What greater truths can be learned from The Diary of Anne Frank?

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The greater truths that one can gain from reading Anne Frank's diary are that the human condition is much the same, no matter how one lives. Though Anne and her family live in terror, Anne's life and coming of age are marked by the same conflicts that characterize most people's journeys to adulthood. For example, she struggles to differentiate herself from her older sister, Margot, who is more obedient and subservient to her parents than Anne is. Anne's mother wants her to be more traditionally feminine, but Anne rebels and finds her own way of being. Anne determines that she would like to have a career if she survives the Holocaust, and she begins to chart her own path. She also has a romance with Peter and begins to think of herself as an independent person, separate from her family. Though she lives in a cramped annex and is afraid at all times of being discovered, Anne experiences some of the same conflicts and triumphs as other people of her age. The process of coming of age is universal.

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I would say that the the greatest truth to be learned from the diary of Anne Frank is the power of the human spirit. Anne, her family, and some of their friends, are forced to live hidden lives in a secret annex in Nazi-occupied Amsterdam. As Jews, they are in serious danger of being captured by the Germans at any moment and sent to their deaths in a concentration camp. Inevitably, this desperate situation generates enormous challenges for those forced to endure the hardships of life in such a claustrophobic environment.

Despite these circumstances, Anne is still able to retain a remarkable degree of humanity. Her spirit is so strong that she is able to lead a much more normal life than many people would in her situation. If anything, she becomes even stronger as the diary progresses; she achieves an admirable degree of maturity amidst the constant worry and the incessant prospect of discovery.

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