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Franz Kafka

English 205

Marina Casto

on 26 February 2013

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Transcript of Franz Kafka

Franz Kafka Early Years Death As Kafka got older, around the year 1911 he tried to get away from Jewish religion and focused on learning more about Judaism and Zionism. Religion Franz Kafka has written literature from novels to short stories. Here is some of his most notable work:

Description of a stuggle – 1912
Meditation -1913
The Metamorphosis- 1915
A Country Doctor- 1919
A Hunger Artist- 1924
Amerika- This was the first incomplete novel first known as The Stoker by Kafka. It was published in 1924. Famous Works & Writings His personal life was raged with complications. His inhibitions and insecurities plagued his relationships. Love life In the middle of 1924, Kafka's health took the turn for the worst. He and his wife moved back into Kafka's house with his parents. A few weeks later he was diagnosed with advanced Tuberculosis. "It is often safer to be in chains than to be free." Franz Kafka was born July 3, 1883. He was born in Prague, capital of Bohemia, and died on June 3, 1924 in Berlin from tuberculosis. As a child, Kafka was the only male child in a family of six. His younger brothers died in infancy. His relationship with his parents was not great growing up and as an adult, his mother never understood what he wanted to do in life and his father was considered to be a very hard kind of man. Kafka’s father had a large influence in his writings though, within his writings you will generally see a very dominating power, which is how his father was in his life. Kafka had a strong education, he went to an elite academic high school and after he attended Charles Ferdinand University and pursued a career in law, studying art and literature on the side. Twice he was engaged to marry his girlfriend, Felice Bauer, before the two finally went their separate ways in 1917. He met Milena Jesenská-Polak in 1919, and some thought for the first time he was in love. Although she was already married and told him that she would not leave her marriage for him. In July 1923, Kafka retreated to the seaside resort of Müritz, accompanying his sister Elli and her family due to his falling health. There he met the nineteen-year-old Dora Diamant, who was working as a counselor at a nearby Jewish summer camp. The two fell in love and as he got sicker, she took care of him more and more. Being very protected. In 1913, he twice visited Felice Bauer in Berlin; but fidelity was not in his nature – in September he had a tryst with a Swiss girl, and in November he met one of Felice’s friends, Grete Bloch. In April 1914, Franz and Felice became engaged; which didn’t stop him from carrying on an intimate correspondence with Grete. His engagement to Felice didn’t last long, and it was broken off in July of that year.
On an interesting side note, after Kafka’s death, Bloch claimed that she became pregnant by him in the summer of 1914, bearing him a son who died at the age of six – all without Kafka ever finding out. Such claims, however, have come under attack by a number of biographers, and Bloch’s assertions are, at best, shaky. By:
Marina Casto
Tyler Mcloughlin
Kristyn Gould
Catherine McNabb Franz Kafka was Jewish and grew up in the Jewish culture. This was significant for his writings because many of the stories he wrote had something to do with his religion or an experience he faced because of his background culture. In many of his stories the theme was alienation and the struggle between his inner and outer self come from his flashback on the holocaust and the struggles he faced due to being Jewish. All of his sisters were killed by Nazis. Zionism is the national movement for the return of the Jewish people to their homeland and the resumption of Jewish sovereignty in the Land of Israel. Has come to include the development of the State of Israel and the protection of the Jewish nation in Israel. At this point in his life he became confused about his religion and what he believed in. He focused a lot more on Judaism and even considered moving to Israel. This struggle he had in defining what he believed in and who he was, led to many of the stories and the problems he faced. Common Theme The most common theme used in most of his work was Isolation. The factor of Isolation can be found in many of his short stories. Many of the main characters faced a deep depression of inner struggle with the concept of Isolationism. Examples found in texts:

The Metamorphosis- This piece is probably one of the most prime examples of Kafka using isolationism. Gregor was isolated from the outside world including his friends and family. As we found out, Gregor turned into a bug which caused him to lock himself in his room basically 24/7. Society including his family did not accept what Gregor had become.

The Hunger Artist- This text can also be linked to the factor of isolation. The main character in this text was basically starving himself to entertain people. People at first were fascinated with this but soon grew board of the act. Some people even accused the hunger artist of lying and sneaking food when there was no one around. With all this happening, the performer became isolated with the people. All the performer wanted to do was to be connected with the people or his so called fans. Once the public turned their backs on him he no longer had that connection. Another theme that can be seen with many pieces by Kafka is the conflict of death. Death was prominent in most of his short stories. The Judgment- In this short story written by Kafka, death was very evident and clear to see. George was writing a letter to his friend informing him on his newly engagement to his fiancé. Later in the novel Georg tells his father about what he is doing. The father ruins Georg’s character by saying basically how his friend does not care and how Georg is a horrible friend. Georg feeling guilty decided to commit suicide by jumping of a bridge. Although it is never confirmed that Georg actually died, it can be concluded that since the story ends with him jumping off the bridge, that he did indeed commit suicide. Isolation can also be seen with this text as well because Georg felt that he was alone after his father ridiculed him.

The Penal Colony- The Penal Colony is basically a short story about an explorer is comes face to with a new invention. This invention ends up being a machine is used to execute people. The pain in his throat was caused by tubercular lesions – his last months would pass in excruciating agony every time he swallowed. Kafka soon found himself parched and slowly wasting away of starvation. Communicating through the use of notes, he set about correcting the galleys of his next publication: A Hunger Artist. On noon, June 3, 1924, Franz Kafka died at the age of forty. At his funeral, Dora collapsed on the grave crying. Within ten years, both his father and mother would be buried in the same grave. Kafka.org
http://www.myjewishlearning.com/culture/2/Literature/Yiddish_and_Ladino/European_Writing/Franz_Kafka.shtml Sources
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