Der Prozess PDF â Paperback

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 wedded to the madness of totalitarianism The Trial has resonated with chilling truth for generations of readers

10 thoughts on “Der Prozess

  1. says:

    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 workisbrilliant 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 UnfortunatelyStupid which happened 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 than enough to make this an experience I intend to repeat until I get it rightor 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 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 that Kafka was saying so many 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 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