Read The Trial by Franz Kafka Edwin Muir Willa Muir Max Brod Online


Written in 1914 but not published until 1925, a year after Kafka’s death, The Trial is the terrifying tale of Josef K., a respectable bank officer who is suddenly and inexplicably arrested and must defend himself against a charge about which he can get no information. Whether read as an existential tale, a parable, or a prophecy of the excesses of modern bureaucracy weddedWritten in 1914 but not published until 1925, a year after Kafka’s death, The Trial is the terrifying tale of Josef K., a respectable bank officer who is suddenly and inexplicably arrested and must defend himself against a charge about which he can get no information. Whether read as an existential tale, a parable, or a prophecy of the excesses of modern bureaucracy wedded to the madness of totalitarianism, The Trial has resonated with chilling truth for generations of readers....

Title : The Trial
Author :
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ISBN : 9780099428640
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 255 Pages
Status : Available For Download
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The Trial Reviews

  • Stephen
    2019-05-19 15:11

    Kafka is tough. Kafka doesn’t play and he doesn’t take prisoners. His "in your grill" message of the cruel, incomprehensibility of life and the powerlessness of the individual is unequivocal, harsh and applied with the callous dispassion of a sadist. Life sucks and then you die, alone, confused and without ever having the slightest conception of the great big WHY. Fun huh?Finishing The Trial I was left bewildered and emotionally distant, like my feelings were stuck looking out into the middle distance not really able to focus or provide me with any input. I felt numb and a bit soul-weary and I can’t say I enjoyed the feeling. That said, should you read this? Absolutely and without question. Kafka’s insight and ability to plumb the depths of the mysteries of existence, dark and gloomy as his answers (or lack thereof) may be, is something to behold. His work…is…brilliant. Reading it made me feel at times awed and at other times incredibly stupid. Awed occurred when I would catch a glimpse of the deeper meaning that he was trying to convey through his prose. In those moments I would try desperately to create a sturdy mental foothold from which to explore Kafka’s next idea. Unfortunately…Stupid, which happened more often, would occur when that next Kafkaesque lesson would bounce off my thick head, making me lose my tenuous foothold and go sliding back down Mount Ignorance. It was a difficult summit to reach and I was I'll-equipped. Still, the moments of clarity and flashes of insight were more than enough to make this an experience I intend to repeat until I get it right…or at least die trying. THE STORY:“Someone must have traduced Joseph K., for without having done anything truly wrong, he was arrested one fine morning.” Like Gregor Samsa in The Metamorphosis, we are introduced to Kafka’s protagonist after the damage has been done. We are not observing a downfall, it has occurred. We are witnesses to the aftermath, the clean up. Joseph K, an officer of a prestigious bank discovers he has been accused of a crime the nature of which he is never told. We follow him from situation to situation as his desire to learn the nature of his offense leads only to more confusion and greater strife. He is meant to remain in ignorance. “I see, these books are probably law books, and it is an essential part of the justice dispensed here that you should be condemned not only in innocence but also in ignorance.” THOUGHTS: So many themes are present here that it is hard to keep it all straight in my head. On the surface, we have a skillful attack on totalitarianism and the evil of a mindless bureaucracy fueled by momentum and accountable to no one as it grinds up the individual as grease for its continued motion. This alone is frightening enough and Kafka’s images of oppressive inertia unquestioned routine are tiny snapshots or hell itself. However, there seemed to be so much more that Kafka was saying, so many more levels on which his dark secular benediction could be understood. The System as life itself and the bureaucracy as fate and man’s useless struggle against the forces arrayed against him by the universe. Kafka also delivers a blistering rebuke of religion in the form of a parable in the Cathedral. I’m still trying to get me tiny brain entirely wrapped around this one, but the sense of sadness and crushing hopelessness of the story was still a gut punch. ‘Everyone strives to attain the Law,' answers the man, 'how does it come about, then, that in all these years no one has come seeking admittance but me?' The doorkeeper perceives that the man is nearing his end and his hearing is failing, so he bellows in his ear: 'No one but you could gain admittance through this door, since this door was intended for you. I am now going to shut it.’ And later in this same conversation, “it is not necessary to accept everything as true, one must only accept it as necessary.”Still, as somber and dreary as the story is there are moments that are so brilliantly written that I actually found myself smiling despite the overall tone of the story. The Painter’s lecture to K about the difference strategies and processes involved in seeking among “actual acquittal,” “apparent acquittal” and “protraction” was nothing short of genius. In fact, given that the novel is only 200+ pages, I think those 15-20 pages are worth reading the entire novel. Overall, I am very satisfied to have finally read this as a personal exercise rather than a school-enforced trauma. I got a lot out of this. There were chunks of the book that I found slow and plodding, probably because I was stuck at the base of Mount Ignorance and didn’t absorb the ideas Kafka was dishing. Still, it did make for some dry reading time as Kafka’s writing is not ear-pleasing enough that you can simply enjoy the prose. His prose is good, but it is more a functional delivery system for his mind-rupturing ideas than for the beauty of the words themselves. Thus, for the moment, and given my imperfect understanding of all that Kafka had to say in this brilliant novel, I am going to say 4 stars. 4 stars full of staggering intellect and multi-layered, nuanced insight into “what it’s all about” delivered with the skill of a surgeon. I’ll be in the recovery room for a while. HIGHEST POSSIBLE RECOMMENDATION.

  • Aubrey
    2019-05-19 21:19

    Has this ever happened to you? You're chugging your way through a book at a decent pace, it's down to the last legs, you've decided on the good ol' four star rating, it's true that it had some really good parts but ultimately you can't say that it was particularly amazing. And all of the sudden the last part slams into your face, you're knocked sprawling on your ass by the weight of the words spiraling around your head in a merry go round of pure literary power, and you swear the book is whispering 'You know nothing, you snot nosed brat' through its pages of magnificence as the author leaves you far behind.If you haven't, read this book. If you have, and crave more of the same, see the previous.Now, what did the Goodreads summary call this book again? 'A terrifying, psychological trip'. Yes, I suppose you could say that. I mean, it is terrifying, it is psychological, and it makes for one hell of a ride. But, you see, those three words strung together convey the sense of otherworldliness, some diabolical satire that's made a nightmare of a reality that's usually pretty good about behaving itself. The problem with that is the fact that this story adheres more closely to reality than most books dare to dream of doing. There's no phantasmagorical twisting of the entire face of reality. This is reality. And it needs no aid in inspiring the most abject of terror.Arrests of innocents. Hazy procedures. Courts obscured by other courts. Files disappearing into the dark. "I see," said K., nodding, "these books are probably law books, and it is an essential part of the justice dispensed here that you should be condemned not only in innocence but also in ignorance." "That must be it," said the woman, who had not quite understood him.Judgment determined by accusation rather than by trial."We are only being punished because you accused us; if you hadn't, nothing would have happened, not even if they had discovered what we did. Do you call that justice?Guilty until proven less guilty. Less guilty via the right connections rather than the right evidence. Innocence with an expiration date. Complaints about any of the previous injustices accelerating the inevitable, and for what? The hope that the future might be better? What difference will that make to you, the individual life currently at stake? The invisible pendulum will still be suspended over the more invisible pit, and your every forthright movement will still be swallowed in the obscurity of the Law, and nothing will result but a building sense of anxiety and despair. Look at the Law of the past and more importantly the Law of the present, and tell me none of this applies, in the days where banks are 'too big' to be brought to justice and everything from the individual to the government is held hostage from a better tomorrow by the inane struggles of today."No," said the priest, "it is not necessary to accept everything as true, one must only accept it as necessary."History repeats itself.History repeats itself.History fucking repeats itself.Get it? Got it? Good.Doing something about it is another matter entirely.

