Re: [kafka-list] A Bug's Life?
Congratulations. This is possibly the first well-articulated cry for help
I've heard on this list in the past year. (Yes, I do mean to fling mud in
the faces of those kids trying to get us to throw 'em a term paper thesis.)
Dostoevsky and Kafka are often associated as fellow existentialists, as
artists struggling to with the horror they feel toward the nihilism fostered
by the Industrial Revolution. When the clockwork universe paradigm began to
run Western society, there was a terrible fallout that goes something like
this... Matter is all, and that is most valuable when reduced to scientific
formulae and numbers. Individuals are alone in the world with no higher
power, and therefore no real obligation to community. If the individual has
any value that is in its ability to help fill in the gaps of human
knowledge, because--after all--we will indeed eventually eradicate all
mysteries and solve all difficulties through science.
So the above is what Kafka is facing when he crawls inside a man-bug and
looks around at a world of empty demands and expectations, at family members
and an employer who hold demanding expectations but offer no reciprocal
feelings of common human empathy.
If you had trouble with "The Metamorphosis," I would recommend triangulating
Kafka. Try a couple of other shorter tales like "A Country Doctor" and "The
Judgement." This will likely put you onto the Kafka wavelength.
"And the eyes of them both were opened, and the knew that they were naked;
and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons." Gen. 3:7
----- Original Message -----
From: "markysp9" <marcusSP@...>
Sent: Monday, December 17, 2001 9:17 PM
Subject: [kafka-list] A Bug's Life?
> New to group and Kafka, here.
> Just read Metamorphosis.
> I kinda have that feeling you have when you go to an art gallery and
> see a "modern art" piece. I can appreciate the Mona Lisas and even
> the Dalis but the canvas on the wall in front of us looks like
> someone took buckets of paint and threw them on the canvas randomly.
> Everyone else is "ohhhing" and "ahhing", commenting on the depth and
> feeling of the painting and you just stand there scratching your head
> wondering why you don't "get it".
> Sometimes a person doesn't appreciate a good joke because they don't
> understand the premise to begin with. Perhaps that is the case here.
> any tips or insights on "how to get it"?
> PS. This is a request for help, not a put-down of Kafka. I have been
> going thru a Dostoevsky phase and have heard that these two are
> loosely categorized together. They seem as different as Bach and Limp
> Buscuit, to use a musical analogy. Thanks.