16.2.12

Gunter Ander on Franz Kafka

An extract from Ander's monograph on Kafka's work

An excerpt from Gunter Ander's Kafka (via Flowerville and Spurious): 'In Kafka's stories it is not so much the things and events in themselves which are disturbing as the fact that his characters react to them as they would to normal things and events, with little emotion. What makes the reading of his stories such a gruesome experience is his manner of treating the grotesque as everyday normality; not the fact that Gregor Samsa wakes up one morning transformed into a beetle, but that he sees nothing surprising in his fate. This principle, which might be termed the principle of 'soundless explosion', consists in withholding even a pianissimo where a fortissimo is expected; there is no change of volume at all -- the world simply goes on as before.' [Read More]

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