To What Extent George Steven’s Adaptation of The Diary of Anne Frank is Historically Accurate

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Summary of source A:

This George Steven’s production of The Diary of Anne Frank is an adaptation on the diary Anne wrote. The movie begins with Otto Frank visiting the building where he and his family resided. He sees Mr Kraler and Miep who then join him is the annex where Miep shows him Anne’s Diary. She starts with a narration of how they had left their lives and gone into hiding wearing as many clothes as possible to not arouse any suspicion with suitcases. There are two families living in the annex, with Mr and Mrs Van Daan in the upstairs room, Anne and Margot in another, Pieter in the attic of the annex and Mr and Mrs Frank in the living room. When they arrive, there are rules that have been established by Mr Frank to not notify the people downstairs working in Mr Kraler’s spice shop of their presence. They cannot move around between nine and 5:30, the office hours and they must take their shoes off.

In the movie Mr Krale brings a box containing Anne’s film star pictures and in there is a diary. Anne is very close with her father but not with her mother. The children still have lessons and we learn that Anne wants to study music in Paris and that she plays the piano.

During their stay, Miep brings them a radio, which they use in order to listen to music, and news instead of waiting for Mr Kraler to bring them the information, which they find out, is not very accurate. Mr Drussel joins the two families in the annex and ends up sharing a room with Anne moving Margot into the living room with her parents. That night Anne has a nightmare and cannot stop screaming, her mother tries to comfort her but she asks for her father instead, upsetting her mother. Over the course of the year, the air raids worsened, but they still celebrate Hanukah where Anne gives everyone a present. On the same night, someone breaks in and Moushi knocks something over making the robber run away leaving the door open in his haste. Mr Frank has to go down and close the door with Pieter and Anne following him. Someone tries to check why the door is still opened whilst Mr frank is behind the door causing Anne to faint in Pieter’s arms forcing him to carry her back up to the annex Mr frank following closely after.

Mr Van Daan would like to sell his wife’s coat for cigarettes. Anne one day is angry after her mother has told her she must start being more thankful for their safety and storms of, Pieter following her. They become friends and start meeting every night. Mr Kraler was admitted twice into hospital during their stay in the annex. They find out that Mr Van Daan has been stealing food and the night he gets caught Mrs Frank tells him that he wants him out of the annex. That same night they hear news of the allies landing. Their vegetable man is arrested for hiding Jews making their food source even scarcer. The police come after them, they believed the thief had been the one that had reported them. They were sent to Poland where they were separated into genders. Otto was in Auschwitz and the only survivor of the annex members. When the police had come, Miep had been out of the city looking for food.

Source’s usefulness:

It is a visual representation of Anne Frank’s diary, The Diary of a young girl.

Summary of Source B

Anne frank received her diary on her 13th birthday and one of her first entries in it were about her birthday and how it was spent. We learn about her childhood and how the Jews were treated by the Germans and some of the rules they had to abide by. She writes a few entries about her day to day life before moving into the annex the day after Margot received a letter from the S.S. when they leave they pile clothes onto their bodies so as to not draw attention with their suitcases. They left behind them a false trail to Switzerland, which Mr Van Dan later confirmed, has worked after him and his family moved into the annex. Anne is criticized by the adults but starts to get along more with her mother and sister whom she was never close total there were 4 break-ins, 2 of them where there were contents stolen from the office.

Upon Mr Drussels arrival, he tells Anne about the outside world making her think about how lucky they were to be on the inside. They exceed their electricity rations when Hanukah and St Nicholas’ day is approaching, they celebrate these two holidays on the same day. Mr Drussel to Mr Frank’s dismay writes to his wife who sends him a package of food, which he does not share. Anne begins to confide with Peter making Margot jealous because she has no one to share her feelings with. Anne becomes closer to peter and thinks of him often. Their food smuggler is arrested and they are forced to eat bad food through the black market ration books. Excitement builds after D-Day and following the assassination attempt on Hitler. Anne enters a couple of more entries and then they end.

Source’s usefulness:

It is a primary source representing the feelings of a young Jewish girl who has had to give up so much.

Summary of source C:

Anne and seven others hide in the secret annex at Prinsengracht 263 in Amsterdam. They hide for more than 2 years. On the sixth of July 1942 Anne and her family of 3 arrived at the annex after her older sister |Margot was called up to the work camp. Otto Frank was a businessperson in Amsterdam. After the threat of war started to increase, he and his family tried to immigrate to England or to America but their attempts failed. A week after the frank’s arrival in the annex the Van Pels join them in the annex and in November 1942 a dentist, Frits Pfeffer joins them. They had to keep very quiet and are helped by some office workers. Miep and Jan Gies and Victor Kugler help them get food, clothes and books whilst helping them learn what is happening in the outside world. Anne had received a diary for her birthday shortly before going into hiding she started writing in it, she continued even during her time in hiding. In the beginning of their relocation into the annex Anne wrote short stories and quotations, she only started to keep, a ‘war diary’ after it had been advised on a British radio station.

She titled her diary ‘The Secret Annex’. On the fourth of august 1944, the eight were discovered and arrested along with their helpers Johannes Klienman and Victor Krugler. They were sent to different concentration camps. Otto Frank was the only survivor and he was encouraged to publish Anne’s diary after Miep had given him the remnants. He only received the news of his daughters’ death in July. He discovered a completely different Anne through her diary.

Source’s usefulness:

This article was written to inform people of the live of the Frank family. It adds that we did not receive from the book because it was written well after the time

Summary of source D:

Source D is a representation of the map that was hung in the annex. It is the same map that Otto Frank used along with the rest of the residents to track the course of the war

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Source’s usefulness:

The source shows us how the families residing in the annex used the information they learnt from the radio. It is a primary source and was used by the family.

