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Hitler's Daughter By Damien Chinnery
Transcript of Hitler's Daughter By Damien Chinnery
In the story there are four children: Anna, Ben, Mark and Little Tracey who everyday wait at a bus stop to go to school. Every day they play a game called: The Story Game, while waiting for the bus. They choose a character and make up a story about them. One day the make up a character about Hitler’s Daughter, named Heidi. The book is revolved around modern day Australia and WWII in Germany as Anna tells the story about Heidi and all her adventures. However, the story seems too detailed and realistic to be imagined.
Throughout the story the conflict is mainly Man VS Society, however, there is also a little Man VS Man conflict in the book as well. The Man VS Man conflict is mainly between Germany and Russia. In Anna’s story Heidi is faced with a major problem, she doesn’t know her father at all. She calls him Duffi, and in her eyes she thinks he is the nicest, greatest man in the world. However, as we know from history, Hitler was really quite a horrible man. As soon as Heidi realises her father does not want anyone to see her because of her ugly appearance of birthmarks and limping legs, she wonders why and starts to face reality. She also wonders about the Jews and why they suffered. Sooner and sooner throughout the story Heidi realises who her father really is, and what her father wants to do with the human race. At the end of the story she realises that her father does not truly love her.
Present Day Rural South East Australia
On page 132 it says “And then they came out to Australia.’ Anna’s voice was stronger again. Mark Blinked ‘Australia? You mean here!’” So it is evident that the story is set in Australia. Throughout the story, the story continually states rural aspects such as cows, floods and bumpy dirt roads, which obviously gives an indication that it is a farm setting. On page 1 it states “The cows in Harrison’s paddock were wet and brown and mournful. Raindrops dripped down their noses as they huddled their backs to the wind.” Also on page 1 it says “Wallaby Creek”, so the story is set in the imaginary place Wallaby Creek.
Nazi Germany WWII (Anna’s story)
- is Hitler’s daughter who is the main character in Anna’s story. She is a young child who is his hidden from public because of her appearance.
• Adolf Hitler-
is Heidi’s father who is a politician and the dictator of Nazi Germany.
• Fraulein Gelber-
is the main person who takes care of Heidi during the war under the command of Hitler. She is nice, down to Earth and she forms a special bond with Heidi.
• Frau Leib
- is also a person who takes care of Heidi later in the story. She is has a wacky personality and knows how to cook as she is a farm girl.
• Johannes Wilhem Schmidt
- is the son of Frau Erna Schmidt. He is a nice boy who looks after Heidi near the end of the book.
• Frau Erna Schmidt
- is a woman who rescues Heidi after she is badly hurt near the end of the book.
By Damien Chinnery
Exposition and Rising Action
Point of View
Quotes 1 and 2
Climax and Resolution
Modern Day Australia
- the person who tells the story about Heidi.
- a friend of Mark who listens to the story, but who is heavily into boy stuff and violence, as he tries to add more violence to the story.
- a friend of Ben who also listens to the story, and has a keen fascination in Anna’s story and keeps on persisting her to tell it. He is also the main character.
- is Anna’s little sister who also has a keen interest in Anna’s story.
- is the school bus driver, and the children think she is a little “crazy”.
- is a school teacher who answers some of Mark’s eager questions referring to Anna’s story.
- is also a teacher, who teaches Anna, Mark, Ben and Little Tracey as their core teacher.
Anna’s story Nazi Germany during WWII (1939-1945)
In Anna’s story, her story is set during WWII which went from 1939-1945. On page 7 the story states “Anna hesitated. It’s…..it’s about Hitler’s daughter,’ she announced. ‘Hey cool,’ said Ben. ‘Who’s Hitler?’ demanded Little Tracey. ‘He was this bloke in World War Two,’ explained Ben.” So it is evident that the story was set in WWII. Also throughout the story, the story mentions many historical descriptions of WWII the reader can imagine what it was like for Heidi. These paint mental images of bunkers, tanks and rubble, etc.
An exposition is the start of the story when it explains the setting, plot and characters. In Hitler’s Daughter we learn that the setting is in rural Australia. The main characters are Anna, Ben, Mark and Little Tracey. The plot is when Anna tells a story about Hitler’s Daughter and from there the story escalates and begins.
Modern Day Australia
As Anna tells the story, it begins to become more detailed and realistic, far too much so to be imagined. Mark gets more fascinated by the story and starts to wonder about all kinds of things referring to the story.
Nazi Germany WWII
Heidi as well begins to wonder, however, she wonders about her father and why she is kept away from publicity. Also about the Jews and why they were different and what happened to them. Step by step she begins to find out more and realise who her father really is and what he has done.
Modern Day Australia
The climax of the story is when Anna tells and finishes the story to Mark, Ben and Little Tracy on page 130. However, Mark is still faced with problems and wonders.
Nazi Germany WWII
The climax of the story is when Heidi decides to forget and separate herself from her father. She is walking with a solider and they are attacked and his arm comes off. Heidi then runs for her life as a tank erupts into flames and she falls into a crater on page 127. She gets badly hurt and is in trouble.
Nazi Germany WWII
Heidi is in trouble and is helped by Frau Erna Schmidt and Johannes Wilhem Schmidt. Together they were sent to a refugee camp in the part of Berlin that the Americans controlled, and then from there they came out to Australia to live happily ever after where there was freedom. On pages 127-132, Anna explains to Mark and Little Tracey what happened to Heidi and the Schmidts.
Modern Day Australia
At the end of the book on page 136, Anna explains to Mark on the bus how on a day like it was (rainy and grey), Heidi told her granddaughter about Fraulein Gelber, Frau Leib and the Schmidts….. But it was just a story. This makes the reader consider that perhaps Anna’s grandmother was really Heidi and the imaginary story about Heidi was actually real. The author: Jackie French wants readers to wonder and find more truth about the slight possibility of Hitler having a daughter.
Point of View:
In Anna’s story the narration technique used is limited omniscient (third person). It is this because frequently throughout Anna’s story, Anna says, she said or she knew.
1. P.121: “
She hadn’t seen him since Berlin.
2. P.51: “
She would have liked to ask the soldier to stop the car so she could watch the goats….
3. P.64: “
She didn’t even make Heidi read pages from Duffi’s book.
4. P.11: “
Because she had a birthmark
5. P.129: “
She carried Helga till she died.
Modern Day Australia
In the general story the narration technique used is omniscient (author telling the story). It is this because frequently throughout the story the author is telling the story from a narrator view, telling the story by saying, Mark usually got to the bus stop first, for example.
1. P.1: “
It was raining the day that Mark first heard about Hitler’s daughter.
2. P.67: “
The bus rolled and wandered through the puddles, then bumped up onto the bitumen.
3. P.103: “
Drip drip drip went the water as it drizzled from the bus shelter roof.
4. P.83: “
The flood smelt like wet socks.
5. P.104: “
Mark tried to empty his mind.
The genre of Hitler’s Daughter is historical fiction. It is historical fiction because the book is based on non-fiction events that happened in history (Nazi Germany WWII), but still has the fiction aspect of being based on imaginary characters and settings. Hitler was a leader during WWII, and the story is base around that, so it is evident that the book’s genre is historical fiction.
The theme of a story are the morals and the messages within the story. In Hitler’s daughter the book heavily sways towards the issues in society such as racism, discrimination, poverty etc. As Heidi is the daughter of German dictator Adolph Hitler, Mark wonders whether Heidi would grow up to be the same as her father, or if she’d choose to be good or evil. In the book Mark asks the question: “‘Well, say someone’s father did something really evil … like Hitler, or Pal Pot,’ he added hurriedly. ‘Would their kids be evil too?’” this relates to theme of the story. Also throughout the book there is a combined theme of courage, perseverance and compassion, as Heidi never gives up, tries to help those who are less fortunate than her and has the strength to overcome the unacceptance her father has for her and take a risk unknowing the outcome.