  • s.p
    2019-04-26 14:01

    It is not necessary to accept everything as true, one must only accept it as necessaryNothing speaks a more profound truth than a pristine metaphor…Funny, us, worming through the world ascribing meaning, logic and order to the dumb, blind forces of void. It’s all one can do to maintain sanity in the absurd reality of existence, but what is it worth? Are we trees in gale force winds fighting back with fists we do not possess? Is life the love of a cold, cruel former lover bating us on while only concerned with themselves? What use is logic in an illogical prison where the opinion of the masses reigns supreme? Franz Kafka’s The Trial is the world we all live in, unlocked through layers of allegory to expose the beast hidden from plain sight. On the surface it is an exquisite examination of bureaucracy and bourgeoisie with a Law system so complex and far-reaching that even key members are unable to unravel it’s complicated clockwork. However, this story of a trial—one that never occurs other than an arrest and a solitary conference that goes nowhere—over an unmentioned crime serves as a brutal allegory for our existence within a judgemental societal paradigm under the watch of a God who dishes out hellfire to the guilty. This is a world where man’s noose is only a doorway. The Trial is not for the faint of heart or fragile psyche yet, while the bleakness is laid on thick, it is also permeated with a marvelous sense of humor and a fluid prose that keeps the pages flipping and the reading hours pushing forward towards dawn. This is a dark comedy of the human comedy, full of the freeing chortles of gallow humor. Kafka’s nightmarish vision is the heartbeat of our own existence, chronicling the frustrations of futility when applying logic to the reality of the absurd, yet factual, nature of life.Someone must have slandered Josef K., for one morning, without having done anything wrong, he was arrested.This memorable opening line is the perfect establishing shot for Kafka’s, and Joseph K.’s, world. One can be sure of their innocence, yet fall to the blade all the same. The most startling and accurate portrayal of mankind is found when K. goes to visit the painter in the slums and finds...a disgusting, steaming yellow fluid poured forth, before which a rat fled into the nearby sewer. At the bottom of the steps a small child was lying face down on the ground, crying, but it could hardly be heard above the noise coming from a sheet metal shop…We, humanity, are prostrate and bawling in a toxic wasteland, unloved and ignored by the absent parents. Not even passersby stop to help the child, or are even away, for the noise of industry drowns it out. This is a world where corporations are ‘people’ and actual lives are thrown to the gutter for ‘the good of the company’, where soulless abstract money-making concepts are given a higher priority than our own shared flesh-and-blood. The worst part is that we accept this. We tow the party line, we uphold something meaningless and only given power by our collective acceptance. ‘You may object that it is not a trial at all,’ says K. to the courtroom, ‘you are quite right, for it is only a trial if I recognize it as such.’ These are not political opinions I am presenting, just the fact that much of our society, economy and political structure exists only because we recognize it as so and prescribe meaning to something inherently meaningless. Children, such as the child crying in a pool of yellow filth, are a key motif in the novel. Their parents are never apparent and they run like wild animals. The gaggle of young girls outside the painters apartment perfectly reflect the wild masses of ignorance, defying respect for privacy and barging into places they aren’t wanted, needed or even should be simply because they can. One girl is described as hunchbacked and not yet an adult, yet full of sexuality which she asserts over K. ‘Neither her youth nor her deformity had prevented her early corruption.’ These girls, we are told, also belong to the court, another place where the persona is depicted more like beast than man, preying on those around them with their lusts. Take, for example, the student in the attic courtroom who asserts his dominance over the married women through his power. He, too, is slightly deformed with bow-legs that call to mind classic depictions of Satan with his animalistic torso and hoofed feet, and bushy red beard like something from nature and not urban society. He also snaps at K.’s hand with his teeth in defense, like a dog(Like a dog’ is the final line of dialogue in the novel, concerning a violent and abrupt execution. Seemingly we are nothing above the beasts of the world.), which isn’t how one would expect an educated man of the Law to respond. Even all the textbooks are actually just pornography, the court filled with carnal desires instead of logic and learned reasoning. This is the force of nature K, and all of us, fight against when attempting to address our condition with logic. We are nothing but dogs pit into a dogfight of which we had no free will in being placed. K. is a free-thinker drown by the obdurate glare of the masses, condemned for something unknown and never given an opportunity to prove innocence. They're talking about things of which they don't have the slightest understanding, anyway. It's only because of their stupidity that they're able to be so sure of themselves.How like our world today where we accept opinions without wondering the qualifications; internet slander or a simple viral meme can destroy a life or an idea simply because it is funny even if it isn’t rooted in reality. K. is all of us, K. is the everyman, K. is us faced with the world around us. A world where trying to go up against it will only lead to frustration and futility. Through all his proceedings, all his legal advice, nothing is learned. Lawyers and confidants only seem to discuss the workings of the trial and court system; the more we learn, the less we understand. The system is so complicated that it stalemates itself, and it seems almost pointless to investigate. Is there purpose in assessing our lives, our condition in the world? Not if we address it with logic. This is futility. But, perhaps, if we assess it on it’s own terms, then even if our fate is still sealed we can glean a bit of insight.That is why this story is presented as an allegory. The Trial is not a story about the Law or bureaucracy despite the outward appearance. This is society as a whole and pushes towards a religious allegory that is difficult to swallow. K. is told that even if he is acquitted, he may return home to be arrested again. Our reputation is unshakable and even when you prove your innocence over slander, people will still hold it against you. The word ‘allegedly’ is wonderfully damning in this way. K. hears that there is legend of lawyers getting clients fully acquitted, but no proof of this exists. Nobody even knows who these lawyers are. There is also higher courts, higher judges that nobody knows the name of that also seem to exist only in legend. These unseen, unknowable eyes of justice are like the eyes of God. One may be acquitted amongst their peers, but their soul goes to a higher court that will rule the final verdict. ‘Can’t you see two steps in front of you,’ the Priest shrieks at K., chastising him for his inability to look beyond his assumptions of the world and his logic. He proceeds with a parable that summarizes K.’s, and everyone’s, fate in the world in which a man is denied entrance into the halls of the Law. He waits his whole life, pestering the gatekeeper. Moments before his death of old age, the gatekeeper reveals that the entrance was meant solely for him, then closes the gates. The perfect expression of futility. K. protests that the man was deceived, yet the Priest argues that deception is not in the story. What we have is the absurd, K. wishing to assess his trial through due-process and logical reasoning, but failing to see that such verdicts are beyond that. I always snatched at the world with twenty hands, and not for a very laudable motive, either. That was wrong, and am I to show now that not even a year’s trial has taught me anything? His fate was already decided, and his efforts are in vain. It should come as no surprise, then, that K. is so suffocated in the stifling air of the court houses. Who wouldn’t feel faint and overcome with illness when beleaguered by the absurd where no assertion of innocence matters?The court wants nothing from you. It receives you when you came and it dismisses you when you go.The painter shows K. a portrait of a judge, depicted above his own post (the portrait a gift to a woman—yet another example of the abuse of power for carnal desire), but the most striking image is that of Justice. Justice is painted with winged feet, in motion at the request of the court, to also represent Victory. Yet the real horror is revealed when K. discovers the blending creates an image more akin to the God of The Hunt. We have a court system, a religious system, a moral system, that is more concerned with victory than actual justice, and seeks out prey for sport. We are all victims to this system, a system that is self-sustaining, ‘too big to fail’, and incorporates everyone. Nobody is safe from the system, and nobody is not a part of it. K. is the sacrificial victim of all of us, his death and futility a parable of our own endeavors in this, and the next, life. Kafka’s The Trial is just as important today as when it was written. It is a book that will leave you gasping for air, and thankful for it.5/5‘One must lie low, no matter how much it went against the grain, and try to understand that this great organization remained, so to speak, in a state of delicate balance, and that if someone took it upon himself to alter the dispositions of things around him, he ran the risk of losing his footing and falling to destruction, while the organization would simply right itself by some compensating reaction in another part of its machinery – since everything interlocked – and remain unchanged, unless, indeed, which was very probable, it became still more rigid, more vigilant, severer, and more ruthless.’

  • Helen Ροζουλί Εωσφόρος Vernus Portitor Arcanus Ταμετούρο Αμούν Arnum
    2019-05-07 15:14

    Οι εσωτερικοί δαίμονες και το ανελέητο χάος μιας αιώνιας δίκης-καταδίκης. Ο Γιόζεφ Κ. (Καημένος- Κατηγορούμενος-Κάφκα) είναι ένοχος. Αυτό αποτελεί αρχικά και τελειωτικά την ιδιότητα του. Δηλώνει αθώος,αλλά κατά την εξέλιξη της ιστορίας παρασύρεται μοιρολατρικά απο την συνείδηση του και τα διαφορά γεγονότα και τελικώς αποδέχεται την ενοχή του χωρίς -μεταφορικά- να γνωρίζει αυτό για το οποίο κατηγορείται. Ουσιαστικά το ξέρει πως είναι ένοχος,έτσι τον έπεισε η υποσυνείδητη διαταραχή του. Ο Γιόζεφ(Κ) είναι ένας μοναχικός άνθρωπος. Ελάχιστα και κατά ανάγκη,τηρουμένων των αναλογιών της διακριτής θέσης που κατέχει ως τμηματάρχης σε τράπεζα,διατηρεί κάποιες κοσμικές επαφές και δεν ζει στο περιθώριο της κοινωνίας. Όλο το βιβλίο της "δίκης" είναι μια υπαρξιακή αναζήτηση χωρίς ουσιαστικό αποτέλεσμα. Απο τη μια πλευρά το άτομο και απο την άλλη η κοινωνία. Με τις ευρύτερες έννοιες. Εργάζεται σε μια τράπεζα, ζει σε μια πανσιόν και η καθημερινότητα του είναι συγκεκριμένη,προβλέψιμη,βάρβαρη,απάνθρωπη, χαοτική. Όλοι γύρω απο τον Γιόζεφ είναι πάντα τυπικοί, ξένοι,επίφοβοι,άπονοι, μυστηριώδεις και κακόβουλοι. Δεν έχει φίλους. Δεν αισθάνεται την οικειότητα και τη θαλπωρή των συγγενών. Όλοι,πέρα απο τον ίδιο,ανήκουν σε έναν μικρόκοσμο που οδηγεί στην άβυσσο. Είναι ένας εφιάλτης που τον βιώνει καθημερινά. Ένας μη πραγματικός κόσμος. Ένας σκουπιδότοπος υπάρξεων που δεν θα μπορέσουν ποτέ να συναισθανθούν,να συμπονέσουν, να νιώσουν, να αγαπήσουν με την ψυχή τους. Σε αυτόν τον παράδοξα χαοτικό κόσμο του απαγγέλλεται η κατηγορία της ενοχής του. Παραπέμπεται σε δίκη. Η ενοχή του δεν χρειάζεται αποδείξεις. Απλώς υπάρχει. Ζούμε μαζί του απο την πρώτη στιγμή αυτό το ανεξήγητο συνονθυλεύμα ασάφειας,αδικίας,ρευστότητας,επικινδυνότητας. Οι δικαστές άφαντοι. Κλητήρες, συνήγοροι,εισαγγελείς,μυστήρια πρόσωπα, ύπουλες διαβουλεύσεις,ακαθόριστα κτιριακά συγκροτήματα δικαστικών αιθουσών, όλα μια άβυσσος, μια απειλή, μια μόνιμη τρομακτική ανασφάλεια. Νιώθουμε μαζί του ανίκανοι να τα αντιμετωπίσουμε. Νιώθουμε κίνδυνο. Ενοχή... Ο νόμος είναι ο θεός. Όμως εδώ λειτουργεί μια παράπλευρη δικαιοσύνη. Μια συνομωσία. Με σκοτεινούς και ασαφείς όρους. Σε αυτήν μπλέκεται ο Γιόζεφ. Κατηγορούμενος χωρίς δικαίωμα υπεράσπισης. Είσαι εξ αρχής ένοχος,δεν υπάρχει τίποτα υπέρ σου. Στέκεσαι απέναντι στους Δικαστές ταπεινωμένος. Καταδικασμένος. Εξευτελισμένος. «δεν αναζητά με δική της πρωτοβουλία τους πολίτες με ένοχη συνείδηση, αλλά, όπως ορίζει ο νόμος, έλκεται από την ενοχή. Αυτός είναι νόμος απαράβατος».Προχωρώντας η ιστορία όλοι πια γνωρίζουν πως ο Γιόζεφ είναι ένοχος.Οι ανώτεροι κοινωνικά είναι ανάλγητοι,απαθείς,αυταρχικοί,αμείλικτοι,ανεξέλεγκτοι,παντοδύναμοι. Οι κατώτεροι τους είναι υποταγμένοι,αναξιοπρεπείς,χωρίς υπερηφάνεια και με πολλή δουλοπρέπεια. Ο Γιόζεφ κυκλοφορεί ελεύθερος περιμένοντας τη "δίκη" με το στίγμα του ένοχου. Έχουν οριστεί τακτικές ανακρίσεις παρωδίας και διαπόμπευσης. Πρόκειται βεβαίως για δικαστήριο συνείδησης. Δεν σε φυλακίζει ποτέ, μα πάντα σε παρακολουθεί. Σε στοιχειώνει,σε τρελαίνει. "Το δικαστήριο δεν ξεχνά ποτέ". Κατηγορείσαι. Δεν ξέρεις γιατί. Δεν έχεις υπεράσπιση. Ξέρεις ότι αυτό δεν τελειώνει. Ξεπερνάμε τα όρια της διαταραχής. Συμπέρασμα ανεξιχνίαστο. Δέος και εκμηδενισμός μπροστά στο παντοδύναμο και το απροσδιόριστο που ο υγιής ανθρώπινος νους διαισθάνεται με ανατριχίλα. Αιώνια κόλαση και τιμωρία. Η "Δίκη" υπάρχει. Μπορεί να είναι ο θεός, μπορεί να ειναι οτιδήποτε πανίσχυρο,σκοτεινό και απρόσιτο. ΕΤΥΜΗΓΟΡΙΑ: Ψυχολογική διαταραχή-Ανθρώπινος αφανισμός- Αυτοεξάλειψη-Αιώνια τιμωρία. ⚖️⌛️💡⚖️⛓⚙️⚖️⌛️Καλή ανάγνωση!Ορίστε ημερομηνία για Δικάσιμο.

