Sunday, June 24, 2007

A Complete Guide to Franz Kafka

Franz Kafka was an extremely talented, but ever self-critical 20th century writer. Most people know of his greatness, but very few truly understand the man. I have done decades of research to better understand Kafka, and with this article, I will communicate my insight to all you dumbasses. Enjoy!

If I had to use one word to describe Franz Kafka, I would use the word Kafkaesque. If I had to use two words to describe Franz Kafka, both words would be Kafkaesque. Kafkaesque is just that appropriate.

The sheer fact that his name has been turned into an adjective shows just how important his novels and short stories have become. For instance, you will never hear any scenario described as Louis Lamour-esque. Nor will you ever hear a phrase like My world is Tom Clancy-esque. (And if you do, that is a good sign that you ought to invest in an M-16.)

Franz Kafka spent his days as an accountant, and his nights writing. Any free time that he had was spent being bitter about being an accountant. He also hated his father.

Kafka's work explores the notion that the world is an absurd place of interminable torture and death--whichever comes first. Many people believe that the oppressive power structures found in his work are metaphorical representations of his father, but there is mounting evidence that they are actually metaphorical representations of Frank Stallone.

Kafka's most famous works are The Metamorphosis (Die Verwandlung), The Trial (Der Prozess) and The Castle (Das Schloss)*. Out of these three works, only The Metamorphosis was published during his lifetime, as the other two were published before he was born.

In The Metamorphosis, Gregor Samsa wakes up one day to find his toast burnt. He also happens to be a cockroach**. The story describes the complexities of life as a piece of vermin. For example, he can no longer change the channel on the television since the remote control had yet to be invented. In spite of its rather depressing premise, the story ends happily when Samsa dies and his family joyfully moves to the country.

In The Trial, the protagonist Joseph K. is brought in on trumped up charges that he violently murdered his ex-wife and her young lover. The story is made all the more absurd when K and his best friend, a football player only identified as A.C., lead the police on a lengthy slow speed chase in a white Bronco. The situation looks hopeless for K. until Johnny Cochran arrives.

The Castle, unlike the previous two stories, is about a castle. In it, the hero is a surveyor in Prague, asked to survey a castle in a small town. The hero desperately attempts to gain entrance to the castle, but much like my quest for a bigger penis, the hero's search for truth and belonging is never realized.

As you can see, Kafka was clearly one fucked up dude.


*I know the German names too... I am so smart.
**Though it is never specified in the text, I am certain he is a German Cockroach.

3 comments:

miss kendra said...

this was not only a timesaver, but also edutaining. :D

jamwall said...

this post seems very jiggsyesque in tone.

slappy said...

It's double Jiggsy with a side of awesome.