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Anne primps before joining Peter in his room. When the other characters see her trying to make herself look nice, they know she is going to see Peter.
At the beginning of the play, Anne and Peter argue a lot and generally do not get along. However, when Anne starts to get to know Peter better, a child-like romance starts to blossom. Anne begins to visit Peter in his room. Some of the other adults do not approve. “Anne and Peter’s burgeoning friendship causes tensions between their mothers; Mrs. Van Daan has been making insinuations about what is going on when Anne visits Peter in his room after dinner” (enotes summary, act 2).
They think it is improper for the young girl and boy to spend time alone together. They also disapprove because Anne spends time primping to look her best before joining Peter in his room. It makes the relationship seem more girl/boy like.
In her room, ANNE too is getting dressed. She stands before the mirror in her slip, trying various ways of dressing her hair. MARGOT is seated on the sofa, hemming a skirt for Anne to wear (Act II, Scene 2, p. 419).
The adults are the ones that seem to disagree with the behavior. Mrs. Frank in particular says she wishes that Anne wouldn’t “expose [herself] to criticism” by meeting Peter alone (p. 419). Yet the relationship is innocent and sweet, and even when Anne and Peter do kiss it is in an experimental, childish fashion.
Note: Page numbers are from the 2005 Holt text Elements of Literature, Second Course.
Citation: Beers, Kylene. Elements of Literature. Austin [Tex.: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 2005. Print.
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