  • Bookdragon Sean
    2019-04-28 20:03

    This book haunts me. I can’t stop thinking about it because I have questions, questions and more questions; I have so many unanswered questions that I will never know the answer to, and it’s slowly killing me!What is the trial? Is K actually guilty or is he innocent? Is this novel a nightmare sequence or a paranormal encountering? Why are so many characters never heard from again? And who is that mysterious figure at the end of the novel that witnesses K's fate? There are just so many questions, but no damned answers!This is frustrating, so frustrating. The novel leaves the reader with an overwhelming sense of perplexity. There is no definitive explanation as to what has actually happened; there is no logical sense of the events. But, then K doesn’t know either; he is just as confused by the strange happenings as the reader. The events are completely unexplainable and unfathomable; thus, Kafka’s trial will stay with the me for the rest of my life, as I ponder this bizarre novel again, and again.There are no answers!K wakes up on the morning of his thirtieth birthday; he goes outside his room and finds several men eating his breakfast. He is informed he is under arrest; the men don’t tell him why; they leave and he is able to go about his daily life although he must attend court next week. They give him a location, but no time. He arrives; he is accused for something they don’t inform him of. He storms out of the room and is hounded by the situation ever since. He attempts to prove his innocence, but what he is innocent of he doesn’t know. A year later, on his thirtieth birthday,(view spoiler)[ two men arrive and sentence him; he is taken to a quarry and murdered. (hide spoiler)] The reader has very little idea why it has happened. "Someone must have been spreading slander about K., for one morning he was arrested, though he had done nothing wrong."Indeed, the Trial uses fragmentation in its plot to further establish the ungraspable nature of K’s encounters, such as in chapter three when he attempts to save a washerwoman from an evil and lustful student. He chases the couple at the stair is where he encounters a fog and is forced to retreat. The event is never mentioned again. The situation is nightmarish, and like a dream, is forgotten about quickly. This tells us that no meaning will be had from the Trial; it tells us that there will never be any answers.What exactly is this wierd court?The court that conducts the trial is shrouded in even more mystery. Just who are these people that can psychologically manipulate with so little effort? They are a powerful order, which is indicated by their sessions always accruing on the highest floor of the building; this evokes their, strange, authoritative presence. There are even suggestions that this court hold sessions in each, and every, building in the city, which again creates more weirdness. "The faces that surrounded him! Tiny black eyes darted about, cheeks dropped like those of drunken men, the long beards were stiff and scraggly, and when they pulled on them, it seemed as if they were merely forming claws, not pulling beards. Beneath the beards, however – and this was the true discovery K. made – badges of various sizes and colors shimmered on the collars of their jacketsIs this a dream?However, one thing that remains clear through the novel is the characterisation of K. He is completely bland; he has no endearing qualities whatsoever, yet the women seem to throw themselves at him on multiple occasions. This resonates in the dream world, because only in a dream world could a man like K be such a womaniser. He is meek, powerless and accepting of his unjust fate, so only a dream could a shadow of a man like K be so attractive an irresistible. "I recruit women helpers, he thought, almost amazed: first Fraülein Bürstner, then the court usher's wife, and now this little nurse, who seems to have an inexplicable desire for me."In spite of his blandness and alienation, he is the only rational character within the novel. I like to think a little bit of Kafka comes through here. I’ve been reading up on his personal history, and he was a very segregated man; he was disbeliever amongst the Jewish religion; he was distant to his overbearing farther and the opposite sex. He didn’t seem to fit in, perhaps a little bit of Kafka comes through in K. Perhaps he wanted to show what it would be like cut off from the rest of civilization. Overall, this is an iconic piece of literature; it is one that every serious reader should read before they die because it is completely unique. Its strange narrative resembles a dream; its events are pointless and impenetrable like a nightmare that stays with you forever. Indeed, this book will never be forgotten by those that have read it, as the unanswered questions will haunt for the rest of their days. I’ve quite literally been unable to sleep when thinking about this book, as the question “what exactly does it mean?” lingers in my mind. Review Update: I bought a Folio Society edition of this and just has to show it off.....Doesn't it just look great? ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>

  • Huda Yahya
    2019-05-03 17:16

    تخيل معي للحظة أن ماكس برود -ناشر كتب كافكا ‏قد قام بحرق جميع كتبه بناءً على وصيته‏هل كان ممكنًا لعالم القراء تخيل مكتبة كونية‏ لا تحوي خلاصة الكافاكاوية بها ؟إن طلب كافكا المجنون ببساطة يستكمل رحلته الحياتية ‏وفلسفته الخاصة كما يليق بها كروح عدمية ‏وما فعله ماكس برود – ليرقد في سلام أينما كان ‏هو ما يليق بكاتب عظيم وروح شفافة‏‏ كان ليخلو عالم الأدب منها إن نفذ تلك الوصية ;;;;;;;;ذهب القفص يبحث عن عصفور!ـــــــــــــــتتناول الرواية الشهيرة مشكلة السلطة العلياوقد أولها الكثيرون إلى الأب الذي عانى منه ومعه البائس فرانز لآخر نفسكان كافكا ينظر إلى نفسه من خلال عيني أبيه كما في العلاقة التي بين السيد والعبدكافكا لا يتمرد في الحقيقة ‏إنه يختبئ ويخاف ويكره ويفرز أوجاعه أدبًا عجيب التكوين‏لقد أوصله هذا الخوف –بجانب أسباب أخرى إلى تحقير للذات مستمر ومتناميوكل مرة كانت هناك حادثة مع السلطة يجعل كافكا من نفسه المخطئ لا غيره‏‏-يظهر ذلك بوضوح في المسخ;;;;;;;;تبدو المدينة غائمة ،،باردةغارقة في الضباب والكآبةيستيقظ (ك) ليجد رجالًا غرباء يدورون حولهلقد قبض عليكلماذا؟لا أحد يجيبوبرغم أن ك يعترض إلا أنه يسايرهمبلا قاضي ولا تهمة تستمر أحداث الروايةو ك مع الوقت يتحولإنه يبدو في البداية مثابرًا على المحاولة‏أن يعرف لما يدانلما يحال إلى هذه المحاكمة العبثيةومع اقتراب النهاية يتحول ك إلى الاستسلاملم يعد يبالي بشيءمشى بصرامة بينهما(جلاديه)‏وشكل ثلاثتهم كيانًا واحداوكان كيانا يمكن له أن يتشكل فقط من انعدام الحياةـــــــــــــــ;;;;;;;;عند غرس المدية في رقبته بدا الأمر وكأن خزيه سيستمر بعد موته ‏ـــــــــــــــ" هذا السطر الأخير يصيبني بالقشعريرة"المحاكمة إن لم تكن رواية نفسية ،،فكيف يمكن للرواية النفسية أن تكون؟؟استدعى كافكا الرعب الداخلي إلى الخارج مجسمًا وحيَّا ‏يظهر الاغتراب في أدبه جليًاتخرج حكاياته المبهرة من لاشعوره مكتنفة بالغموض‏لقد برع كافكا دومًا في تصوير الانفعالات البشرية الأكثر سوداوية ،،وعمقًا ،،وحيوانية‏القلق ،،الرعب،،الشعور المتأصل بالدونية،،العزلةاحتقار الذات،،احتقار السلطة والخوف منها في الوقت ذاته‏تمت ترجمة المحاكمة إلى تأويلات لا حصر لها ‏منها هذا التأويل العجيب الذي رأى الرواية يكمن فيها ‏شذوذ جنسي يتوق الكاتب فيه لممارسته مع أمه!!‏ربما أفضل تفسير للرواية يرتبط بتحليل‏‏ شخصية كافكا نفسها- أو ما نستطيع الامساك به لتحليله منها ‏نظرة كافكا إلى العالم تنبع من نظرته إلى نفسهوالمشكلة الكبرى هي :‏كافكا لا يجد في نفسه ما يجعله يقتنع بأنه أهلًا للحياة ‏;;;;;;;;لقد عبر كافكا عن العبثية في الرواية كما لم يفعل قبلًأويقال أنه ضحك بهستيريا حينما كان يقرأ صفحات المحاكمة على بعض من أصدقائهغرز الرجل الساطور عميقًا في قلبه ولفه مرتينكما يموت الكلب-قال كـــــــــــــــكتب كافكا في يومياته أنه يعتبر الحرفK‏ مقززا مثيرا للاشمئزاز‏ ومع ذلك أصر على استخدامه في الرواية نعتا واسما لبطله المعذب‏هذا بالضبط ما أحاول قولههذا هو كافكا