Overall, I found Hitler’s Daughter an extremely fascinating book. As I am already interested and curious about history, I found Hitler’s Daughter not only clever but emotionally attaching as the author wrote a story of Hitler from a different perspective. However, Hitler is just the tip of the iceberg.
As I continued to read, the more I learnt. Within the book, I believed there was a much deeper and powerful message and moral which hid between the lines. It was indeed all the global issues we have in our modern day society and how we do or do not resolve them. The author, Jackie French, wants readers to try and relate to these issues such as racism and discrimination, and ask questions and wonder about how they can be resolved, just like how Mark does in the story.
In Australia, the relevance of the morals and messages in the story to me is unusual in a way, because in Australia we are not really exposed to that level of racism and discrimination as in the story. Despite this, in the past, European Australians have been known to have a horrific history with the native Aboriginals.
Overall I found Hitler’s Daughter an extremely fascinating and a clever excellent book.
Quotes 1 and 2:
1. P.90 “
‘If everyone – or almost everyone – thinks something is right, but you know it’s wrong, what do you do then?’
This quote is important because it showcases the question and problem within our society of taking a stand and being independent. Mark ends his question with what do you do then. You must stand up for yourself, and be independent. In our society many people are not moving away from the crowds and being different, just because no one else agrees or thinks the same.
2. P.119 “
….. the sausage dry and tasteless. Heidi wondered if it was made from horse meat. Frau Leib had told her that that was all they had in the city now.
This quote is important because it showcases how desperate people were to survive during the war. During WWII, there was a low supply of resources, let alone food. So to prevent starvation, people started eating whatever they could find, which included eating endangered animals in zoos, horses and many more.
Quotes 3,4 and 5
3. P.68 “
But what I mean is, are some people better than others……
This quote is important because it showcases the issue of racism and discrimination. Mark is confronted by many morals while listening to Anna’s story. Treating someone differently because of their gender, religion or race is unacceptable in our modern day society, and everyone is equal and should be treated fairly no matter what.
4. P.69 “
‘Ben's dad says that Asians are all criminals. But that can't be right can it? I mean how do we know?’
This quote is important because it also conveys issues of racism and discrimination, and even false and stereotypical assumptions some people have of other races.
5. P.123 “
‘Take her away,’ said Adolf Hitler. ‘Now! Do you hear me? Now!’
This quote is important because it showcases the feelings Hitler has for his daughter….none. After all Heidi has been through, all she wants is a father, someone who can love her, not reject her because she is not “perfect”. When she was hidden from everything she saw her father as a great man who loved her, after her rejection she faced the truth. On page 11 it explains why Hitler had no love for her; she had an ugly birthmark, brown hair, was short and had a limp because of her uneven legs. These characteristics were the opposite of his “perfect race”.
Quotes 6 and 7
6. P.74 “
‘Well, say someone’s father did something really evil … like Hitler, or Pol Pot,’ he added hurriedly. ‘Would their kids be evil too?’
This quote is important because it questions the idea that if some person did some evil things, then their children would grow up to be evil as well. In the story, Heidi actually helps those less unfortunate Jews, by preparing a barn on pages 98-99. She cleaned out the old henhouse, she spread down new straw and took jars from her cellar, in case any Jews came needing help. Good can come from evil. From Hitler’s dictatorship the world has learned to treat others equally.
7. P.85 “
‘But what if he did take it from the Aboriginal people... just suppose. It wouldn't be our fault, would it?’
This quote is important because it encourages the reader to think about how the Aboriginals were discriminated against, by the early Australian settlers from the late 1800’s til 1970, when the Aboriginals were forced from their land. Recently the Australian government apologised for taking the land, culture, and even the children from the Aboriginal families during this time. Mark was worried that he could be blamed for something he didn’t do and at the same time felt bad that maybe, his great, great grandad had stolen their farm from the aboriginals and therefore his family was responsible. Was this the right thing, this is something for the reader to decide.