Events Calendar

    Lifelong Learning Lecture: The World's Greatest Diarists

    The Diary has become an established literary genre, but it began spontaneously, used by everyday people, against the passing of life. Sometimes diaries were written in response to major events. Travel journals were often used later as the basis of a book.

    Letters, notebooks, memoirs, journals, and diaries provide a wide range of personal writing, from scientific notebooks to the classic diary, a chronological record of everyday life and the thoughts it provokes. Some authors were famous writers or people with lives in the public eye. Others were completely unknown. Leonardo da Vinci filled his diaries with the working of his fertile mind, using diagrams and sketches. Anne Frank told of her life hiding from the Germans during World War II. Dickens kept a secret diary recording in code his trips to visit Ellen Ternan. In “The Importance of Being Earnest”, Oscar Wilde joked about his diary: “I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.”

    This lecture looks at diaries of various sorts, providing a look into the everyday lives of men and women over the centuries.

    Come in person to the Framingham Public Library or stream live on YouTube at