  • Manny
    2019-05-10 16:03

    The tortured bureaucratic world described in The Trial always strikes me as startlingly modern. I wonderedHow The Trial might have started if Kafka had been an academic writing in 2010K's latest conference paper had been rejected, and now he sat in front of his laptop and read through the referees' comments. One of them, evidently not a native speaker of English, had sent a page of well-meaning advice, though K was unsure whether he understood his recommendations. The second referee had only written three lines, in a dismissive tone that hurt K's feelings. K had an appointment with his thesis advisor later that day, and wondered whether it would appear more constructive to rewrite the paper for submission to another conference, or to say that he was drawing a line so that he could concentrate on his dissertation. He was trying to decide between these two courses of action, neither of which greatly appealed to him, when his officemate arrived. Fräulein Müller, a pale, slightly-built, earnest girl with wispy brown hair, was writing an extremely dull dissertation on the discourse semantics of phone sex; K had never dared ask her why she had chosen this topic, which seemed singularly ill-adapted to her general demeanour. Today, she was also in a bad mood. She sat down and opened her own laptop without saying a word, and typed industriously. After about twenty minutes, she looked up and sighed. "Problems?" asked K.Fräulein Müller sighed again. Then, in an uninflected monotone, she read a crude and unimaginatively pornographic passage, to which K listened attentively. He was, as usual, embarrassed to discover that he had become sexually aroused; but Fräulein Müller never once allowed her eyes to stray from her screen, and K was fairly sure that his momentary excitement had passed unnoticed. She concluded, and opened a spreadsheet."Do you believe that she is actually touching herself here, or that she is merely saying that she would do so in her fantasy?" she asked tiredly.K considered the matter. "I think it's only in the fantasy," he said after a while. "But I'm not sure. Maybe 60%."Fräulein Müller filled in two boxes in her spreadsheet."Now, suppose that she had said `will' instead of `must' in the last sentence. Would your judgement still be the same?"K asked her to read the sentence again. "I would say that made it more likely," he said, after further careful thought. "80%. I'm definitely not certain."Fräulein Müller filled in two more boxes, and examined the new figures that appeared at the bottom of the sheet. "Not statistically significant," she said in a dejected tone. "I know I shouldn't keep checking all the time, but I can't help it. I need more data."K had several times been on the point of asking Fräulein Müller where her examples came from, but was afraid that this might appear intrusive; he knew almost nothing about her private life. He suddenly realised that he was meant to be seeing his advisor in a quarter of an hour. Apologising awkwardly, he put on his coat and left. The walk across the campus was, however, shorter than he had remembered, and he arrived in good time. Professor Holz appeared surprised to see him, and K reminded him that they had agreed to meet.K's advisor was thickset and completely bald, despite only being in his mid-forties. He had a second position at another university, and was rarely to be found in his office; normally K would have been glad to have cornered him and be able to ask for advice, but today he could not think of anything to say. He waited for Professor Holz to take the initiative. K's advisor seemed equally at a loss. He took off his rimless glasses, and polished them carefully before speaking."So, K," he began, typing as he did so. "I understand your paper was rejected."K confirmed that this was indeed true."Well," continued Professor Holz, "I think we both agree about the nature of the problem."K was in fact unsure what the professor was referring to; he knew though that he had reservations about the research direction K had chosen, and assumed that this was a veiled allusion to the objections he had raised at their last meeting. He cleared his throat in a way that could be interpreted as assent."I understand, however," said Holz, "that your collaboration with Fräulein Müller has been more successful."K looked at his advisor carefully, trying to guess whether he was being ironic, but was unable to tell. He agreed hesitantly, trying to sound as noncommital as he could in case it was a trap. But the professor suddenly looked at his watch and rose, exclaiming that he had forgotten another meeting. He smiled apologetically to K as he escorted him from the room, and locked the door."I would appreciate a progress report before the end of the week," he said, as they stood in front of the elevator. "You have heard, of course, that the new funding cuts oblige us to reexamine our priorities."This sounded vaguely familiar to K, who had however assumed that he was not one of the people affected."It's mainly a formality," said the professor. "None the less, I would like you to take it seriously and do a thorough job. It is particularly important that you describe your short-term objectives."There were several questions that K urgently wished to ask, but at that moment the elevator arrived. The professor disappeared into it, saying something that K was unable to catch. He took the stairs down to street level, and walked slowly back to his office. Fräulein Müller now seemed much more animated, and suggested to K that they eat lunch together at the Italian restaurant they both liked."I'm sorry I was like that earlier," she said as they finished their spaghetti. "It's this horrible report. I'm so glad I've finally turned it in. I suppose you did yours days ago."K waved his hand in a gesture of vague assent, though he was now starting to feel rather concerned."Oh good!" said Fräulein Müller, and smiled at him in a way that, for a moment, almost made her look attractive. "Then maybe I can ask you to give me some more linguistic judgements? I think the new batch of stories is better than usual."K could think of no way to decline this offer; so, for the rest of the afternoon, he listened to Fräulein Müller and patiently answered her questions. Around 4 pm, he received an email reminding him that the progress report was due by the end of the following day. He attempted to think about it while simultaneously listening to Fräulein Müller, but this proved to be impossible. Twice, she interrupted him with a puzzled air, and pointed out inconsistencies in his answers. K was forced to give her his full attention. When it was time to leave, he had still not begun the report. He tried to muster his ideas as he walked home, and had almost reached his apartment when he realised that he had forgotten his laptop at the office.

  • Fernando
    2019-05-18 12:57

    "Tener un proceso significa haberlo perdido ya."La obra de Kafka es compleja, inquietante y genera usualmente en el lector el mismo desconcierto que en sus personajes, quienes terminan enredados en infinitas encrucijadas y laberintos que nunca logran desvelar. Durante la primer lectura de este libro, hace muchos años, yo no había leído tanto a Kafka y tampoco había aprendido sobre los detalles sobre su vida.De ahí el hecho de que yo escribiera en la reseña original, de pocas líneas: “El Proceso me ha desorientado justo al final. Un final que no esperaba, pero que a la vez demuestra la maestría narrativa de Kafka”.Luego de haber completado la lectura de toda su obra y haber leído sus “Diarios”, su “Carta al Padre” y las “Cartas a Milena” (solo me resta leerlas “Cartas a Felice”) tengo mucho más en claro de que se trata lo “kafkiano” y de por qué se manifiesta de forma sucesiva tanto en sus relatos, parábolas y aforismos como en sus novelas: esto se manifiesta por la directa conexión de lo ficcional con Kafka empírico.La gran analogía se produce, precisamente entre los vaivenes emocionales entre los que se movió a lo largo de su vida y la orientación de muchas de sus experiencias hacia su literatura. Es como que un mundo no puede funcionar sin el otro. Gran parte de lo que uno lee en sus novelas, probablemente tenga una réplica, frase, conexión y origen en las entradas de sus Diarios.Para ello, con sólo leer ciertos párrafos de este u otro libro, seguramente encontraremos algo relacionado a su vida personal, sus experiencias, anhelos y miedos.Ahora bien, “El Proceso” es para mí el libro que más fielmente recrea la escena y proceder kafkianos. De hecho aún más que en “El Castillo”, aunque los intentos del agrimensor K. en esa otra novela se rodean de cierta persistencia y porfía que en Josef K. no percibimos. K. se encuentra en un estado que es para mí el mismo que el del lector: el de una constante desorientación.A medida que nos vamos adentrando en las circunstancias que rodean la situación procesal de K., nos damos cuenta de que nos vemos imposibilitados de avanzar en algún sentido. Nosotros mismos como lectores carecemos al igual que K. de esa información necesaria para aventurar qué puede llegar a suceder más adelante.Para complicar las cosas, Josef K. está acusado, le dicen que está detenido, pero no le clarifican por qué con lo cual se acrecienta su incertidumbre. Sucede esta conversación: "Usted está detenido, desde luego, pero eso no debe impedir ejercer su profesión. Tampoco debe ser un estorbo para su vida habitual." "Entonces estar detenido no es muy grave", dijo K., acercándose al inspector. "Nunca dije otra cosa", respondió él.Lentamente ingresa K., a una serie de situaciones realmente absurdas -otro de los elementos claves de las novelas de Kafka- para tratar de acceder a un tribunal inalcanzable e invisible sin dejar de enredarse en una burocracia paralizante de abogados, jueces de instrucción, fiscales, ujieres y todo tipo de oscuros personajes del ámbito judicial (Kafka era abogado y entendía a la perfección dicho sistema) sin ningún tipo de avance positivo en su situación.Realmente, algunas escenas parecen escritas más para una pieza teatral que para una novela. Incluso, diría yo que es una novela mucho más teatral que "La metamorfosis". Hay momentos en los diálogos durante capítulos como "Primera investigación", "Las Oficinas". "Despido del Abogado" y "El comerciante Block" que son excesivamente exagerados, puntualmente en las reacciones y actitudes de algunos personajes. Cuando se presenta ante el tribunal para su primera declaración, esto sucede en un edificio atestado de la gente más rara y extraña posible, con un techo tan bajo que tienen que encorvar la cabeza y en un ambiente opresivo y de constante ahogo. Cuando uno imagina esa situación como lector, se extraña y se sorprende. Uno piensa: "bueno, esto no puede ser real, o está exagerado al límite de lo insospechado, o puede ser una alucinación de K. o decididamente un sueño" -como lo que sucede en el capítulo "El flagelador", al que considero el más desconcertante y hasta ridículo del libro.Otro aspecto muy desarrollado por Kafka a lo largo de la novela es el tema de la atmósfera oscura, asfixiante y claustrofóbica a la que está constantemente sometido K.Eso sucede en varias partes, como por ejemplo en "Primera Investigación": "El vaho neblinoso de la habitación era sumamente denso: impedía incluso observar a los que estaban lejos", o como en el capítulo donde visita el estudio de Titorelli, el pintor: "El aire del cuarto le había ido resultando poco a poco sofocante y ya varias veces había mirado una estufa de hierro... el calor del cuarto era inexplicable."; y en el capítulo final: "Debajo de los faroles, K., intentó varias veces, por difícil que le resultara el ser llevado tan apretadamente, ver a sus acompañantes con más claridad de lo que le había sido posible en la penumbra del cuarto."Todos estos detalles, creo yo, no fueron escogidos al azar por Kafka. Él quiso imponerle a la novela una asfixiante atmósfera interrumpida y lo logra a la perfección. Prácticamente, no hay pasaje que no esté rodeado de oscuridad, penumbra y encierro. Ni siquiera en su visita a la Catedral, durante su conversación con el sacerdote que para variar es el capellán de la prisión y además forma parte del tribunal.Ahora, luego de comentar este detalle remarco también que prácticamente todos los personajes con los que se cruza K. (la lavandera, el abogado Huld, algunos empleados del banco en que trabaja, su tío, la Leni, que es la empleada de Huld, el comerciante Block, cualquier personaje del ambiente judicial), todos, casi todos saben que tiene un proceso en curso y algunos hasta aventuran que es culpable y que no tiene buen fin su proceso. Algo me dice que lo irreal debe inferir en la realidad de K., dado que es sorprendentemente llamativo y hasta incluso él lo reconoce. Parece que todos saben, se lo dicen y él luego no necesita presentarse, ya es una obviedad.El ante último capítulo del libro, "En la Catedral" es, como indico en la primera reseña el más elevado del libro para mí, puesto que en él expone su famosa parábola "Ante la Ley", que a la vez dispara múltiples interpretaciones en los lectores. El tema de la Ley es para Kafka supremo, inalcanzable, inaccesible, poderoso. Siempre ha sido así para él y de esta forma lo volcó en sus novelas, tanto en esta como en "El castillo", personificada por los señores propietarios del Castillo, a los que K. no llega, producto de su propia futilidad, sucede en la Ley impuesta por el padre de Gregor Samsa (en Samsa cambia las letras de Kafka, su propio apellido) confinándolo a ser recluido como una bestia dentro de su propio cuarto y que tiene conexión con la relación que Kafka tuvo con su padre, en el cuento "La condena", en un caso similar al de este libro Georg Bendemann (Bende sin -mann, concuerda con Kafka) cuyo padre lo condena a morir ahogado y en muchos más que podríamos seguir citando más ejemplos, pero volviendo al pasaje "Ante la Ley", yo sostengo que no es necesario más que leer la conversación de K., con el sacerdote para entender de que se trata esa parábola maravillosa, producto de la mente de este genio único que se llamó Franz Kafka.Sigo sosteniendo que todo aquel que admire los grandes libros de la literatura mundial, debería detenerse al menos una vez ante un clásico inoxidable como éste.

