The Diary of a Young Girl: Novel Summary: March 8, 1944 – April 11, 1944

March 8, 1944 – April 11, 1944Anne dreams of Peter, even dreaming that they are kissing each other. On March 10, however, the mood changes, as Anne once more becomes acutely aware of the danger they are all in. They were having dinner when someone knocked on the wall next door. They had no idea who it might have been, and it made them all nervous and gloomy. Not only this, a man who has been supplying them with potatoes, butter and jam has been arrested.
Two days later, Anne reports feeling wretched and sad because Peter has been acting as if he is mad at her. She does not know why. She is in a state of confusion, half crazy with desire for Peter but also wondering why she should feel that way. She wonders when she will be at peace again. On March 16, she records her frustration at having to disguise her real feelings and maintain her air of confidence. She refuses to confide in her mother, father or sister. If it wasnt for the fact that her diary gives her an outlet for her thoughts and feelings, she would suffocate. She is tired of being treated like a child by her parents, and wants to be able to take some decisions for herself. She feels she has more maturity than most girls of her age.
On March 19 she records what she says was the most wonderful evening she has had since she wen to the annex. She and Peter had a long talk and managed to get through to each other, talking about their feelings for their parents, and for each other, and how things had changed since 1942. They acknowledged that when they first met, they had not liked each other. But Anne knows it is now very different between them and she cherishes the friendship. On March 22, she writes that true love may be blossoming between them, and she also reports on an exchange of letters between herself and Margot. Anne had thought that Margot was also interested in Peter, but Margot explains that she is not jealous of her sister.
On March 23, Anne confides to “Kitty” that she and Peter have had some honest discussions about sex. Anne also has to figure out how to deal with the adults in the annex who make countless remarks about her sudden friendship with Peter.
After an interlude (March 27) in which Anne confesses her amazement that the adults can talk so much about politics, she returns to the ramifications of her relationship with Peter. Her mother no longer likes her going up to see him, as she thinks Mrs. van Daan is jealous, and also because she thinks Peter is in love with Anne. It is yet another struggle between Anne and her mother. Also, Peter has taken to inviting Margot to join them upstairs. Anne writes appreciatively of Peters many good qualities.
Anne hears a Dutch politician say that after the war a collection will be made of diaries and letters dealing with the war. This inspires her to think that her diary may one day be published. She even thinks of writing a novel called “The Secret Annex.”
Then she describes the privations the Dutch people are having to endure: poor food supply, burglaries and theft, low morale, everyone wearing old clothes and run-down shoes. Acts of sabotage against the authorities have increased.
On March 31, she reports that the Russians are making progress on the Eastern front. She also knows that the Germans have occupied Hungary, which means that the one million Jews who live there are doomed. On April 3, she writes in detail about the food situation. In the annex, they live mostly on beans and potatoes.
On April 5, Anne reports on her ambition to become a journalist. She knows she can write, and she thinks that a few of her stories, which she has been writing in addition to her diary, are good. She wants to achieve something in life more than caring for a husband and children, and she thanks God for giving her a talent for writing. Writing allows her to express all her thoughts, her ideals and her fantasies.
On April 11, in the longest entry in her diary, she records a scare they had the previous Sunday. There is another break-in at the office and the men in the annex chase the burglars away. They go back upstairs, then at about eleven-fifteen at night, they hear footsteps in the house, coming up the stairs. Then there is a rattling at the bookcase that camouflages the entrance to the annex. Anne thinks they are done for and fully expects that the Gestapo has come to take them all away. The footsteps retreat, but a light has been left on, and the annex residents expect the police to return soon.? But no one does return, and the crisis passes.
They review and make changes to their routines, to lessen the risk of discovery. The incident reminds them all of the fact that “were Jews in chains, chained to one spot, without any rights, but with a thousand obligations.” She puts her faith in God, and also writes that after the war, she intends to become a Dutch citizen. She loves the country and the Dutch people.
These months show a rapid? growth in the range of Annes thinking, and she also continues to develop ideas and discuss topics in which she has previously shown an interest. She remains curious about her own body and about sexuality (March 24, 1944), and her diary remains absolutely vital to her well-being. In fact, she could not do without it. On April 11, 1944, when they are all concerned following the break-in that the police may return and find them, someone suggests that Annes diary should be destroyed. Anne writes, “Oh, not my diary; if my diary goes, I go too!” This shows once more that for Anne,? her diary is not just a pleasant amusement or diversion. It is central to her concept of herself and? her self-expression. Not to be able to record her thoughts or preserve her past thoughts seems like a death to her.
Anne also shows signs of a developing religious awareness. “God has not forsaken me, and He never will” she writes on March 31. She repeats the thought on April 11, following the break-in: “God was truly watching over us.” These comments are interesting because neither the Franks not the van Daans were especially religious. Before they went into hiding, the Franks rarely went to the synagogue and did not observe the Sabbath. So Anne, rather than simply following a family tradition, is thinking for herself and developing a religious faith.?