Anne Frank

Frank, Anne, 1929–45, German diarist, b. Frankfurt as Anneliese Marie Frank. In order to escape Nazi persecution, her family emigrated (1933) to Amsterdam, where her father Otto became a business owner. After the Nazis occupied the Netherlands, her family (along with several other Jews) hid for just over two years (1942–44) in a "secret annex" that was part of her father's office and warehouse building. During those years, Anne kept a diary characterized by poignancy, insight, humor, touching naiveté, and sometimes tart observation. The family was betrayed to the Germans in 1944, and at 15 Anne died of typhus in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.

Anne's diary was discovered by one of the family's helpers and after the war was given to her father, the only immediate family member to survive the Holocaust. Edited by him, The Diary of a Young Girl (1947) became an international best seller and has been translated into English (1952) and 66 other languages. It was also adapted into a play (1955) and a film (1959). A critical edition was published in 1986, and a complete edition, containing almost a third more material, appeared in 1995 on the 50th anniversary of her death. Anne Frank also wrote stories, fables, and essays, which were published in 1959. The Franks' Amsterdam hiding place is now a museum, there is a foundation established by her father, and institutions devoted to her exist in New York, Berlin, London, and other cities.

See biographies by M. Müller (tr. 1998) and C. A. Lee (1999); M. Gies, Anne Frank Remembered (1988); R. Van Der Rol and R. Verhoeven, Anne Frank, Beyond the Diary: A Photographic Remembrance (1995); C. A. Lee, The Hidden Life of Otto Frank (2003); F. Prose, Anne Frank: The Book, the Life, the Afterlife (2009); M. Metselaar and R. van der Rol, Anne Frank: Her Life in Words and Pictures (2010); W. Lindwer, The Last Seven Months of Anne Frank (documentary film, 1988, and book, 1992); J. Blair, dir., Anne Frank Remembered (documentary film, 1995).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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