  • Kevin Ansbro
    2019-05-16 19:09

    "A mind is like a parachute. It doesn’t work if it isn’t open."—Franz KafkaSomeone must have been telling lies about Josef K., he knew he had done nothing wrong but, one morning, he was arrested.This famous opening line becomes yet more intriguing as it pitches us directly into a scene whereby the first two protagonists are granted a degree of anonymity by the author, as he seeks to lure us into his philosophical daydream.K is clearly under house arrest, but his perplexing captors aren’t at liberty to tell him if he has been arrested. Who are they? K wonders. They look as if they might be policemen, but neither he, nor the reader, can be certain. They could be pranksters for all he knows. Even the country he lives in isn’t name-checked.So many unanswered questions:Who is he?Who are they?Why has he been arrested?Where are we?Does time have a beginning or an end?Why did the chicken cross the road?This, my fine bibliophilic friends, is an enigma burritoed in a paradox. There is something farcical about the situation he finds himself in; the ensuing cockeyed exchange of dialogue was almost Monty Pythonesque.I shall paraphrase (apologies to Mr Kafka)..."Take me to your superior!""He will see you as soon as he wants to see you.""Who are you?""We’re free, you’re not, and you’re going to be put on trial.""On trial, for what?""Remarkable bird, the Norwegian Blue, isn’t it, eh? Beautiful plumage."The absurdity continues.There follows a kangaroo court and the comically surreal appearance of a whip-man, whose job it is to give people a damn good flogging. I don’t know if I was meant to be outraged, but I found it really funny (there’s something wrong with me, I’m sure of it).Kafka uses existentialism like Banksy uses a spray can. K is trying to remain rational while the world around him has become irrational - something most of us have experienced at some stage in our lives.As is also the case with Orwell’s 1984, this book hints at the totalitarian regimes that were likely to follow.I don’t profess to understand much of what Kafka hoped to symbolise in this allegorical mystery (I suspect he didn’t want anyone to unlock all of its secrets anyway), and one gets the feeling that he deliberately leads us into a literary cul-de-sac of his own choosing.The blurb describes the book as being ‘terrifying’ and ‘chilling’. I found it to be neither.If anything, I found it rather droll.Let me explain myself thus…I have a lugubrious friend. His name is Mark. Mark is so overly pessimistic and melancholic, that he creases me up with laughter. Then, when he asks me what it is that’s so funny (with that glum look on his face), I crack up even more! He’s a hoot, and so is this book!I thoroughly enjoyed being trapped in Franz Kafka’s web and I must revisit Metamorphosis, his crowning achievement.I read it years ago, when I was too young to properly ‘get’ it. Not that I’m likely to totally understand it even now! : )

  • Foad
    2019-04-24 18:04

    چند شب پیش فیلم «بزرگراه گمشده» از دیوید لینچ را دیدم. بعد از فیلم، به عادت همیشگی، فوری مرورگر اینترنت را باز کردم و سرچ کردم:Lost highway WTF?!قبل تر که فیلم «کله پاک کنی» را دیده بودم هم مشابه همین را سرچ کردم و همین طور قبل ترش که «مالهالند درایو» را دیده بودم. هر بار هم کلی نتایج خنده آوری پیدا کردم! بیننده هایی که از روند آشفته و هذیان گونۀ فیلم به سر درد افتاده بودند و با عصبانیت می خواستند بدانند این دیگر چی بود که دیدند؟ و دیگرانی که جواب داده بودند و سعی کرده بودند برای اتفاقات نامربوط فیلم به هر زور و زحمتی که شده توجیهی عقلانی پیدا کنند، حتی توجیهاتی خنده دار و آبکی. تماشای این تلاش های مذبوحانه برای جا دادن یک تجربۀ آزاردهندۀ غیرعقلانی در قالبی که نظم و معنایی عقلانی پیدا کند، همیشه برایم خنده دار بوده و هست. نه فقط راجع به فیلم های دیوید لینچ. راجع به تمام به اصطلاح تفسیرها و تحلیل هایی که سعی می کنند وقایع یک داستان را به شکلی نمادین یا به هر ترتیب دیگر، به گونه ای بازسازی کنند که آن آزاردهندگی ناشی از توجیه ناپذیری را از دست بدهند، و با فهم هر روزه سازگار شوند.داستان های کافکا از همین دستند. داستان هایی که وقتی در آن ها غرق می شوی دنیایی غریب و وهم انگیز را تجربه می کنی. دنیایی کاملاً شبیه به همین دنیای خودمان، ولی غیرقابل توضیح با قواعدی که به آن خو کرده ایم. به همین دلیل وحشتی بیان نشدنی در طول داستان جریان دارد. در مقابل، تفسیرها و تحلیل هایی که از داستان های کافکا شده، به طور کامل از دنیایی که کافکا می خواسته خلق کند بیرون است، و حتی تلاش می کند آن را تخریب کند. تلاش می کند همۀ آن احساس های بیان نشدنی را با تفسیرهایی پیش پا افتاده، در قالب های عقلانی جا بدهد: سوسک مسخ؟انسان ازخودبیگانه، دستمالی شده ترین و در نتیجه پیش پا افتاده ترین مفهوم قرن نوزدهم و بیستم.دادگاه محاکمه؟بوروکراسی فاسد. یا حتی فاجعه تر: دادگاه الهی روز قیامت!وقتی در صفحات اینترنت می چرخم و توجیه های خنده دار آدم ها راجع به فیلم های لینچ را می خوانم، همیشه یک فکر در ذهنم چرخ می خورد: این هایی که فیلم را این طور تفسیر و فهم کرده اند، پس از چه چیز فیلم لذت برده اند؟پ ن:این ریویوی قدیم من از محاکمه است، آیا من هم به دنبال تفسیر عقلانی این رمان بودم؟معروفه که میگن اسم «ک» برای شخصیت اول، نشون دهنده ی اینه که کافکا نمیخاد شخصیت پردازی بکنه. نمیخاد شخصیتش حتا اسم داشته باشه. این، شاید مهم ترين خصوصيت «ک» باشه. بی هویت و بی شخصیت بودنش. شخصيت انفعالى داشتنش. او همواره محكوم بوده، همچنان كه در دادگاه بى نام و نشان محكوم میشه. محكوم بوده كه جهان و ديگران هويتش رو تعيين كنن. همیشه همراه با جهت جهان اطرافش حرکت میکنه. عموش به جاش تصميم میگیره. دخترك ناقص الخلقه به جاش تصميم میگیره. وكيلش به جاش تصميم میگیره. رييسش به جاش تصميم میگیره و نهايتاً، دادگاه به جاش تصميم میگیره. سعی میکنه كه مبارزه كنه و عليه همه ى اين ها بشوره، ولى شكست میخوره. (view spoiler)[و در انتها، در برابر اين تقدير گريزناپذير تسليم میشه و خودشو به دست جلادها میسپره. (hide spoiler)]

  • Ahmad Sharabiani
    2019-04-23 15:20

    701. Der Prozess = The Trial, Franz Kafkaمحاکمه - فرانتس کافکا (نیلوفر، فرخی، نگارستان، ماهی، نیلا، کوله پشتی، ...) تاریخ نخستین خوانش: سال 1975 میلادی عنوان: محاکمه؛ نویسنده: فرانتس کافکا؛ مترجم: حسینقلی جواهرچی؛ تهران، فرخی، 1353؛ در 216 ص؛ عنوان: محاکمه؛ نویسنده: فرانتس کافکا؛ مترجم: امیرجلال الدین اعلم؛ تهران، کتابسرا، 1370، در 342 ص؛ تهران، نیلوفر، 1370؛ در 342 ص؛ چاپ هفتم 1387؛ چاپ یازدهم 1395؛عنوان: محاکمه؛ نویسنده: فرانتس کافکا؛ مترجم: منوچهر بیگدلی خمسه؛ تهران، نگارستان کتاب، چاپ دوم 1395؛ در 314 ص؛ عنوان: محاکمه؛ نویسنده: فرانتس کافکا؛ مترجم: علی اصغر حداد؛ تهران، ماهی، 1388؛ در 271 ص؛ چاپ ششم 1393؛ شابک: 9789649971544؛مترجمهای دیگری که محاکمه را ترجمه کرده اند: حمید احیاء تهران، نیلا، 1392، در 100 ص؛ شابک: 9786001221026؛ سارا رحیمی، تهران، قاصدک صبا، 1389، در 283 ص؛ شابک: 9786005675016؛ محمد رمضانی؛ تهران، کوله پشتی، 1391، در 310 ص؛ شابک: 9786006687087؛ کامل روزدار، تهران، اشاره، 1395؛ در 504 ص؛ شابک: 9789648936902؛ رمانی ناتمام از فرانتس کافکا ست که نخستین بار در سال 1925 میلادی چاپ شد. از مشهورترین آثار ایشان ست. داستان مردی که به دست حاکمی خارج از صحنه و دور از دسترس، به جرمی که ماهیت جرم در طی داستان نیز برای خوانشگر مشخص نمی‌شود، دستگیر و مجازات می‌شود. همانند سایر آثار کافکا محاکمه هم کامل نشد، اگرچه فصلی دارد که در آن، داستان به سرانجام هم می‌رسد. پس از مرگ کافکا، دوست و فعال ادبی اش ماکس برود نوشته‌ ها را برای چاپ آماده کرد. برای دانستن این که چه کسانی به جای «ک» تصمیم میگیرند و سرانجام چه میشود بهتر است کتاب را بخوانید. ا. شربیانی

  • MJ Nicholls
    2019-05-23 19:58

    Somebody must have made a false accusation against me, for I was accused of not having read The Trial without having even raised the topic. I fixed up a brew, poked in a madeleine, and summoned up the liars of recall. I recalled my sixteen-year-old self, in his bedroom in his backwater home town, feasting on Vonnegut, Poe, and Kafka one miserable summer . . . then the liars spoke to me: “Are you merely inserting Kafka’s The Trial as a book you ought to have read during that summer of pain, when in actual fact . . . ?” I knew I had seen Orson Welles’s frenetic adaptation from the 60s, because I recall thinking: ‘I can’t remember this section from The Trial, I wonder what Welles invented.’ Because, perhaps, in actual fact, in spite of those proud teenage brags, I hadn’t actually read The Trial at all? I writhed in agony for two days, desperate to prise details of that first reading to appease my accusers. Then I simply checked out The Trial from the library and read the bastard. Quite possibly for the FIRST time. There we are. Masterpiece. Screw you, memory.

  • Perry
    2019-04-29 20:51

    A Crazy TrainAll Aboard!No novel will likely ever approach THE TRIAL in traducing the dark "justice" of the dictatorial governments that came to power after its 1925 publication, or, conversely, giving one a special, and by all means necessary, appreciation for the criminal justice system and fundamental rights granted those in the free world. Imagine: you are charged with a crime, but no one will tell you what that crime is, who specifically (what part of government) is charging you with the crime and/or is tasked with prosecuting the charges against you, where to read the law that prohibits the forbidden act, omission or conspiracy, when you committed the "crime," who accused you, the substance of the evidence against you (even in general terms), who or what was harmed, when your trial will take place, who will be charged with finding you guilty or innocent, what type of punishment you may face, whether you may appeal, among other missing items. Then, when you talk to court workers and even your own lawyer, there may be some nebulous way to avoid prosecution but no one can say exactly what that is and otherwise it's a foregone conclusion that you will be found guilty, your best hope being to drag out the process as long as you can just to stay alive as this crazy train hurtles toward your inevitable end.A historic, nightmarish novel that plants in its reader bad-dream seeds that may not germinate for years, but they will... yes, they will.

