Sunday Seniors: A Closer Look at Anne Frank in New Osher@Dartmouth Class

  • Participants listen to an instructor in an Osher@Dartmouth summer term course. (Courtesy of Osher@Dartmouth)

Valley News Calendar Editor
Saturday, May 05, 2018

Hanover The Diary of a Young Girl — and its author, Anne Frank — is beloved around the world.

“She’s a worldwide phenomenon,” said Phyllis Deutsch. “Anne Frank has become a kind of emblem for just about everything. Anything you want her to be, she becomes.”

During the Osher@Dartmouth summer term, Frank will be the subject of a course taught by Deutsch, a first-time Osher instructor. In “Anne Frank in the World,” students will read the diary and talk about it as a personal document, historical document and a literary document, “but also bring in some of the very interesting reworkings of the diary that have happened over the years,” Deutsch said.

These interpretations include graphic novels about Frank.

“She’s extremely popular in Japan,” Deutsch said. Do a quick search on online retailer Etsy and dozens of items containing her image and her words appear. “It’s absolutely astounding. Her face is everywhere.”

Deutsch retired last year after serving as editor-in-chief at University Press of New England and also is a lecturer at Dartmouth’s Institute for Writing and Rhetoric. She can’t say for certain when she first read The Diary of a Young Girl.

“I really picked it up fresh last year when I read it,” she said. “It was a new experience for me and I was quite astonished about it.”

One reason for that, Deutsh said, is that the writing itself is “extraordinary” considering Frank’s age.

“I think people will be astounded to discover that, she’s generally depicted culturally as this merry teenager, and in fact she was far more complex than that,” Deutsch said. “And she was spectacularly funny which also doesn’t come across in many interpretations of her work.”

Additional Classes

Here are a few summer term classes the Osher@Dartmouth staff is particularly excited about.

“A National Treasure: The Appalachian Trail” with instructor Greg Cook.

“Creative Greeting Cards Using Recycled Materials” with instructor Pat Cook.

“An Introduction to Svaroopa® Vidya Meditation” with instructor Annie Ross.

“Third Summer International Women’s Rights Film Festival” with instructor Valerie Miller.

“Backstage and Onstage with Opera North” with instructor Evans Haile.

Editor’s note: To learn more about Osher@Dartmouth classes and to register, visit http://osher.dartmouth.edu/, email osher@dartmouth.edu or call 603-646-0154. Liz Sauchelli can be reached at esauchelli@vnews.com or 603-727-3221.