Anne Frank in America- Leah Marks Digital Project Proposal

For my digital project, I would like to create an online exhibition chronicling the history of Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl as it has been experienced in the United States.  Anne Frank has simultaneously become one of the most beloved and controversial accounts of the Holocaust not only in the United States but around the world. My exhibition would chronicle the lifespan of the diary from its first publication in America to its influence in the modern, touching upon its use in schools, its role as one of the commonly banned books, and other media adaptations.

            For many students of the United States, Anne Frank’s diary is their first introduction to the events of the Holocaust.  It has been adapted into several movies, theater productions, and tv series.  It has also proved controversial and is appeared on several banned books lists.  My exhibition would touch on its use in classrooms, and why it is relatable to so many. As it continues to appear in conversations about antisemitism, politics, and education I believe it is important to be informed about the history of the book and the girl who wrote it.

            My exhibition would be made up of several parts.  Firstly, I would do an introductory panel chronicling the discovery of the diary, its first publications, and its introduction in America.  Secondly, I would include a gallery showing a number of the different editions that have been published over since the first publication in 1952.  Third, I would like to include a map showing some of the places the book has been banned the reasons why.  And finally, I would highlight some examples of movie, tv, and theater adaptions throughout the US.

            To create this exhibition I would mainly use Omeka or Storymaps and embed a google map to show the locations where the book has been banned.  The map would contain pins showing where the book has been banned and brief descriptions of why it was banned. The exhibition would also be comprised of several slideshows and perhaps a few embedded videos of other adaptations.  By using a variety of different types of displays I would hope to appeal to a wide variety of users and keep their attention throughout the whole exhibition. My hope for the digital exhibition is that it will not just touch upon the events of the holocaust but also upon the widespread appeal of this specific book. 

One Reply to “Anne Frank in America- Leah Marks Digital Project Proposal”

  1. Hi Leah,

    This sounds like a project that could be both quite interesting and find a broad audience. In particular, I appreciate the way that you detailed the different parts of the online presentation with a description of the gallery and the map.

    Given your interest in including a map of the book bannings, I think it makes a lot of sense to think about working with Storymaps as a platform for the project.

    If you are to run with this as your course project, it would likely be good to think a bit more on who your target audience for this would be and what kinds of communication or outreach you would need to do to get the resource to those users. I could imagine this being an interesting resource to be used alongside teaching the book when it’s taught in k-12 schools, if that is a potential primary audience for it, you might want to think about how to get it written in a way that it would be accessible to those students and you might also think about if you would want to create any model lesson plans or other kinds of resources that could make it directly usable for classroom teachers.

    Altogether, this is a great idea for a project, and I think it could have a lot of potential to be useful and used.

    Best, Trevor

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