From The Diary Of A Young is an extract from Anne Frank’s Diary. Anne Frank is a sweet and young Jewish girl who lives in Amsterdam with her family. She was given a diary on her thirteenth birthday which she finds a very useful gift and in which she chronicles all the important events of her life from 12 June 1942 to 1 August 1944.
Table of Contents
Main Attractions of The Lessons
The diary captures a close examination of daily life under Nazi occupation. It has been originally written in Dutch. It becomes one of the world’s widely read books.
In the diary, Anne Frank also provides us with a brief sketch of her life and her emotional attachment with her grandmother.
The most interesting thing that Anne Frank writes about in the diary is that she presents a scenario of the classroom in which Mr Keesing, Maths teacher, is always annoyed with her because she talks too much and as a punishment, he assigns her extra homework. He tells her to write an essay on “A Chatterbox’ and on other subjects like it. She, however, very smartly justifies in her written essay for being a chatterbox that makes Mr Keesing allow Anne to talk in the class at the end.
Anne thinks that it is an odd experience for someone like her to keep a diary because according to her nobody will be interested in the unbosomings of a thirteen-year-old schoolgirl. However, she rethinks that she shall not bother if someone likes her ideas or not. She feels like writing and she shall pour out all the things buried inside her heart.
Now, Anne quotes the saying that ” paper is more patient than man”. Perhaps she is in search of a true friend with who she can express all the feelings and worries of her life. Finally, she finds a friend and calls it Kitty. It is not a human but her diary in which she openly pours out her most intimate feelings.
In the next paragraph, Anne elaborates the reason why she writes in the diary in spite of her odd feeling about it. She tells that nobody can believe that a girl of thirteen feels herself alone and truly she is not as she has darling parents and a loving sister of sixteen. On the surface, she has everything, a beautiful family, loving aunts and a good home. But she is not able to get closer to her relations to the extent she desires and that is the root cause of why she starts writing a diary. It is that she has no real friend.
Facsimile Of Anne’s Diary
Anne says that in order to improve in her mind the picture of her friend for whom she waited for a long time, she does not put down the facts as the most people do, but she wants the diary to be her friend and she calls this friend Kitty.
Now in the next section, Anne Frank provides a brief sketch of her life. She says that she has the respectable father Otto Frank and a mother Edith Hollander Frank. She also has a loving sister Margot who was born in Frankfurt in Germany in 1926 and herself was born on 12 June 1929. All of her parents migrated to Holland in 1933 and Anne and her sister first go to Aachen to stay with their dearest grandmother then after some time they also go to Holland.
About education, Anne writes that she starts learning at the Montessori nursery school where Mrs Kuperus is her teacher.
In 1941, Anne’s Grandma falls ill and she dies in January 1942. Anne expresses that only she herself knows how much she misses her grandmother. She still loves her even after her death.
Anne further talks about her classroom situation. She tells Kitty that their entire class is trembling with fear for the simple reason that their exams are coming very soon. The half of the students are making bets with one another telling, ” You’re going to pass ” No I am not “. Anne says that she is not sure who can pass because according to her the teachers are the most unpredictable living beings on the earth.
Proceeding forward, Anne says that she has nine teachers seven of them are male and two are female. She is going fine with all teachers except Mr Keesing who is always annoyed with her because she is too much talkative. Mr Keesing warns her several times to control her talkative behaviour but fails. At last, he assigns her extra homework several times. At the first time, he tells her to write an essay on the topic, A Chatterbox”.After pondering enough, Anne succeeds in writing three pages on the subject in which justifies that talking is a student’s trait. She further writes that she will try her best to control the behaviour but one is helpless to do anything with inherited traits. Mr Keesing has a good laugh at her argument.
When Anne proceeds to talk in her manner she is assigned the second essay. This time the subject of the essay is ‘ An incorrigible Chatterbox’.This time too Anne is able to write a good essay on the subject. This makes Mr Keesing keep calm for two whole periods.
Note: Incorrigible means that thing or person which / who cannot be corrected.
But during the third period, Mr Keesing gets angry once again and assigns Anne one more essay entitled ‘Quack, Quack, Quack, Said Mistress Chatterbox’.The entire class roared because they feel the subject as it is ridiculous.
Anne this time takes it a challenge. She thinks that this time she must come up with something different and original.
