By James Rolleston
No different 20th-century author of German-language literature has been as absolutely accredited into the canon of worldwide literature as Franz Kafka. The unsettlingly, enigmatically surreal international of Kafka's novels and tales maintains to fascinate readers and critics of every new iteration, who in flip proceed to discover new readings. something has turn into transparent: even supposing all theories try and acceptable Kafka, there is not any one key to his paintings. The problem to critics has been to provide a robust standpoint whereas taking account of prior Kafka examine, a problem that has been met via the participants to this quantity. individuals: JAMES ROLLESTON, CLAYTON KOELB, WALTER H. SOKEL, JUDITH RYAN, RUSSELL A. BERMAN, RITCHIE ROBERTSON, HENRY SUSSMAN, STANLEY CORNGOLD, BIANCA THEISEN, ROLF J. GOEBEL, RICHARD T. grey, RUTH V. GROSS, SANDER L. GILMAN, JOHN ZILCOSKY, MARK HARMAN JAMES ROLLESTON is Professor of German at Duke college.
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Additional info for Companion to the Works of Franz Kafka (Studies in German Literature Linguistics and Culture)
Since many of Kafka’s other stories were more or less fragmentary and sometimes embedded in diary entries, editorial decisions were always many and difficult. Brod acknowledged that he made compromises: for example, Kafka’s first story “Beschreibung eines Kampfes” (Description of a Struggle) exists in two versions; Brod initially published a “blended” text (1936), but later endorsed the special publication of the two versions on facing pages (1969). With the importance of establishing reliable, scholarly versions of Kafka’s texts becoming self-evident, a critical edition of all of them was projected by the S.
Kafka simply pushed back the walls that had until now imprisoned experience transmitted in and through literature. In Kafka banal everyday bourgeois reality and the miraculous interpenetrated each other and formed a unity that mystified and gave rise to incessant emotional and mental activity. As Kafka himself had noted after having written the text of his “breakthrough,” “Das Urteil” (The Judgment), his writing expanded immeasurably the scope of what was sayable, and thus significant (T 460). For that reason, Kafka appeared to be a revolutionary force of the greatest potency.
A LIFE OF READING KAFKA K 39 All that happens is the projection of one mind. Yet it appears to be occurring in a world external to that mind. Something closely analogous seemed to me to occur in Kafka’s narratives. The fantastic and distorting element in them indicated that the narrated events were expressions of movements and forces in the protagonist’s psyche. Yet, as in dreams, the narrative consciousness was never allowed to become explicitly aware of that. Like dreams Kafka’s narratives signified the self-alienation of the human mind.