The Diary of a Young Girl | Study Guide

Anne Frank

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The Diary of a Young Girl | May 20–June 5, 1944 | Summary

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Summary

May 20–May 25, 1944

Anne Frank doesn't talk about Peter van Daan in this section; she has too many other things to worry about; and besides, she now finds him disappointing, although she doesn't say why. A toppled vase drenches her pile of schoolwork and some of her books, upsetting Anne so much that she bursts out in German for the first time in months rather than the Dutch she had learned during all the years in Amsterdam.

In Amsterdam, it's now hoped and believed that the British will invade soon. In the Secret Annex, the residents are horrified to learn that the Nazis aren't the only persecutors; antisemitism has cropped up all over Holland during the years of German rule. Mr. van Hoeven, the man who supplied the Annex with potatoes, has been arrested for hiding two Jews in his house. The residents' food supply will become even more limited than ever. And could Mr. van Hoeven's arrest mean that they will be next?

May 26–June 5, 1944

In her entry for May 26, Anne is at a new low. She is exhausted by the constant tension she and the other residents experience as they shuttle back and forth between simple moments of humor and joy and the "fear" and "despair" that the news of the war inspires. Anne deeply appreciates Mr. Kleiman and Bep's efforts on the residents' behalf, but she is also jealous because they have lives in the outside world, while she remains in hiding. The Secret Annex is swelteringly hot, and the sewage drains keep clogging. Mouschi, the cat, has stopped using the litter box. The food is awful and everyone is tense. Money is running out. On June 5 Anne says, "The bottom of our black money box is in sight. What are we going to live on next month?" Above all, Mr. van Hoeven's arrest has made everyone "more frightened." Despite these problems, according to Anne, "We still love life."

Analysis

On May 26, Anne mentions that the "Jewish question" is "discussed in detail by everyone in the house." The Jewish question was essentially a euphemism for "What should we do about the Jews, and should they/must they be allowed to live here?" Should they be allowed to remain apart or assimilate, or be absorbed with full rights into European countries, or should a Jewish state be established?

The fate of the Jewish occupants of the Secret Annex troubles them, even as they hope the war will end and they will survive. They do not know what the situation will be like in the Netherlands with the Dutch Christians.

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