Anne tells that she feels excited when her friend Sanne who is good at poetry offers to help her in writing the essay in verse. Ultimately, they come up with a beautiful poem. The poem is about a mother duck and a father swan with three baby ducklings that are bitten to death by the father because they quacked too much. When Mr Keesing reads the poem, he takes the joke in a positive manner. He recites the poem to several class and even adds his own comments. Now Anne is not assigned any extra homework and Mr Keesing is also happy telling jokes these days.
1. Anne thinks that neither she neither any other person will be interested in the thoughts and feelings of a thirteen-year-old schoolgirl.
2. But she wants to write and reveal the things lying buried in her heart, that is her innermost feelings.
3. She wants to allow only a real friend of hers to see her diary but she has no such friend.
4. Her relations and common friends are interested only in fun and games and she can not talk to them about anything outside the everyday routine and ordinary things.
5. She is unable to get close to her friends and relatives.
6. She wants diary to be her real friend.
7. She calls it Kitty.
Character sketch of Anne Frank
Anne Frank is very intelligent and perceptive, and she wants to be a writer. She evolves from a naive, tempestuous, precocious, and somewhat petty teenage girl to an empathetic, compassionate thinker at the age of 13. She introduces herself as a lonely adolescent who has no one around her to open her heart. She is given a diary on her thirteenth birthday. She fails to come to terms with the adults as they can’t understand appreciate and share her feelings. She has many friends but they always talk about ‘trivial’ things. She can’t open her heart even to her mother. She lacks sympathy and depth of feelings. She can’t look towards Margot her elder sister for emotional support either. Hence she finds ‘Kitty’ or her diary—her only confidant. She can express her innermost thoughts and feelings only by writing a diary.
As she grows in months and years she shows a surprising maturity. The dire and unusual circumstances of the Holocaust makes her more introspective and thoughtful. Anne finds herself her family and the Jews in general alienated from the general stream of life in Europe. She shows a rare understanding of the working of the Nazis . She prays for herself and the Jewish race and hopes for their redemption. Anne has to struggle with her two-selves or two Annes. There is a constant struggle between her innermost thoughts and the adult world she has to live in.
Anne has passed puberty and enters the adolescent age. She adores her father but the age difference prevents her from sharing some intensely personal issues with him. She craves for emotional support as well as for physical love. Anne is divided against her ownself. She has an identity problem. She considers herself a German but has lost her citizenship. She has only God and her faith to look for redemption. She hopes to get freedom peace and fresh air after the war.
1. Was Anne right when She said that the world would not be interested in the musings of a thirteen-year-old girl?
Ans. Anne has been proved very wrong because her diary became one of the most widely read books of the world and it has been translated into many other languages. In other words, the world was wonderstruck over her musings.
Ans: No she was not right when she said that the world would not be interested in the musings of a thirteen-year-old girl. She wrote the diary which was published under the name “The diary of a Young girl”. The diary was originally written in Dutch language and was translated into many world languages. It became one of the world’s most widely read and famous books. There are also several films and television productions based on the dairy. It is considered therefore as the work of a mature and insightful mind.
2. In which language was The Diary Of Anne Frank originally written?
Ans. The diary was originally written in the Dutch language. Subsequently, it was translated into many other languages of the world.
Ans: Anne’s diary was originally written in Dutch.
In her first essay, Anne writes that talking is a student’s trait and justified her talkativeness by explaining that it was in her genes because her mother was also talkative.
3. Why does Anne need to give a brief sketch about her family? Does she treat Kitty as an insider or an outsider?
Ans. Anne thinks that nobody will be able to understand her musings if she goes straight to the topic. That is the reason why she thinks it necessary to give a brief sketch of her family. She does not treat Kitty as an outsider but a very intimate insider with whom she can share her innermost feelings and vicissitudes.
Ans: Anne gives a brief sketch of her life because no one shall understand the story that she writes on the dairy Kitty. Moreover, a good introduction helps in drawing the reader’s attention to the topic. It gives background information about writing. By providing a brief sketch of her life, Anne gives an overview of her family, her relatives, and her age. This helps the reader to develop a connection with the author. She treats Kitty as an insider because she doesn’t want to jot down the facts the way most people would do, but she wants the dairy to be her friend and is ready to confide in it.
