Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Books - Anne Frank

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What an incredible book. A thought provoking read. I will go into more details in a few paragraphs time.

We are currently glamorising the 1940's and 50's but it was anything but, or at least for Europe.. While America were living a normal life perhaps even a glamorous life, (having been through the deep depression of the 30's), Europe was suffering under the Hitler regime. Perhaps this is why the current trend of vintage style is geared towards Hollywood and the beautiful people. Nothing wrong with that, who wants to dwell on the past when it was so traumatic? But we can't forget what happened and you could even say that making this era fashionable again is a way to remember the good as well as remembering those that suffered so that we could have what we have today. 

It's wonderful to see vintage events being held across the UK, War on the Line in Hampshire, Goodwood Revival near Chichester and Vintage Festival in Glasgow, there are so many more. They are educational and fun.

The beauty of the British public, they know how get on with life, through prosperity and austerity. Brits are not easily defeated. Another reason why this era is popular, the austerity which is happening now because of the recession (don't get me started on this), people are making do with what they have or if they need something 'new' they are rummaging through charity shops, getting bargains by purchasing second hand goods, what a way to force people to recycle and reduce consumerism lifestyle we live in today, (of course there are downsides to reduced purchasing on an economic level). People are getting creative. I have even heard of people growing their own food and going to meet-ups where they swap vegetables, jams etc. 

I love to read books of this era, Goodnight Mr Tom, War Horse, Back Home, Just Henry and now Anne Frank. These books appeal to me because they tell a story of challenging times but people also kept their 'chin up' and got on with it. It helps to keep today's difficulties in perspective. Even though we are going through a time of austerity we are not on rations, we have shelter most of us still drive a car, we are not surrounded by bomb sites etc. I know there are other factors and threats looming in today's economic crises, 1. because the world has never been through a global recession before and governments are finding it increasingly difficult to manage but then this post gets into politics and theories and it gets boring. So back to Anne Frank and her diary.

The forward of the book mentions there have been a number of versions that edited out information, names etc but the book which I bought as per the image, is the full version with a few names omitted. I am only a third way through the book but so far it is beautifully written, not many teenagers today could write so fluently, hell, not many adults either. So many things like school friendships, courtships are similar in today's world but the events this 'ordinary' girl lived through are quite extraordinary and unimaginable not one that I would want to live through. A diary which was written to ease boredom and to communicate in a way that she could not with her peers or parents, it starts off as though a story of her everyday life that she confesses, no one would possibly want to read. How wrong she was and she will never know how much this book has affected people. Anne Frank's diary will be passed onto my kids to read when they are ready, infact this book should be read in schools all over.

We can't and should not forget what happened because we do not want events like this happen again.

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