Essay on Holocaust. The Analysis of the Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
In 1933 Hitler’s Nazi party commenced a mass genocide on the Jewish people, whom they blamed for the nation's issues. Germany continued to conquer surrounding countries while continuing to prosecute and kill millions of Jews. This time period known as the Holocaust lasted until 1945. Because of the monumental impact, the Holocaust has made on history, there have been many television programs and literature produced highlighting this time period. The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank, a collection of Anne Frank's personal thoughts as she and her family lived in hiding for two years in the secret annex and Life Is Beautiful, a movie directed by Roberto Benigni which describes the fictional story of Guido and his family as they make the best of living in a concentration camp. Though one of the stories is fictional and the other true, they both clearly demonstrate the importance of remaining optimistic especially during times of hardship.
Despite all the difficulties Anne Frank’s family encounters, she remains optimistic, an attitude that she believes is critical to surviving. For example, in one of her diary entries, she lists the first activities the other annex members will do when they are allowed outdoors again. When describing her own wishes Anne states, “I shouldn’t know where to start! But most of all, I long for a home of our own, to be able to move freely and to have some help with my work again at last, in other words-school” (90). Anne's optimism is highlighted when she talks about what she wishes to do after the war is over. Anne plans out the future in complete clarity as if she’s certain she will survive through the war even though the future is unclear.
Anne also continues with her school work while in hiding, even writing that she may be able to go back to school in the fall. Secondly, in another entry, she questions why Jews are being targeted and who would allow such suffering. Anne writes, “It is God that has made us as we are, but it will be God, too, who will raise us up again. If we bear all this suffering and if there are still Jews left, when it is over, then Jews, instead of being doomed, will be held up as an example” (207). This illuminates the optimistic attitude of Anne Frank when she talks about how God will lift up the Jewish people and hold them as an example for others. She is confident there will be a time for her to be displayed when all the suffering Jews have endured will cease. A future that helps her through the many days she finds herself feeling hopeless and depressed.
A third example is less than a month before the secret annex is discovered, Anne describes the excitement of D-Day and everyone's revitalized faith that the war’s end is quickly approaching. She explains, “The best part of the invasion is that I have the feeling that friends are approaching. We have been oppressed by those terrible Germans for so long, they have had their knives so at our throats, that the thought of friends and delivery fills us with confidence” (245). This reveals Anne's optimism because even though in the past she has constantly stressed the importance of not getting over excited, she cannot help but be extremely hopeful of the war ending so soon. D-Day is a major achievement in the war that fills the annex with strong anticipation for the coming future. Overall Anne Frank’s optimistic attitude is a crucial part of surviving in the secret annex as she constantly stresses in her many diary entries.
Fearful of the unforeseen future after being prosecuted by the Nazis for the crime of being Jewish, Guido Orefice recognizes the importance of remaining optimistic not only for him but his family. This is present when Jewish restrictions start to become more accepted by the Italian people, which Giosué observes first hand when he sees an anti-Semitic sign. Giosué asks for a baked good after being attracted to a bakery window with a sign that forbids Jews and dogs. In order to hide the truth from his son, Guido says that people may display they wish and tells the fictional story of a shop refusing Chinese and kangaroos. This illustrates Guido's optimism because he believes he can avoid the signs forever, despite their growing popularity of anti-Jewish businesses. He doesn't bother telling the truth to Giosué since he doesn't feel that he will have to and that he can blind him from reality. Secondly, following Guido and his son being taken by the Nazis he fools Giosué into believing the concentration camp is a game for his birthday.
Attempting to be a good father he impersonates a translator and devises fake rules to enforce the charade. When a German officer requests a prisoner to translate the camp rules into Italien, Guido volunteers despite his inability to understand German. He improvises a point based game and he creates imaginary rules which he carefully manipulates to answer any of his son's possible questions. This shows the optimistic characteristic of Guido because he thinks he can escape from the Nazis with his family. He truly believes that even in their predicament he will find a solution, regardless of having no knowledge of how to execute his plan. Lastly, after spending a reasonable time in the camp separated from his wife, Guido has nothing but hope that he will reunite his family and somehow to make it out of the camp. Because of his previous occupation of being a waiter and has a connection to a well-respected doctor in camp, he is allowed access to work in the dining hall. When alone he finds a record player and sets a song with a deep emotional connection to him and his wife to play loudly out the window.
This act further proves Guido's optimism because there is an enormous chance that Dora isn’t even alive, let alone able to hear his message. But nevertheless, he plays their song. This shows his faith that she is alive and well even under their unfortunate circumstances. Regardless of Guido Orefice's challenging situation of being held in a Nazi concentration camp, he continues to be optimistic in order to keep his family together.
In The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank, a novel compiled of personal entries from a teen girl living during the Holocaust and the historical fiction movie Life Is Beautiful directed by Roberto Benigni, about a man and his family’s lives in a concentration camp both Anne and Guido acknowledge the importance of remaining optimistic. They also do their best to maintain this hopeful despite the difficulties they face. Anne proved her everlasting optimism when she constantly talks about her future, talks about a time when Jews are once again excepted, and believes the war will soon come in an end. Guido reveals his similar attitude during times he shields Giosué from the ant-Semitic signs, harsh truth of the concentration camps, and when he plays a song for his wife on the record player. It would then seem optimism is of grave importance, especially in times of hardship.