4. How does Anne feel about her father, her grandmother, Mrs Kuperus and Mr Keesing? What do these tell you about her?
Ans. Anne loves all of them except Mr Keesing. She calls her father the most adorable father she has ever seen. She often remembers her grandmother and misses her too much. She owns also an intimate relationship with Mrs Kuperus as they are both in tears when they part each other. So far Mr Keesing is concerned, he always remains annoyed with her because she talks too much. She calls him an old fogey. Ann’s analysis of these characters shows that even at a young age she happens to be a good judge of human character.
Ans: She feels that her father is the most adorable father she has ever seen. Her statement, no one would understand her intensity of love for her grandma, tells that she loved her grandmother gravely. Moreover, the touching gesture of lighting up one candle for a grandmother on her birthday is also a poignant reminder of the love for grandma. She often misses her grandmother after death.
Mrs Kuperus. the headmistress is also dear to Anne. Both Anne and Mrs Kuperus were in tears when they departed from each other at the end of the year with a heartbreaking farewell.
Mr Keesing is her Maths teacher whom she calls an old fogey person. Anne was fond of talking too much. It can be assumed that like all strict teachers Mr Keesing thought talkativeness as a distraction for study and was annoyed with Anne. He punished her to write an essay on ’chatterbox’, the person who talks much.
5. What does Anne write in her first essay?
Ans. In her first essay, Anne writes that talking is a student’s trait. She also writes that she will try to keep it under control but she can’t do so because her mother also talked as much as she does. She means to say that talking is her inherited trait and it is not much you can do about inherited traits.
Ans: In her first essay, titled ‘A Chatterbox’, Anne wants to come up with convincing arguments to justify the necessity of talking. She writes that talking is student’s trait and would never be able to cure herself of the habit since her mother talks as much as She does. She argues that it is not easy for a person to leave inherited traits.
6. Anne says teachers are most unpredictable. Is Mr Keesing unpredictable? How?
Ans. Anne says teachers are the most unpredictable creatures on the earth. Mr Keesing proves to be very unpredictable. He seems to be a strict disciplinarian at first. But when Anne comes out with the unbeatable argument in the essays assigned to her by him as a punishment for talking in the class. Mr Keesing changes his attitude towards her. He now allows her to talk in the class.
Ans: Mr Keesing, the Maths teacher assigns Anne to write some essays as a punishment for her being talkative throughout lessons. She is asked to write an essay on A chatterbox’. This way he tries to play a joke on her but when she writes her last essay in verse form Mr Keesing Is impressed by her talent that he likes the essay and reads it to the whole class. Finally, he allows her to
talk in the class and does not assign any extra homework. This is how Mr Keesing behaves in an unpredictable way.
Thinking About Language
I). 1. Do you keep a diary? Given below under ‘A’ are some terms we use to describe a written record of personal experience. Can you match them with their descriptions under ‘B’? (You may look up the terms in a dictionary if you wish.)
2. Here are some entries from personal records. Use the definitions above to decide which of the entries might be from a diary, a journal, a log or a memoir.
(i) I woke up very late today and promptly got a scolding from Mum! I can’t help it − how can I miss the FIFA World Cup matches?
(ii) 10:30 a.m. Went to the office of the Director
01:00 p.m. Had lunch with Chairman
05:45 p.m. Received Rahul at the airport
09:30 p.m. Dinner at home
(iii) The ride to Ooty was uneventful. We rested for a while every 50 km or so, and used the time to capture the magnificent landscape with my Handy Cam. From Ooty we went on to Bangalore.
What a contrast! The noise and pollution of this once − beautiful city really broke my heart.
(iv) This is how Raj Kapoor found me − all wet and ragged outside R. K. Studios. He was then looking for just someone like this for a small role in Mera Naam Joker, and he cast me on the spot. The rest, as they say, is history?
II). Match the compound words under ‘A’ with their meanings under ‘B’. Use each in sentence.
II. Now find the sentences in the lesson that have the phrasal verbs given below. Match them with their meanings.
(i) plunge in : speak or write without focus
(ii) kept back: stay indoors
(iii) move up: make (them) remain quiet
(iv) ramble on: have a good relationship with
(v) get along with: give an assignment (home work) to a person authority (the teacher)
(vi) calm down: compensate
(vii) stay in: go straight to the topic
(viii) make up for: go to the next grade
(ix) hand in: not promoted
(i) plunge in − go straight to the topic
Ans. Since no one would understand a word of my stories to Kitty if I were to plunge right in, I’d better provide a brief sketch of my life, much as I dislike doing so.
