The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank

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Topics for Further Study

(Nonfiction Classics for Students)

Read one of Frank's short stories. Do you think the story has literary merit? Do you believe, based on the story, that Frank would have been a good fiction writer? Are there stylistic or thematic similarities to The Diary of a Young Girl?

Imagine that Frank survived World War II and that you are looking forward to attending a lecture given by her at a local university. Choose any theme you deem appropriate and write her lecture. Consider how she may or may not have changed since her teenage years in the Secret Annex. Also speculate on what she would be doing today had she lived.

Research the Jim Crow laws, which sustained racial segregation in the American South during the first part of the twentieth century. Compare these laws to the Nazi's increasingly restrictive measures inflicted on Jews in occupied Holland. Draw conclusions about the similarities and differences that you identify.

Choose another figure from Frank's diary and write a two-week journal for that person. It is not necessary to write an entry for each day, but it is important to put some thought into which two weeks you select for your entries.

Create a graphic organizer in which you compare and contrast the personality and career of Adolf Hitler with those of three other world leaders, past or present. Based on your findings, what conclusions can you reach about leadership and power? Describe the kind of leader you would try to be if you were the president of the United States today.

Because Frank wrote her diary with no knowledge of her own fate, today's reader has a different perspective on many of Frank's comments throughout her diary. Compile a list of the prophetic and ironic comments Frank makes during the course of her writings. How does your perspective affect your reading of these passages? Describe how reading these excerpts makes you feel in comparison to how you feel when an author manipulates your emotions in a work of fiction.