"What Are The Reasons For Anne Frank's Response To The Love Ethic In Her Novel, 'the Diary Of A Young Girl'" ?Accounts For Franks Reaction To The Helpers Actions.

1383 words - 6 pages

What are the reasons for Anne Frank's response to the love ethic in her novel, 'The Diary of a Young Girl'?'I want to go on living after my death. And therefore I am grateful to God for giving me this gift...of expressing all that is in me.'It was this remarkable talent of expression that Anne Frank possessed that has lead to the diary of her time in hiding becoming one of the most enduring and touching literary pieces of the twentieth century. As a thirteen-year-old child Frank's family and close friends went in to hiding in an attempt to escape persecution from the Nazi regime that was tormenting the European Jewish population. They shared the arduous and intense confines of the 'secret annex', a small series of rooms in the attic of Otto Franks workplace, for two years. Their hiding was only made possible by four Christian friends: Miep Gies, Bep Voskuiji, Johannes Kleiman and Victor Kugler who, through their actions, powerfully manifested the essence of the Christian love ethic.Mathew 22:37-38 states, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself', and this has become the central teaching of Christianity. Love above everything. This belief does not say 'love your family as yourself' nor 'love the people of your religion as yourself' rather simply 'love your neighbor as yourself'. Consequently, love is measured by how you interact with those whom you are in opposition to. This is precisely the situation in which the four 'helpers', as Frank affectionately calls them, found themselves in as they were told by their government and society not to love the Jewish people, but they did so regardless. This is the primary catalyst for the overwhelming gratitude, admiration and awe that Frank expresses throughout her diary towards her heroes. A typical description of these people is the exclamation of, 'Oh they're such good, noble people'. These reactions were formed as a direct result of the relationship with her mother and social climate of the time.Anne Frank and her mother did not get on at all and throughout her diary Frank expresses her extreme dislike and lack of love for her mother. 'There is one thing I cannot do, and that's to love Mother with the devotion of a child.' This hatred is expressed with her use of emotive language, 'I could easily slap her in the face, I don't know how it is that I have taken such a terrible dislike to her.' This is a confronting image of a young girl wanted to physically harm her mother, though it serves as an explicit indication of the hatred expressed towards her mother.This relationship with her mother, or lack thereof, is one of the primary factors that accounts for her reaction to the love ethic expressed by the helpers. It provides, for the responder, a point of contrast between the love and respect felt towards Gies, Kleiman, Kugler and Voskuiji and the hatred and disgust felt towards her mother. These people show such kindness and devotion to their friends, when Franks mother cannot even show affection to her...

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