(ii) kept back − not promoted
Ans. The reason, of course, is the forthcoming meeting in which the teachers decide who’ll move up to the next form and who’ll be kept back.
(iii) move up − go to the next grade
Ans. The reason, of course, is the forthcoming meeting in which the teachers decide who’ll move up to the next form and who’ll be kept back.
(iv) ramble on − speak or write without focus
Ans. Anyone could ramble on and leave big spaces between the words, but the trick was to come up with convincing arguments to prove the necessity of talking.
(v) get along with − have a good relationship with
Ans. I get along pretty well with all my teachers.
(vi) calm down − make (them) remain quite
Ans. Even G.’s pleading advances and my angry outbursts can’t calm them down.
(vii) stay in − stay indoors
Ans. I thought of this saying on one of those days when I was feeling a little depressed and was sitting at home with my chin in my hands, bored and listless, wondering whether to stay in or go out.
(viii) make up for − compensate
Ans. This birthday celebration in 1942 was intended to make up for the other.
(ix) hand in − give an assignment (homework) to a person in authority (the teacher)
Ans. I handed it in, and Mr Keesing had nothing to complain about for two whole lessons.
III. 1. Here are a few sentences from the text which have idiomatic expressions. Can you say what each means? (You might want to consult a dictionary first.)
1. Our entire class is quaking in its boots. ____________________________________________________________________________
2. Until then, we keep telling each other not to lose heart. ____________________________________________________________________________
3. Mr Keeping was annoyed with me for ages because I talked so much.___________________________________________________________________
4. Mr Keeping was trying to play a joke on me with this ridiculous subject, but I’d make sure the joke was on him.____________________________.
(1)Our entire class is quaking in its boots. Shaking with fear and nervousness
(2) Until then, we keep telling each other not to lose heart. Not to lose hope
(3) Mr. Keeping was annoyed with me for ages because I talked so much. Since a long time
(4) Mr. Keeping was trying to play a joke on me with this ridiculous subject, but I’d make sure the joke was on him. He was outwitted by her
2. Here are a few more idiomatic expressions that occur in the text. Try to use them in sentences of your own.
(i) caught my eye
(iii) laugh ourselves silly
(ii) he’d had enough
(iv) can’t bring myself to
(i) caught my eye
A small red car passing by caught my eye.
(ii) he’d had enough
Tahir had a hard time raising enough money build the orphanage he’d promised to build.
(iv) laugh ourselves silly
One girl said something funny, and we laughed ourselves silly.
(v) can’t bring myself to
I can’t bring myself to eat anything but chocolates.
IV. You have read the expression ‘not to lose heart’ in this text. Now find out the meanings of the following expressions using the word ‘heart’. Use each of them in a sentence of your own.
1. break somebody’s heart
2. close/dear to heart
3. from the (bottom of your) heart
4. have a heart
5. have a heart of stone
6. your heart goes out to somebody
1. break somebody’s heart − to upset somebody deeply
It has unfortunately become very easy these days to break somebody’s heart.
2. close/dear to heart − something or someone who is near and close to you
The drawing given to me by my little daughter is very close to my heart.
3. from the (bottom of your) heart − genuinely meaning or feeling something
He loved his son from the bottom of his heart.
4. have a heart − to evoke the feeling to help someone in distress
The poor beggar asked the rich man to have a heart and give him something to eat.
5. have a heart of stone − to not feel anything or any sentiment
The cruel landlady has a heart of stone as she beats up her children.
6. your heart goes out to somebody − to sympathise with someone else and understand his feelings and distress
My heart goes out to the little girl who lost both her parents in a car accident.
V. 1. Make a list of the contracted forms in the text. Rewrite them as full forms of two words.
I’ve = I have
2. We have seen that some contracted forms can stand for two different full forms:
I’d = I had or I would
Find in the text the contracted forms that stand for two different full forms, and say what these are.
(i) I’ve − I have
(ii) Doesn’t − does not
(iii) Won’t − would not
(iv) I’m − I am
(v) Don’t − do not
(vi) Can’t − cannot
(vii) it’s − it is
(viii) That’s − that is
(ix) I’d − I would
(x) Didn’t − did not
(xi) Who’ll − who will
(xii) You’re − You are
(xiii) We’ll − We will
(xiv) There’s − there is
(xv) He’d − he had
(xvi) Who’s − who is
(xvii) Haven’t − have not
(i) I’d − I had or I would
(ii) He’d − He had or he would
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