Harvard Lampoon apologizes for editing photo of Anne Frank onto woman in bikini

“We realize the extent of offense we have inflicted," the magazine's editors wrote.
Image: New York City's Museum Of Jewish Heritage Holds Press Preview For New Auschwitz Exhibition
A picture of Anne Frank is part of an exhibition at the Museum of Jewish Heritage, "Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away." in New York City.Spencer Platt / Getty Images

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By Ben Kesslen

The Harvard Lampoon has apologized for sexualizing Holocaust victim Anne Frank in a cartoon that showed her head on the body of a woman in a bikini.

The Lampoon, the school’s satirical magazine that was founded in 1876 and whose former staff members include Conan O'Brien and Lawrence O'Donnell, published the doctored image in a recent issue, sparking complaints.

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“Gone Before Her Time: Virtual Aging Technology Shows Us What Anne Frank Would Have Looked Like if She Hadn’t Died,” the headline above the picture said.

“Add this to your list of reasons the Holocaust sucked,” the magazine quipped.

Frank was 15 when she died in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in World War II. Her record of her experiences in the posthumously published “The Diary of Anne Frank” is an international bestseller.

The sexualization and mockery of Frank, a representative of the millions who died in the Holocaust, was condemned by many at Harvard.

According to the Harvard Crimson, the director of Harvard Hillel, Rabbi Jonah C. Steinberg, emailed the magazine’s editors, comparing the image to those that Nazis had published, and students circulated a petition on Facebook demanding accountability from the magazine for the cartoon.

On Tuesday, the Lampoon apologized, saying the image went over the line.

“We realize the extent of offense we have inflicted and understand that we must take responsibility for our action,” the editors of the magazine wrote. They also said the Lampoon “condemns any and all forms of anti-Semitism.”