Meyer Levin and the Diary By Prof. Lawrence Graver 6"x8" (254 Pages)Publisher: University of California Press, 1997
Ann Franks' Diary has been acclaimed throughout the world as an indelible portrait of a gifted girl and as a remarkable document of the Holocaust. For Meyer Levin, the respected writer who helped bring the Diary to an American audience, the Jewish girl's moving story became a thirty-year obsession that altered his life and brought him heartbreaking sorrow. What began as a warm collaboration between Levin and Anne's father, Otto Frank, turned into a notorious dispute that lasted several decades and included litigation and public scandal. Graver's book is based on hundreds of unpublished documents and on interview with some of the Levin-Frank controversy's major participants. It illuminates important areas of American culture: publishing, law, religion, politics, and the popular media.The "Red Scare" anti-McCarthyism, and the commercial imperatives of Broadway are all players in this book, along with the assimilationist pieties of American society in the 1950's. Graver also examines the different and often conflicting ways that people the world over, Jewish and Gentile, wanted Anne Frank and her much-loved book to be represented. That her afterlife has in extraordinary ways taken on the shape and implications of myth makes Graver's story - and Meyer Levin's - even more compelling.