What are the reasons for Anne Frank's response to the love ethic in her novel, 'The Diary of a Young Girl'?
'I want to go on living after my death. And therefore I am grateful to God for giving me this gift...of expressing all that is in me.'
It was this remarkable talent of expression that Anne Frank possessed that has lead to the diary of her time in hiding becoming one of the most enduring and touching literary pieces of the twentieth century. As a thirteen-year-old child Frank's family and close friends went in to hiding in an attempt to escape persecution from the Nazi regime that was tormenting the European Jewish population. They shared the arduous and intense confines of the 'secret annex', a small series of rooms in the attic of Otto Franks workplace, for two years. Their hiding was only made possible by four Christian friends: Miep Gies, Bep Voskuiji, Johannes Kleiman and Victor Kugler who, through their actions, powerfully manifested the essence of the Christian love ethic.
Mathew 22:37-38 states, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself', and this has become the central teaching of Christianity. Love above everything. This belief does not say 'love your family as yourself' nor 'love the people of your religion as yourself' rather simply 'love your neighbor as yourself'. Consequently, love is measured by how you interact with those whom you are in opposition to. This is precisely the situation in which the four 'helpers', as Frank affectionately calls them, found themselves in as they were told by their government and society not to love the Jewish people, but they did so regardless. This is the primary catalyst for the overwhelming gratitude, admiration and awe that Frank expresses throughout her diary towards her heroes. A typical description of these...