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How Anne Frank's Diary Survived

Not only the diary but also the revisions that Anne had made as she dreamed of creating a novel and launching her career had miraculously survived. “This brilliant young girl revised her diary because she discovered that she had become a much better writer,” the novelist Philip Roth, who conjured up Anne in his novels The Ghost Writer, Exit Ghost, and My Life as a Man, has observed. “The fact that she rewrote it is one sign that, had she survived, she would have achieved an important literary career.” ...

Only two years had passed since the end of the war, but for many the book by the 15-year-old who had written that she still believed that “people are truly good at heart” already proved useful as a way to personalize the Holocaust. “Not only do you have a name and a face and a person in the case of Anne Frank, but you have a very well written diary. It is captivating,” Professor Deborah Lipstadt, author of Denying the Holocaust, tells LIFE. “She is a good writer and she knows how to express herself. She is expressing herself in something she doesn’t even know will see the light of day.”

Read entire article at Time Magazine