Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Franz Kafka wrote the surreal

Franz Kafka
It is the birthday of writer Franz Kafka (1883), who is considered by critics to be among the greatest writers of the 20th century. Most of his work was published after his death in 1924, by his friend and literary executor Max Brod.

He is most remembered for his books such as The Metamorphosis (1915), about a traveling salesman who wakes up to find himself transformed into a bug, and The Trial (1925), about a man arrested and prosecuted for a crime which is never revealed to him or to the reader. His bizarre plots gave rise to the term "Kafkaesque," suggesting a surreal situation and unidentified impending danger.

Kafka was born in Prague when it was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire to a Jewish family. His father was the man in the community who ritually slaughtered animals according to Jewish dietary laws. Kafka had a lifelong fascination with the Jews of Eastern Europe but often seemed disconnected from Zionism. The Jewishness of his works remains the subject of debate among scholars.

He was educated in German and wrote most of his work in the language, though he also studied Czech and French literature. His writing was translated into English, and there are several English editions available.

Very little of his work was published during his lifetime. Kafka instructed that upon his death his unpublished work and his letters were to be burned but Brod ignored his instruction. Much of his work was published between 1925 and 1935, and translated into English later. A cache of letters he wrote to a lover was confiscated by the Gestapo during World War II. The location of the letters remains a fascinating project for literary sleuths.

Kafka's work is sufficiently ambiguous to allow broad interpretation. Writers see shades of anarchism, existentialism, Marxism, spiritualism, and Judaism in his writing.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Our specialties

Our specialties include Floridiana (Florida History, Florida Authors, Florida Related Ephemera), American History, Literature of the South, Military History (including, but not limited to, Civil War, Spanish-American War, World War I, World War II, Vietnam, Korean War), Children’s Literature, Maps, Leather Bindings and Rare & Unusual items.

We also have a wide variety of general stock, including a large Landscape/Gardening section, a great selection of Christian/Church History/Bible Study titles, Beat Literature, and much more. Please browse our extensive category list.

Appraisal service

Michael F. Slicker, is one of about 450 qualified members of the Antiquarian Booksellers Association of America, Inc., and its affiliate the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers.

Condition of the book, demand for it and history of comparable sales are among the factors considered in evaluating the value of a book. Other factors may apply as well.

Please contact us for more information regarding our certified appraisal services. We encourage you to visit our website, Lighthouse Books, ABAA

Florida Antiquarian Book Fair

Michael Slicker was the founding president of the Florida Antiquarian Booksellers Association and has served as chairman of its annual Florida Antiquarian Book Fair since its inception.

The 36th annual book fair is set for April 21-23, 2017 at The Coliseum in St. Petersburg.

The fair is the oldest and largest antiquarian book fair in the Southeast. Learn more about the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair and the Florida Antiquarian Booksellers Association.

  © Blogger templates Newspaper II by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP