Character Analysis Mr. Düssel


Mr. Düssel, the elderly dentist who joined the group in hiding in November 1942, had formerly lived in Berlin and was married to a Catholic woman. He and his wife emigrated to Holland after the anti-Semitic riots of November 1938 which took place throughout Germany.

When Mr. Düssel went into hiding, his wife was informed that he had managed to get out of the country, so she never knew that her husband was in Amsterdam, near her, until the group was discovered by the Nazis. The information was conveyed to her then by a member of the Dutch group of "protectors."

Life in the confined quarters of the "Secret Annexe" had made Mr. Düssel rather difficult, and Anne describes him with great severity in her diary. If life in hiding was uncomfortable and annoying, it was much more so if one had to share one small room with a somewhat pedantic, older man. The experience obviously was not a pleasant one for either Anne or Mr. Düssel.

Mr. Düssel went with the other members of the group first to Westerbork and then to Auschwitz. He was later separated from the other men in the group and was sent back to Germany. He died at the Neuengamme camp.

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