The Anne Frank House’s traveling exhibition “Let Me Be Myself – The Life Story of Anne Frank” will be displayed at UNESCO from 31 October to 4 November 2017 during the 39th General Conference. The exhibition highlights the life story of Anne Frank, linked to contemporary stories of exclusion and discrimination, as told by youth from various backgrounds and with diverse identities. It will be presented as part of a side-event dedicated to the prevention of violent extremism.
From her birth in 1929, throughout her childhood in Germany and the Netherlands, and her life in hiding in Amsterdam during the Second World War, the exhibition shows Anne’s path until her death in the concentration camp of Bergen-Belsen in 1945. The exhibition pays special tribute to the legacy of her diary and her father’s efforts in preserving her story and with it that of millions of Jews, who have perished in the Holocaust.
Beyond Anne, the exhibition also offers insight into the wider historical context of her personal life, and that of the people surrounding her, by carefully explaining the Nazis’ rise to power, the Second World War and the persecution of the Jews.
The exhibition also gives a voice to young people of today, and connects Anne Frank’s story to contemporary experiences of exclusion and discrimination, and to the dangers of propaganda and hate speech. In 1970, Otto Frank said: “We cannot change what has happened. All we can do is learn from the past […]. Everyone has an obligation to fight prejudice.” The exhibition encourages visitors to reflect upon their own perceptions of others and themselves, and how modern societies can build the resilience of young people against ideologies that seek to incite hatred and violence.
The exhibition marks the first collaboration of the Anne Frank House with UNESCO and is supported by the Delegation of the Netherlands to UNESCO.