  • Dan Schwent
    2019-05-15 14:55

    On his thirtieth birthday, bank employee Josef K. is arrested for an unknown crime and prosecuted on certain Sundays by an unknown agency.Yeah, that's a pretty vague teaser but how else do you drag someone into The Trial?On the surface, The Trial is an absurd legal drama that nicely illustrates how inept bureaucracy can be. However, my little gray cells tell me that's just the tip of the iceberg. The Trial seems to be about how incomprehensible and absurd life can be at times. I don't think it's a coincidence that The Trial kicks off on Josef K.'s 30th birthday.Kafka's writing is stripped down but still powerful. Aside from The Metamorphosis, the tone reminds me a bit of G.K. Chesteron's The Napoleon of Notting Hill. The book feels like a Monty Python sketch at times. I caught myself grinning on occasion and not really sure if that was the appropriate reaction.The Trial isn't just about Josef's trial, it's also about the trial the trial becomes in Josef's life. And isn't life just one big trial anyway?The Trial. 4 out 5 stars. Case closed.

  • Henry Avila
    2019-05-16 18:05

    Josef K. (just his initial is revealed), a banker in the beautiful city of Prague, now the capital of the Czech Republic, during the last days of the crumbling Austro- Hungarian Empire, before World War 1, such a man at the young age of thirty, to be in charge of a large bank's finances, yet he lives in a boarding house of Frau Grabach, why a successful person does, is a mystery. Maybe he likes the attractive women there, especially Fraulein Burstner, Josef is a bit of a wolf, then out of the sky, two men come to his room and arrest him, the arrogant guards even eat his breakfast, and try to take his good clothes too, the charge, they don't say or know or care! K. is shocked to the bone, but permitted to continue his ordinary work routine, a Twilight Zonish situation develops, K. ordered to see an examining magistrate and goes to an old apartment building, in a poor, shabby suburb of the city, finally after asking directions, Josef arrives on the fifth floor, late and finding the filthy hall full of people of various kinds, all of them look at Josef, as the main attraction there . The uncaring judge thinks he's a house painter, when K. informs him that he's the chief financial officer of a bank, the crowd has a big, long laugh, how can Josef take his trial seriously? The angry magistrate is powerless to control the boisterous gathering, and after many more such meetings , in rooms with dirty air, which makes the defendant quite sick, Josef in one place, is carried out of the building, to get fresh air, to resuscitate him. Days and weeks pass, Uncle Karl, from the country visits K. the concerned uncle, has heard of his nephew's troubles, and takes him to an old lawyer friend, Dr. Huld, the lawyer has lots of contacts but Huld is a very sick, old man, K. doesn't trust him either or anybody else. Other men he sees for aid, a painter, merchant, manufacturer and a priest, as his final hope, but nothing can get him off, his unknown perilous path, his darkness increases steadily. A nightmarish life hits hard the accused , and still no one tells him what crime was committed! The helpless banker feels the power of the State's Bureaucracy and his work at the bank suffers, as a consequence, substantially, it matter not that K. is innocent, no one asks him if he is guilty! Will this bad, horrendous dream ever end? The limited rights that any man has against an omniscient , totalitarian government, is shown in this remarkable novel.

  • Lynn Beyrouthy
    2019-05-24 13:06

    WHAT IS THIS SHIT.I have read many reviews and saw that I belong to the minority who just didn’t like or get this book.Like the author, I am going to leave The Trial unfinished and surrender to the fact that, unfortunately, Franz Kafka’s writing is way too bizarre, inane and unrealistic for my tastes.The protagonist, a pretentious banker named Josef K. woke up one morning to find two strangers in his room who told him he was under arrest. The reason for his conviction is never revealed and even the officers who came to deliver the news are uniformed.In the next chapters, we follow K. in a series of encounters that are ground for meaningless and empty discussions with various characters that seldom reappear throughout the story and don’t seem to have an efficient role in the progress of the narrative. K’s so-called quest to seek answers and vindicate his name turn out to be futile as he never musters enough courage or audacity to extract definite answers and instead, allows his complacency to let him act in a way that harms him more than it helps him in his case. (I especially loved how almost every female character seem to want him, which feeds his arrogance all the more) For a year, Josef K awaits a trial that never happens; he’s never told the reason behind his criminal charge and the ultimate zenith of befuddlement comes with K’s death that is also underdone in mystifying circumstances. Nothing is explained or elucidated and yet people seem to abundantly laud Kafka for an unfinished, miserable excuse for a novel which the author himself wanted to be burned posthumously. It really saddens me ‘cause after hearing copious praise for Kafka, the anticipation upon starting this novel was great and I was eager to be acquainted with his “genius”, but my high expectations were annihilated by an immense disappointment.The Trial is among the most disturbing books I’ve laid eyes on to this day. It was an excruciating experience from which my brain cells are still suffering aftershocks. The atmosphere of the novel was so odd and gruesome; the rooms with low ceilings and stuffy, fetid offices made me feel like I’m having a bizarre nightmare. (Well, at least it’s better than his other unfinished book about a man metamorphosed into an insect). Kafka intentionally delineated an inhuman world inflicted with the depravity of the law (which is ironic because Kafka was a lawyer himself). And when you finally finish this story of 200ish pages (but you feel like it’s 2000, I don’t know how Kafka managed to do that), you’re supposed to be in a state of awe ‘cause it’s so fucking deep and philosophical, aiming to depict life and the big fat interrogation point behind our existence and its purpose. Well. That was a waste of time. Max Brod should’ve listened to Kafka and set fire to his manuscripts. There, I said it.

  • Samra Yusuf
    2019-05-19 17:04

    I vividly remember asking my mother at quite earlier in my years, from where do we get babies, did you buy me from god? The corners of her eyes crinkled, she was reddened deep in effort to try not to burst in her husky laughter, I remember her asking me back with her flushed face, and what do you be doing with answer? I said quite prudently and emphatically, I want to have some. I don’t know where the tail of this baby-talk ended, but I didn’t manage to have any, to this date, albeit being conversant of the source. And the core of Kafka’s trial lays in this state of unknowingness whetted by the utter frustration to know. Joseph K is not so much mad at being held house arrested, he merely is surprised by the two agents seeming in his apartment at the first ray of sun, he is little bothered at the mention of ‘trial’. All his focus is on keep claiming himself ‘innocent’, this insistence is of no use as the priest says: "But that is how the guilty speak"So, to claim himself innocent is a proof enough of his guilt, then where he stands in the case? He is at defeat at the very start, as never will he see his accusers nor will come to learn what he is accused of, and ironically, he never stands at a trial, there simply isn’t any, Joseph is trapped in faceless fate that strikes him from behind the dark, he has no Judge in view who judges him, and on what basis, no court to plea, and evidently no Laws to speak of (or prudent lawyers for that matter) I’d cease myself belittling the focus of it’s existential angst and absurdity of life by tagging it an “allegory to original sin “The Trial speaks of and about, every single being entombed in the totalitarian coop of so-called convictions and their representative faceless deities, Story and characterization are not the meat here, Kafka can be pardoned on that account, as the plot droll you at times as their aren’t any active actions ,painstaking effort’s made on tiniest of details, to make the impression vibrant, but the picture as a whole is hopelessly blurred; thus even the reader is left frustrated, and each of us will be prone to understand this trial as per our own perception.And as for Joseph, he was ignorant of the parable narrated by priest, gullible enough to entertain hope and naïve enough to prostrate before a faceless savior, as he lays dying “like a dog” and we don’t sense any empathy, we simply condemn him for his belief in law, and his pointless life led into a horrendous death in pursuit of salvation, as there’s nothing beyond death!

  • Kinga
    2019-04-26 21:11

    Kafka's Trial is one of those books that are always present in cultural sphere and referenced ad nauseum. Despite never having read Kafka before I am quite sure I used the word 'Kafkaesque' on many occasions and maintained a semi-eloquent conversation about 'The Trial'.I could've probably done without ever reading it but recently I resolved to take my literary pursuits seriously and since books seem to be the only thing in this world I truly care for I might as well take it to another level.'The Trial' does not have any plot to speak of and character development is non-existent. There aren't actually any characters that take any human shape. There is no conflict or resolution and the only epiphany is the one you might or might not have at the end of it. Truth be told, 'The Trial' is nothing but an allegory.An allegory of what is up to you to decide. I think I interpret it on the most universal level and see The Trial as a symbol of human existence. We don't know why we are here, how it is going to end and even what the rules of the game are. Yet, we take this frustrating journey trying to make sense of it, comforted by little meaningless bogus victories that fool us into believing some progress has been made. We long ago learnt that the 'actual acquittal' is unattainable but we refuse to give up. This is how I see it. However, many literary critics and other smart people see it differently and that is their prerogative.There is, for example, a quite interesting theory that 'The Trial' was born as an inmediate result of the break-up of Kafka's engagement to Felice Bauer. Felice Bauer was, one might say, an uncomplicated woman. She was Kafka's muse and his anchor in the reality. Kafka needed her to write and to stay sane. What Felice got out of the affair is unclear as her letters didn't survive. No doubt, it must have been frustrating as Kafka's idea of love was definitely not a healthy one. Their relationship consituted mostly of letters and occasional meetings which made Kafka the happiest just after they were over. He did finally propose to Felice but emphasized he would be a rather rubbish husband as he was simply not cut out for family life. And so it went on. If anyone felt like they were on an endless, incomprehensible trial, it was, in my opinion, Felice. But, of course, Franz maintains it was him - because finally Felice's friends and relatives decided to put an end to it, called Kafka in, forced him to knock it off and leave the poor girl alone. That meeting/interrogation was his 'trial'.Now, I don't want to entertain this theory because if it is true, I would have to reduce the rating for 'Trial' to some 2-3 stars and put it on my 'brats' shelf I have for selfish, woe-is-me individuals acting like brats. I prefer to stick to the human-existence allegory which I find quite moving in its Weltschmertz way.If you are interested in further reading on the subject, check John Banville's article about Kafka's Trial and his affair with Fraulein Bauer here: can also find fictionalised (by Francine Prose) letter from Felice Bauer to Kafka in this collection of invented love letters : Four Letter Word: Invented Correspondence from the Edge of Modern Romance. The letter is written by Felice long after Kafka's death and basically asserts that Kafka was a dick.

  • Fil
    2019-05-05 21:09

    First, a quick summary of this horrible, horrible novel. Some jackass gets arrested, he does things you would not do, sees people you would not see and has thoughts you would not have. After that, a priest and a parable then, mercifully, the end.Now my thoughts. K. is a pompous ass with a very important job - to him. The bureaucrats are the best part of the whole story, all job description, no brains (like now!). K's uncle, lawyer and landlady are very forgettable. Fräulein Bürstner is intriguing, so is Titorelli. The priest is a tool and his parable made me think I was reading the novelisation of "The Never Ending Story". The ending made me smile, it was the end after all.

