There is a struggle between darkness and light, day and night that goes back to earliest antiquity. Kandinsky wrote about this ability to find the “in between” that would reconcile the two in his “Spiritual in Art.” But Germany? Its stuck in more than a touch of grey. Its the grey of faded and bleeding, washed death camp uniform stripes which unfailingly obliterates the individuality, the identity and the lives of those that wore them. This new Anne Frank wax sculpture in Berlin is just another German identification with the victims of war. However universalized you make her, Anne Frank was a jew. They are not the same; the German dead did not die in the same manner no matter how much grey ash they rub into their forehead or they effin’ swallow it by the spoonful. Its dust to dust but not mediated by the crematorium and whatever else caught their fancy. A different case.
In the museum, she is portrayed sitting at a desk, smiling, with a pen in her hand. The key to her diary, as well as a copy of her favorite book, “Uncle Tom’s Cabin,” and magazines relaying the latest trends in theatre, lie by her side.The exhibit also includes a simulation of her room, with flickering lights and background noise of voices and laughter. Read More:http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/153754#.T2KCKvVb76M
Also, for Holland, Frank is a convenient export industry. Great P.R. Netherlands had social amnesia, an inertia, a total indifference to the fate of its Jewish citizenry in WWII. Dutch police were no better than French ones, equally instrumental in rounding up of people in am ass public exercise in euthanasia. All these attempts at reality whitewashing and revisionism by making hay out of a few isolated cases is just an exercise in guilt pacification. Face it. Most were delighted the yids were gone. In this context, one can be quite correct is skewering official government and state tourism channeling the tourist trade too the Anne Frank House instead of say, an afternoon at Westerbork, the Auschwitz deportation center where Anne Frank said her last goodbyes to her native land.
But back to this prevailing sense of grayness that is uniquely German. Is it mourning or melancholy, a kind of reification of the shoah into the realm of the melancholic or serious and convincing mourning for the jews they wiped out? Mourning, in the Freudian sense is a form of alchemy emancipating one from the dead in an act of liberation. There is no shortage of holocaust memorials in Germany, but they act as decoration, short cuts to redemption. Also, mourning usually becomes melancholy because of feelings of guilt towards those who suffered; pious blaming and punishing oneself for their unfortunate demise.Truth is, the Germans really disliked them, — and by extension felt they, the jews, never really liked them either, even though they were neighbors, two solitudes.
So, the Germans can’t really get rid of them, they remain alive inside, like parasites engendering weird behavior. They are the shadows staring in the mirror, patches of opaque abyss. Anne Frank has been subsumed as traditional German melancholy. Like Anne Frank was part of a preparatory sketch for that melancholy mystic, Durer when he made Melencolia that germany has been trying to patch into the cultural fabric without much success. Durer never reached that heavenly sphere , his utopic palace and Germany’s abject reversal to become a paradise under the Third Reich and in general despite all the pretense of being a model to base reaching there on.
Anne Frank to Germany seems more about self respect, mending a narcissistic wound and sickness, an illness without a cure of organic unity, and no desire to restore and repair the real destruction caused by its own history, its own pathological “manifest destiny” and perversion of exceptionalism. With I suppose a baker’s dozen of exceptions, Germany has not and will not mourn for the jews, but it will keep using them to mourn for their homeland. Its an eternal mourning. The jews are a permanent bad rash, a displaced bone in their back. The will to power failed, Bach, and Beethoven and Goethe can no longer make art and life sing. There is a failure of the nerve, a spiritual nerve here; maybe Anne can smile like she does as a wax piece. Maybe they can make a robot of her so she can sing and dance and sign autographs. No, Germany never really rose from the ashes. It spirit is just drab gray. A hole that sucks in light and dark and spits it out onto corpses piled up like cordwood. Its the dregs of a spirit that won’t die. Unlike Bosch’s Wayfarer or Prodigal Son, this one just rots slowly in a gutter.
Neo-Nazi groups have targeted Anne Frank’s diary, questioning its authenticity in order to deny the full implications of the Holocaust. In response to these claims, the Netherlands Institute for War Documentation had tests performed on the paper, ink and glue used in the diary, which proved that it was written during the 1940s. Tests were also performed on Anne’s handwriting. The scientific study proved that Anne Frank’s diary was indeed written by Anne Frank during the Holocaust. The 1986 edition also includes transcripts of these tests, which verify the authenticity of the diary. Read More:http://www.sainthelena.us/school/classrooms/middle/language/images/Annefrank_theatre_guide.pdf
…Since the original Diary of a Young Girl was first published, it has been surrounded by controversy. Otto Frank’s decision to stress the story’s optimism and its universality left many Jewish readers feeling cheated. This feeling grew with the diary’s theatrical adaptation. In addition to being non-Jews, Goodrich and Hackett, the husband and wife playwriting team assigned to dramatize Anne’s story, were the screenwriters of popular Hollywood fare like The Thin Man and It’s a Wonderful Life. Goodrich and Hackett worked with playwright Lillian Hellman, Garson Kanin (the production’s director), and Otto Frank on their adaptation. Among other changes, their play removed many details about the Frank family’s Jewishn
“The fact that in this play the symbols of persecution are Jews is incidental,” said Garson Kanin. Otto Frank himself was quoted as saying, “It is not a Jewish book. So do not make a Jewish play out of it.” Though their first drafts emphasized the mischievous side of Anne’s personality, the final version emphasized her optimism and idealism….
…Meyer Levin, who had done so much to promote the book, wrote a play based on Anne’s diary and brought it to Otto Frank and Doubleday to produce. Through a series of complicated events, which are still in dispute, Levin was turned down. For decades, Levin continued to argue that his play, because it was less sanitized than the Broadway version and because it kept Anne’s Jewishness central to the story, was a more authentic adaptation of the diary. When Levin’s version of the script was rejected by several producers, it strengthened Otto Frank’s determination to accentuate the universal elements of Anne’s story…. ( ibid.)