Origin of Source:

This is a film adaptation directed by George Stevens, adapted from the Diary of Anne Frank, released 18 March 1959. Twentieth Century Fox distributed the Film.

Purpose of Source:

This adaptation is to visually show the Diary of Anne Frank’s life.

Value of Source:

It is valuable as it has credible distribution by the internationally known Twentieth Century Fox. It was directed by an Academy nominated and Award winning director.

Limitations of Source:

It only shows the feelings of this Jewish family. It has also been adapted therefore is an extract of this young girl’s diary.

Evaluation of source A:

Origin of Source:

The Diary of a Young Girl was written by Anne Frank, translated by B.M Mooyaart-Doubleday and published by Contact Publishing

Purpose of Source:

This diary was initially a wat for Anne to express her feelings about being in hiding and about those around her. After being encouraged to keep war journals Anne made this an agenda in her works. She edited it later so as to gain the understanding of those around the world

Value of Source:

It is a primary source with credible publication. The book appeared on many top book lists in the 20th and 21st century.

Limitations of Source:

It has been translated therefore some things from her original writings could have been changed. It is one sided and has a general feeling of the members residing in the annex, not all Jewish people during the Nazi reign.

Evaluation of source C:

Origin of Source:

This is an article from This was put up by Anne Frank House and accessed on the 15th of March 2018

Purpose of Source:

This article was written to give an overview of the Frank Family’s history and the other people who resided in the annex.

Value of Source:

The article was published on a site with a very good link to the history of the Franks, having their stories and pictures on their website.

Limitations of Source:

It was written at a later stage giving very little in the rest of the annex residents. It does not give a detailed version of their stay in the annex.

Evaluation of source D:

Origin of Source:

A map showing the map used by the residents of the annex to keep track of the course of the war. This article was published on the Anne Frank website and was accessed on the 15th of March 2018.

Purpose of Source:

The family used it to be able to keep a record of what was happening in the outside world.

Value of Source:

It has credible publication, having been put onto a prominent historical site that produces many informative articles. It is also a primary source that was used by the family.

Limitations of source:

In the years they spent out of the annex the map could have been tampered with. They might not have had all the information on the outside world.

Reflection of task:

What have you learnt through this research experience

I have learnt how to evaluate sources and how to look for relevant sources. I have also learnt how to manage my time more efficiently whilst working on such a big project.

How l have grown through this process

I have grown by managing my time better. I am also able to look at sources in a more analytical manner

How can l use this skill in the future

If l ever need to determine the usefulness of a source l now have the necessary skill to do so.

Historical accuracy of George Stevens' screen adaptation of The Diary of Anne Frank

The film adaptation of The Diary of a Young Girl directed by George Stevens is historically accurate. The film portrays historical events that appear in the World War II timeline. The feelings and emotions of fear described in her diary appear and are well represented on film by the chosen actors, the descriptions made by Anne of the annex have also been shown accordingly. Though it is historically accurate, the film omits and adds events that did not happen in the book. This film adaptation can be deemed historically accurate because of the reasons mentioned.

The film establishes a clear timeline with the events that are showcased, because of this, we can deem this adaptation as historically accurate. According to source A, we know that Mr. van Daan keeps a map of the course of the war. This map corresponds with the events that were actually happening in real life as we see in source D. George Stevens adds this into the film to show the events that were happening in the world so that we have an idea of when the events actually happened. Previously Mr. Kraler would relate to the families what was happening in the outside world until Miep brought them a radio.

With this they would listen to the news in the evening according to source A and source B. it is known that this radio would broadcast historically accurate news because the map would be updated according to the news, the families even celebrated the landing of the allies in Normandy which is known as historically accurate. The adaptation also clearly shows events from source B that is a primary source. The George Stevens' screen adaptation can be deemed historically accurate due to the showcased events that correspond historically with what was happening in the world at the time depicted and in the book.

In the adaptation, the feelings and emotions that Anne had depicted in the book are shown. The book being a primary source shows us the events of the period in time and feelings of the annex residents and these events were successfully depicted in the film adaptation. The film shows its accuracy through the way it is able to depict events that happened in the book and their historical accuracy. one of the very first scenes we see according to source A show how they had to wear many clothes and leave in the middle of the night so as to not spark the suspicion of their neighbours, we read of this again in source B.

The film not only shows its succession in creating an adaptation but also in creating a historically accurate one. This is shown through the decision to add scenes of policemen marching up and down the streets to show us the police state that they were living in which we see in source A. Stevens' continues to show us the film's succession in making a historically accurate piece by further adding scenes of marches and displays of Nazi reign in the outside world according to source A. The film does not only show events from the book as it tries to incorporate more of the story of the Frank family. This is seen in the beginning of the film where Otto is given the remains of Anne’s works by Miep. The success of utilizing the pieces of the book that depict historical events into the film adaptation makes it historically accurate.

Though the film adaptation is historically accurate, some things have been omitted from the book. The addition of every little detail of a book into a film adaptation is impossible however, some things could have been added into this film to make it more historical. the omission of the detail of the deaths of the annex residents does not give us a clear ending to their stories, it is understood from the film that Otto was the only survivor but it is not shown how as Source C informs. The lives of the annex members are not very well told either, there no clarification of their lives before the annex as in source C and in Source B. This does not make the film any less accurate historically however the addition of the above would have made the film better.

This George Stevens' film adaptation can be deemed historically accurate. We are given a clear timeline during the film and are shown through some scenes the historical accuracy of the film. The film succeeds in showing the emotions of the characters as is described in Anne's book. Even though some things have been omitted from the film it can still be deemed a success historically. The above reasons are why The Diary of Anne Frank was a successful screen adaptation and why it was historically accurate.

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