  • Zaphirenia
    2019-05-09 17:18

    Ο Κάφκα δεν αστειεύεται. Σου βυθίζει το μαχαίρι στο κόκκαλο και παρόλα αυτά παρακολουθείς μουδιασμένος. Αφήνει στο στόμα την πικρή αίσθηση της ματαιότητας, του παραλόγου που είναι τόσο προφανές που καταλήγει αδιαπέραστο, ανίκητο. Παρουσιάζει ένα ολοκληρωτικού τύπου σύστημα δικαιοσύνης που συνθλίβει το άτομο σε μία ατέρμονη γραφειοκρατία από την οποία δεν υπάρχει διέξοδος, δεν υπάρχει διαφυγή. Ο ήρωας του βιβλίου, ο Γιόζεφ Κ., συλλαμβάνεται με μία κατηγορία την οποία δεν μαθαίνει. Ποτέ. Στη συνέχεια, αγωνίζεται να αποδείξει την αθωότητά του απέναντι σε ένα απρόσωπο Δικαστήριο το οποίο παρότι βρίσκεται παντού, είναι ωστόσο αόρατο για τον κατηγορούμενο, ο οποίος δεν μπορεί να το κατανοήσει. Ο παραλογισμός στον οποίο βυθίζεται ο ήρωας, ο οποίος παρασύρεται στην αγωνιώδη προσπάθεια να αποδείξει ότι είναι αθώος (σε ποιον; για ποιο αδίκημα;) κορυφώνεται στη σκηνή με τον ιερέα, όπου του αποκαλύπτεται πλέον πλήρως και καθαρά ότι δεν πρόκειται να γνωρίσει τον Νόμο, δεν θα μπορέσει να διαπεράσει τις δομές του όσο και αν πασχίσει, όσα στοιχεία και εάν συλλέξει (στην πραγματικότητα βέβαια, καθόλη τη διάρκεια της Δίκης, ο ήρωας δεν καταφέρνει να συγκεντρώσει ούτε ένα αποδεικτικό στοιχείο, πράγμα πολύ λογικό αν σκεφτούμε ότι δεν έχει ιδέα ποιο είναι το έγκλημα για το οποίο κατηγορείται). Ακολουθεί πρώτα η απόγνωση και μετά η ολοκληρωτική παράδοση στη μοίρα του. Γιατί στον κόσμο της "Δίκης" δεν έχει καμία σημασία η ενοχή ή η αθωότητα, δεν παίζει κανένα ρόλο το είδος της κατηγορίας, το αν έχει κανείς δικηγόρο ή όχι, το αν ασχολείται με την υπόθεσή του ή την αφήνει να πάρει το δρόμο της ακολουθώντας την αδυσώπητη διοικητική μηχανή που κινείται ασταμάτητα.Διαβάζοντας, ένα συναίσθημα με κυρίευσε και εμένα μαζί με τον Κ. σε κλιμακούμενη ένταση: η απόγνωση. Η συνειδητοποίηση ότι στον κόσμο αυτό της "Δίκης" δεν έχει καμία θέση ο κοινός νους, ο Ορθός Λόγος, γιατί το Παράλογο είναι παρόν και διεκδικεί (και κερδίζει) τον τίτλο της κανονικότητας. Η απόγνωση που μέχρι το τέλος του βιβλίου έχει μετατραπεί σε τρόμο.

  • Joselito Honestly and Brilliantly
    2019-04-30 20:15

    Look at Joseph K., a bank officer living in a country with a constitution. He wakes up one day with strange men in his apartment telling him he's under arrest. Why or for what offense, no one knows. The arresting officers themselves don't know and can't tell him. Even if he's under arrest, however, no one picks him up or locks him in jail. He can still go to his office, work, perform his customary daily chores, and do whatever he wants to do as he awaits his trial. But he is understandably anxious and worried. He is, after all, charged with an unknown but very grave offense. He has a criminal case. He is an accused. He is under arrest.For this problem he consults so many. He gets a lawyer. His uncle comes to his aid. He talks with his lawyer's other client--also charged and under arrest like him. He consults other people, a painter (who is said to know the "Court"), some women, a priest, etc. about his case. But no one can tell him what the charge is and what his sentence will be. The "Examining Magistrate," the "Judges," the "Court," the proceedings/ trial, and even the "Law" itself--they all seem to be unsolvable enigmas.Now, look at yourself. You were born or made to exist without your consent. You live, you do whatever comes to your mind worth doing, you marry or stay single, maybe you've married already and are raising a family, you may be living a life of fame or anonymity, amassing riches or just getting by, happy or sad. But the whys and wherefores of all these, why you're here in the first place, why you're doing whatever it is you're doing, if you have a purpose or was just an accident, if you will outlive your physical death, see God or see darkness, witness corrective justice for all the wrongs you've witnessed or heard about--all these you do not know and never will know. Sometimes you'd think, with all these uncertainties and frightful unknowns it would have been better that you did not exist at all. But you had no choice. You're condemned to this life and had been charged. You can't "not exist" and escape. You are under arrest.So you seek help. You'll try religion, common sense, reason, study the affairs of men, look back in history, see what the living and dead prophets and philosophers have to say, pray to God and his saints, ask Oprah, google your questions, but all these offer no certitude. Then, you will still die, and you would die bewildered and afraid and, like the death of Joseph K. himself in this novel, your death will be no different from that of a dog--"...Then one of them opened his frock coat and out of a sheath that hung from a belt girt round his waistcoat drew a long, thin, double-edged butcher's knife, held it up, and tested the cutting edges in the moonlight. Once more the odious courtesies began, the first handed the knife across K. to the second, who handed it across K. back again to the first. K. now perceived clearly that he was supposed to seize the knife himself, as it traveled from hand to hand above him, and plunge it into his own breast. But he did not do so, he merely turned his head, which was still free to move, and gazed around him. He could not completely rise to the occasion, he could not relieve the officials of all their tasks; the responsibility for this last failure of his lay with him who had not left him the remnant of strength necessary for the deed. His glance fell on the top story of the house adjoining the quarry. With a flicker as of a light going up, the casements of a window there suddenly flew open; a human figure, faint and insubstantial at that distance and that height, leaned abruptly far forward and stretched both arms still farther. Who was it? A friend? A good man? Someone who sympathized? Someone who wanted to help? Was it one person only? Or was it mankind? Was help at hand? Were there arguments in his favor that had been overlooked? Of course there must be. Logic is doubtless unshakable, bit it cannot withstand a man who wants to go on living. Where was the Judge whom he had never seen? Where was the High Court, to which he had never penetrated? He raised his hands and spread out all his fingers."But the hands of one of the partners were already at K.'s throat, while the other thrust the knife deep into his heart and turned it there twice. With failing eyes K. could still see the two of them immediately before him, cheek leaning against cheek, watching the final act. 'Like a dog!' he said; it was as if the shame of it must outlive him."A must read for the insanely delirious ones: those who live without thinking and therefore unaware that they, too, are indicted and are under arrest.

  • Saleh MoonWalker
    2019-05-09 14:09

    داستانی با پس زمینه اگزیستانسیال.داستان نثر مناسبی داره و در بیان جزئیات روزمره هم خوب عمل کرده. وسواس فکری رو خوب نشون داده و در نهایت با بیان غیر مستقیم نیاز به زندگی کردنِ کاملِ زندگی، در داخل دسته بندی داستانهایی با ترس از مرگ به خاطر کامل زندگی نکردن قرار میگیره. یه داستان داخل این داستان مطرح میشه در مورد مردی که پشت دری ایستاده و اجازه ورود پیدا نمیکنه. جواب این داستان/معما رو از زبان دکتر یالوم نقل می کنم که تنها دلیل نهایی داستان این بود که اون فرد زندگی خودش رو به سر حد مناسبی زندگی نکرده بود و زندگی خودش رو برای رسیدن به اهدافی پوچ کاملا تباه کرده بود که در نهایت با مرگ به پایان رسید. نکته جالب این داستان اینه که این داستان دقیقا خلاصه داستان اصلی شخصیت اصلی همین کتابه، یعنی در واقع چیزی که توی کل این کتاب نوشته شده رو میشد توی چند صفحه خلاصه کرد که نکته مخفی و اصلی داستانه که حدس میزنم کافکا این کار رو از عمد کرده که طعنه آمیز بودن قضیه رو نشون بده که چیزی که میشه توی چند صفحه بیانش کرد و نکته ش اینه که زندگیتونو حروم نکنید رو توی 342 صفحه نوشته تا بگه که زندگیتونو حروم نکنید. شاید هم هدفش این بوده که فقط کسانی که لیاقتشو دارن به این نکته برسن چون واقعا داستان دوم به صورت دقیقی طراحی شده و معمای خوبیه.Logic may indeed be unshakeable, but it cannot withstand a man who is determined to live.

