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.
There is little to say here that is not already widely known, such has been the impact and legacy of the words written down by a 12-year old girl whilst hiding from the Nazis in occupied Holland. Anne Frank’s Diary, published initially and rather reluctantly by her father in both Germany and France in 1950 –went largely unnoticed, but when published in Japan two years later, it was a huge commercial success. The Japanese readership had recognised its powerful message and how her dignity, in the face of the most atrocious human actions, shone through. After further publications worldwide and a number of dramatisations, including a 1959 film The Diary of Anne Frank, the importance of the diary and the simple humanitarian messages it contained, was fully realised. Anne had wanted to be a writer from a young age and indeed, many have praised the diary for its literary qualities. Anne herself died of typhus in Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, but she has become a global icon.
In 1999, Time magazine named Anne Frank among the heroes and icons of the 20th century on their list The Most Important People of the Century, stating:
With a diary kept in a secret attic, she braved the Nazis and lent a searing voice to the fight for human dignity
There is a huge amount about Anne’s life on the internet but the best and most obvious place to start any further study of her extraordinary story is in www.annefrank.org