? I thought you’d never ask. Earlier, I mentioned that my family and I had to move to Amsterdam because of Hitler. But even Amsterdam wasn’t safe from him. On July 5th of 1942 - oh, I’ll never forget that day; my eldest daughter, Margot, received a call-up notice from the SS. And what’s the SS? The Schutzstaffel. The armed protection squadron of the Nazi Party. Margot got a call-up notice, which meant that she would be sent to a concentration camp. Hitler had reached us here in the Netherlands. So we decided to go into hiding the very next day. We refused to play into his "Final Solution" to the "Jewish Problem". Now do not worry, we had already planned to go into hiding on July 16th, so we weren't exactly hit out of nowhere - we were prepared for the most part. but we weren’t expecting to have to go into hiding 10 days earlier. Regardless, we moved into the “Secret Annex” as Anne called it. Really, we were just hiding out in the attic of the apartment containing my office. We moved in with our friends and business partners, the Van Pels. Van Pels? When I read the book, they were the Van Daans. Yes, when editing the book, I wanted to provide the characters with some anonymity, I believe the word is. The Van Daans was the pseudonym I used for the Van Pels. Plenty of the characters in the book had pseudonyms. I believe most of them, possibly all of them had pseudonyms. Throughout the interview, I will try to use the pseudonyms, do not worry, because I'm aware that most readers do know these people with those names. Thank you. Now, who were the most significant people that helped Anne that she mentioned in her diary? Personally, I believe all of the residents of the Secret Annex played a huge role. For example, my wife, Anne’s mother, though Anne didn't seem to think well of her, she knew that everything her mother did was to help her grow. On January 6th of 1944, Anne made the following entry, "I've suddenly realized what's wrong with her. Mother has said that she sees us more as friends than as daughters." (Frank, p. 133). Edith, Anne’s mother, was a very open-minded woman. She wanted to teach the girls to be independent, and Anne knew that, too. She knew her mother cared for her, she just was short-tempered. In a sense, they both had very similar personalities. On December 30th of 1943, she says, "It’s true, she didn’t understand me, but I didn’t understand her either. Because she loved me, she was tender and affectionate,” (Frank, p. 132). And in that same entry, she says, “I was suffering then (and still do) from moods that kept my head under water (figuratively speaking) and allowed me to see things only from my own perspective, without calmly considering what the others - those whom I, with my mercurial temperament, had hurt or offended - had said, and then acting as they would have done.” (Frank, p. 132). Her mother really helped her grow. But Anne needed someone to help support her through her independence process. She had two people to help with that, her sister Margot and Peter Van Daan, the Van Daan's kid. Towards the end of March of 1944, and I was shocked when I read this while editing the book, Margot and Anne started exchanging letters with one another. They were never very close to one another, so once again, this was very shocking to me. They opened up to one another all of a sudden, which in her diary, Anne admitted to have really helped her, a lot. Then there was Peter. Through the diary, Anne really does express her coming-of-age process, and Peter really helped her figure her sexuality. She often admitted to being comfortable enough to talk to him about puberty, and the reproductive cycle of human beings. It even led to her eventually finding out that, well, she liked girls. And boys, too. On January 6th of 1944, she came to the realization that she liked Peter Van Daal, so she looked to find out what was exactly making her blush - the science behind it. She read a magazine and said, “I think that what’s happening to me is so wonderful, and I don’t just mean the changes taking place on the outside of my body, but also those on the inside.” (Frank, p. 134). Clearly, Peter just did a lot to help her mature. But she was just talking about stuff that she read in an article; isn’t this just media doing its job? Could be, but that does not change the fact that anyone thinking of such mature topics isn’t a little more grown-up than their own age. Good point. But were those the only people that helped Anne? Oh, of course not! We were very lucky to have plenty of support. We had other residents in the Annex - Mr. and Mrs. Van Daan and Mr. Dussel, but Anne didn’t seem to see them as very useful people. To which, honestly, I personally disagree. For instance, Mr. Van Daan provided her with some insight and gave her hope that the war would be over soon. On May 2nd of 1943, Anne says, “Nevertheless, he predicts we'll have to stay here until the end of '43. That's a very long time, and yet it's possible to hold out until then.” (Frank, p. 87). But there were people on the outside of the Annex who helped, and Anne, for those people, seemed to agree. Mr. Kugler, one of my former employees, was one of them. He really helped us keep our annex hidden and provided us with certain supplies. Here, Anne says, “Because so many houses are being searched for hidden bicycles, Mr. Kugler thought it would be better idea to have a bookcase built in front of the entrance to our hiding place.” (Frank, p. 33). He really cared for us. There was also Mr. Kleiman, who often provided the girls with books, and everyone loved him. He helped us despite all of his medical issues; even Anne noted on April 1st, 1943, “First, Mr. Kleiman, our merry sunshine, had another bout of gastrointestinal hemorrhaging yesterday and will have to stay in bed for at least three weeks.” (Frank, p. 82). And another thing the family had to say about him was, “‘When Mr. Kleiman enters a room, the sun begins to shine,’ Mother said recently, and she's absolutely right.” (Frank, p. 113). And then there were Miep and Bep; office workers who helped the girls a lot. They talked a lot, and the