  • Ian
    2019-05-08 21:08

    Who Dared Seize Him?Ever since first reading this novel in school, I've assumed the word "Kafkaesque" described an aspect of society analogous to living under a totalitarian state.For much of this thoroughly enjoyable re-read, I persisted with this view.However, when Joseph K. is arrested with no apparent justification, he is more surprised than an inhabitant of a fascist state. He asks:"Who could these men be? What were they talking about? What authority could they represent? K. lived in a country with a legal constitution, there was universal peace, all the laws were in force; who dared seize him in his own dwelling?"You'd think that, with all the hallmarks of a modern civilisation in place, you'd be free from the risk of arbitrary arrest.A natural reaction is that it might be a joke. However, it's not funny for very long, certainly not for the twelve month process K. must endure.Officials on HighApart from the apparent absence of a reason for K.'s arrest, the atmosphere isn't as oppressive as I recalled. It's inexplicable for K., yet somehow routine and unremarkable for everybody else. It doesn't evoke an outcry (except, understandably, from K.). It's as if this turn of events is uncommon, but it could still happen to any of us at any time. Not because we live in a totalitarian state, but because we might have committed a crime. But what if K. doesn't believe he has actually done anything wrong?K. isn't incarcerated pending trial. For all the empty formality of the Law, everybody he deals with is meticulous in their observance of etiquette. They're amiable, courteous, helpful and apologetic, not to mention sometimes obsequious and solicitous. Whoever is wielding this power, exercising this authority, is wearing velvet gloves:"I don't in the least blame them, it is the organisation that is to blame, the high officials who are to blame."Only he can't find any trace of these high officials. He only ever seems to encounter lowly officials. Still, power is exercised and punishment occurs at this level. One official says, with a hint of the banal:"I am here to whip people, and whip them I shall."The Danger of IndifferenceAll the power that is exercised against K. makes him wonder whether (like Mersault would later do in Albert Camus' "The Stranger") he should remain indifferent to his plight. However, here, K.'s uncle warns him that he will have no chance of proving his innocence if he is submissive. He suggests that he flee the city and come to the country:"I only made the suggestion because I thought your indifference would endanger the case..."A Free Man in ChainsJoseph K.'s only crime seems to be that he is a free man, going about his own business. He is a risk assessor in a bank, presumably someone educated, an intellectual of sorts, a free thinker.Early on, he says, "A man can't help being rebellious." Eventually, he reflects that "it's often safer to be in chains than to be free."My ConfessionAfter a while, I started to deliberate whether the novel was about authority and authoritarianism at a more generic level than the State.So, what is it that places chains on mankind? The Courts just serve the Law. Is the Law wholly rational, or does it serve some other authority? Whose justice does it dispense?"The Court is quite impervious to proof...You must remember that in these Courts things are always coming up for discussion that are simply beyond reason, people are too tired and distracted to think, and so they take refuge in superstition."In the CathedralBit by bit, as the novel progressed, I questioned whether Kafka's real target was the authority that religion has over our lives.The penultimate chapter occurs in the Cathedral. Some of Kafka's language sounds almost biblical:"The Court makes no claims upon you. It receives you when you come and it relinquishes you when you go...You see, everything belongs to the Court."Yet what got me speculating most was sentences like this:"Whatever he may seem to us, he is yet a servant of the Law; that is, he belongs to the Law and as such is set beyond human judgement."It mightn't have been possible in the original German, but if you substitute "the Lord" for "the Law" (or "the Court") in these sentences, the result suggests that the greatest claim to authority is that of religion (even when it often claims to be above the Law).Is God the unseen higher source of authority and the Church the organisation behind K.'s arrest? Was it God's churchwardens who dared to seize him?Is life an ongoing trial under God's Law?Original SinIf this speculation has any legs, then "The Trial" might be concerned with the concept of original sin. Is original sin a crime with which each of us has been charged without our knowledge, without any proof and without any guilt? "In the end, out of nothing at all, an enormous fabric of guilt will be conjured up."Free WillBy extension, if the idea of original sin derives from God, are we deluded in clinging to the concept of free will, when God sits above us all, exercising ultimate control, pre-disposing us to sin?If so, the Trial might be a metaphor for the supernatural process of God looking over and judging us every moment of our lives, until we are granted permission to enter Heaven.Ultimately, K.'s only crime seems to be the individualistic pride that makes him cling to free will and prevents him submitting to God's will and law. But in the eyes of the Lord/the Law, it is the greatest crime there is.(view spoiler)[God Works Through Trials"2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials,3 Knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience."James 1:2-3"Thank You Lord (For the Trials That Come My Way)" The Barrister's Song (hide spoiler)]The Throng of GossipI've always thought of this novel as a five star achievement. Re-reading it, I've realised that what convinced me of its status was probably the power of Kafka's vision and ideas. What struck me this time was the quality of the writing. For all the claustrophobic abstraction, Kafka grounds the novel in evocative and descriptive prose. There's even a bit of humour:"Down the whole length of the street at regular intervals, below the level of the pavement, were planted little general grocery shops, to which short flights of steps led down. Women were thronging into and out of these shops or gossiping on the steps outside. A fruit hawker who was crying his wares to the people in the windows above, progressing almost as inattentively as K. himself, almost knocked K. down with his push-cart. A phonograph which had seen long service in a better quarter of the town began stridently to murder a tune."["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>

  • Czarny Pies
    2019-05-11 14:14

    Franz Kafka's Trial is one of the basic works of Twentieth Century literature that everyone should read. It stands the paradigm of the Whodunit on its head. We know from the first chapter that the hero K is the guilty person. We spend the rest of the novel trying to find out what on earth his crime was.The Trial asks the big questions in a startling manner. Man has created a cruel and indifferent society ruled by an absurd bureaucracy. Has God also created an absurd world?At the end of the book Kafka gives us the parable of the man who waits at the gate of heaven waiting to be let in. At the end of his life the gatekeeper arrives to close the door and inform the man that he will not be allowed to enter. The man then asks why if the door leads to Heaven has no one else come to seek entry. The gatekeeper explains that every man has his own private door to heaven.The Trial is eerie, funny and tragic. It is a must read.After you read the book find a copy of Orson Welles' movie version with Anthony Perkins and Jeanne Moreau.

  • Kaph
    2019-04-29 20:21

    Verdict: A tome of existentialist tripe so bleak and pointless there isn’t even a trial.There comes a point in the evolution all art; visual, literary, musical, wherein those who create it eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil and become too self aware. ‘Look at this medium,’ they proclaim. ‘We have been following rules, society imposed rules limiting what our work can be, limiting what *we* can be!’ It shines suddenly and clearly before them, conventions that were never questioned are suddenly dissolved, exploded. The artist is then free to write, to draw, to compose with a clear head and a fresh soul. It is this Übermensch moment that led Duchamp to graffiti an upturned urinal and display it in the Academy. It is what led to the design of the Barbican. It is what led Kafka to write The Trial. It is a horrible, horrible moment.I won’t mince words; I loathe this book. It manages to be all the worst parts of self-indulgent, self-effacing, ponderous and pointless. It is a hateful book. This too was forced upon by the Texas Independent School District as part of their on-going campaign to Stop Kids Reading. Up until then I had read only decent books and it was a shock to realize any crap could be a classic as long the author was foreign and the subject was avant garde. The Trial isn’t so much a story as a needlessly complicated suicide note.A man is informed he is on trial, but not for what. Throughout the chapters he is gradually (and by his own stupid volition) separated from his friends and family. Each chapter he meets a set of unsettling people and they talk mildly depressing gibberish before disappearing from the story forever. At the end, the main character ends up in some sort of newly surreal, inexplicable and unexplained hall of light where he dies in a similar fashion. I’d call that a spoiler but there was never really another way for this book to go. There is no trial. That, more than anything really pissed me off.Nothing occurs in this book. It’s just a collage of conversations Franz has had with the nihilistic voices in his head. They should have been put down in a diary and read by a reputable psychoanalyst, not published in 37 languages and crammed down the maw of 16 year olds. God is dead. Choice is an illusion. Reason and logic are comforting lies we tell ourselves and death is the only certainty. This is nothing we hadn’t heard before from My Chemical Romance so why our teachers thought we needed additional reasons to cut ourselves and go overboard on eye-makeup I’ll never know. Existentialism is and forever will be a dirty word to me and The Trial gets a 1.#26Title The Trial by Franz KafkaWhen Autumn 2002Why Read for sophomore EnglishRating 1

  • Nandakishore Varma
    2019-05-02 19:53

    I have been terminated from my job here in the Middle East and is currently in the process of relocating to India. It's a somewhat nightmarish scenario, uprooting oneself after ten years; that too, unexpectedly. So I am plagued by disturbing dreams in the night where I am caught in situations without escape (forgetting luggage at the airport, searching for house in a country whose language is unknown to you, etc.). This is pretty much common for me and these dreams will disappear once I am past the crisis. I think, in a way, they are therapeutic.While browsing Goodreads just now, I was struck by how much my dreams resemble Kafka's novels. In the novel under discussion for example, K. is accused of an unspecified crime, and he wanders around trying to clear himself or at least find in what sense he is guilty - unsuccessfully. What gives the novel its nightmarish quality is that there is no continuity and the story moves in jerks. Situations are repeated again and again until we feel hemmed in. However, there is still an unreality to the whole thing that we feel that sooner or later, K. and the reader will wake up.Before I read him, I had been told that Kafka is a tough writer. He is not. He is very easy to read. The problem is that, you may not be able to stomach the endless loop his characters traverse without getting anywhere: if that's so, he's just not your cup of tea and best avoided. But for people like me who prefer disturbing stories as a sort of antidote to much more disturbing reality, this is an ideal read.

  • Pantelis
    2019-05-19 17:17

    This is a novel about guilt, although Josef K. appears not to know why he is under trial... Everyone is guilty of something.... If you are told that you are guilty of something untold, I am sure you know what you are guilty of, without being told... Guilt, secret guilt, abyssmal guilt... That's why the novel has a beginning, an end but not a middle, it carries an infinity within it, an endless wandering inside a bureaucratic labyrinth, a juridical labyrinth, the labyrinth of Kafka's and every reader's conscience...

  • Holly
    2019-05-07 13:19

    Sometimes when book bothers me, I read more by the same auther to develope my sense of the author's style and personality. This book, however, did the opposite, after finishing it I had the same thought, "this is brillian but why does the author write such fantastical situations." I finally "get" this guys genius after I read a quote in a book I am reading now that says, "all good fiction does not necessarily depict reality as much as it uncovers truth." FINALLY, I got it. I get Kafka and can more readily supply the words that convey my appreciation of him. Through his fantastical depitions of the world he heightens the readers sense of what is and is not appropriate. It is almost like painting a scene of truth with strange vibrant and unnatural colors that stand out from the rest of the surroundings. Kafka's works really speak to the subconscious, especially in the way it resembles a dreaming state. It takes a little work if you insisit on translating and applying it to reality, but it is worthwhile.

  • Cecily
    2019-05-18 21:14

    Quintissential Kafka, apparently prompted by an unexpected interrogation in a Berlin hotel room re his intentions re Felice, conducted by her and a couple of friends. Officials of a vague and unspecified court arrest K for an unspecified crime - but he never queries the charge. An endless stream of futile investigations and obscure legal practices ensue. A metaphor for exploring the meaning (or otherwise) of life, the burden of duty, and struggling to find salvation aided by the intercessions of dubious religions/priests? K’s helplessness is emphasised on occasions such as when he physically collapsed (at the law offices), when he can't understand an Italian dialect, and when the cathedral gets dark in the middle of the day. Kafka was a fan of Dostoyevsky, and there are clear echoes of Crime and Punishment.Two chapters, The Dream and Before the Law, were published separately in a collection of short stories known as A Country Doctor, which was then published with The Metamorphosis. See my Kafka-related bookshelf (

  • Vit Babenco
    2019-05-21 18:16

    “After all, K. lived in a state governed by law, there was universal peace, all statutes were in force; who dared assault him in his own lodgings?”The state is an ogre… The citizen is a pygmy… And an ogre can do with a pygmy whatever it wishes… But ogres prefer to eat pygmies and for appearance’s sake they use law… And to apply law there are courts and bureaucracy.“The gradations and ranks of the court are infinite, extending beyond the ken even of initiates. The proceedings in the courts of law are generally a mystery to the lower officials as well; therefore they can almost never follow the progress of the cases they are working on throughout their course; the case enters their field of vision, often they know not whence, and continues on, they know not where.”Once the machinery of soulless bureaucracy started working, there is no way to stop it.“An apparent acquittal is handled differently. There is no further change in the files except for adding to them the certification of innocence, the acquittal, and the grounds for the acquittal. Otherwise they remain in circulation; following the law court’s normal routine they are passed on to the higher courts, come back to the lower ones, swinging back and forth with larger or smaller oscillations, longer or shorter interruptions. These paths are unpredictable. Externally it may sometimes appear that everything has been long since forgotten, the file has been lost, and the acquittal is absolute. No initiate would ever believe that. No file is ever lost, and the court never forgets.”To the state, there is no such thing as an innocent person. If an individual doesn’t obey the state, the state exterminates an individual as a vermin.