ladies often provided us with provisions. And I believe that about sums it up for assistants. Wow. I’m glad you guys had so much help, so with all of the help you guys had, what could you have possibly struggled with? There was a lot. The residents of the annex often fought; my wife was red, and Mrs. Van Daan was blue. And the high number of residents within the annex didn’t exactly help conceal our presence. That really seemed to stress Anne out. Multiple times in her diary did she state the impact that her fear had on her. On September 16th of 1943, she says, “I’ve been taking valerian everyday to fight the anxiety and depression, but it doesn’t stop me from being even more miserable the next day.” (Frank, p. 113). She often described herself as a caged wild bird. See? I meant it when I said that the girl was far too grown up for her age. Yes, such feelings can develop in children her age, but it’s just so rare. She truly was too young for all of this. And in addition to all of this, food eventually was scarce, Mr. Kleiman was struck with severe health issues and after Mr. Voskuijl found out about his cancer, he simply stopped caring. Oh lord. And what was the lowest point for Anne? I think, obviously, was when the Nazis raided our hiding place. Three days after Anne’s last entry on August 1st of 1944, SS officers arrested all of the Secret Annex residents in addition to both Mr. Kugler and Mr. Kleiman. Mr. Van Daan was gassed in Auschwitz, Mrs. Van Daan’s body was nowhere to be found, Peter was forced on a Death March, my wife and Mr. Dussel died of starvation and exhaustion in their concentration camps, and, my two daughters, Margot and Anne, they died of a Typhus infection in a concentration camp. I am the only survivor of the 8 who were arrested on August 4th of 1944. I think Anne’s - death was the lowest point for her in the book, wouldn’t you? I'm so sorry for your losses. But I'm here today to help you overcome that ordeal. You published the diary in hopes of following up with Anne’s wishes. Be proud, sir. I know that this must be very difficult for you. Thank you, I genuinely do appreciate this. Is there anything else that you’d like to talk about? Only if you’re okay with me asking the questions. Look, I came in here willing to open up and share everything that I can with you. Ask away! Well, I've read the book, and in the book, the only source you had to depend on to hear of what was going on in the outside world was a flimsy radio. Considering that this is a radio show, I just wanted to know, how did that minimal amount of media impact Anne? Well, let’s first establish that Anne had more than just a flimsy radio. She had books, too, and we had Mr. Kleiman and Miep to update us. But back to your question, the media really impacted her perception of herself, her life and the world. Remember when I mentioned that article she read about blushing? Yeah. You even noted that Anne may have admitted to liking both genders because it was just media doing its job. And in her time in hiding, she also read a book about a child who wanted to give birth by laying an egg. That book made her feel very self-conscious as she realized that plenty of the changes that had happened to the protagonist had not shown up on her. The more that Anne read, the more she worried about her femininity and sexuality. Additionally, at the beginning of the diary, Anne admits to not particularly being religious. At some point in time, she began to wonder if being Jewish was even worth the trouble. I mean, all of that propaganda on the radio really scared her. Speaking of which, propaganda is a form of government-issued media in a sense. On June 20th of 1942, Anne went on a long rant of all those restrictions that the Nazis had placed on Jews, and talked about how it was really pushing people away from Judaism - it was scaring them off. Unfortunately, all of those decrees really affected Anne. A knock on the other side of the Annex would mortify her. The German propaganda constantly playing on the radio made her miserable, but she’d always try to remind herself that other people had it worse. That her life wasn’t so bad. At least she was alive, right? Life seemed like nothing but mere survival for her. And her perception of the world, oh how the Holocaust changed it. When things began to go south in Holland, she wondered, she wondered what was going on with the rest of the world, only to find out through the English channel that all Jews being captured were gassed. They were also grabbing hostages, but their disappearances would be “fatal accidents” on the news the next day. Anne was terrified of Germans and worried that they would come to get her in the Netherlands. The world no longer felt inhabitable for her. She even mentioned in her diary that she would be too scared of leaving the annex even after the war was over. Would the world still hate her for her religion? Did her people even deserve this treatment? They didn’t. No one deserves to deal with all of this at such a tender age, and no, you don’t deserve to be treated like this because you have different beliefs, which is why Otto and I are currently working on a certain project; we want to open up a charity to support survivors of the Holocaust who need the help. To help spread the word. Also, there has been some talk about tearing down the secret annex which is simply unacceptable. Please, as soon as the association is launched, please look into donating. We were thinking of calling it the Anne Frank Foundation. Please be sure to look into it and help stop anti-semitism. Thank you so much for coming here today to help me promote the diary of a young girl and simply sharing so much with me and our listeners. And thank you for having me. And you were listening to the Eight O’clock Eden. Hope you have a good night, and Eden out!

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Duration: 16 minutes and 52 seconds
Language: English
License: Dotsub - Standard License
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Posted by: saladmonkey on Jun 7, 2019

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