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The Trial by Franz Kafka
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The Trial (original 1925; edition 1995)

by Franz Kafka

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13,778149152 (4.01)483
Member:HydrogenGuy
Title:The Trial
Authors:Franz Kafka
Info:Schocken (1995), Edition: Definitive, Paperback
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:fiction, post-modern, surrealism, you are number 6

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The Trial by Franz Kafka (1925)

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English (122)  Dutch (5)  Italian (5)  Spanish (4)  French (3)  Danish (2)  German (2)  Norwegian (1)  Finnish (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  Hebrew (1)  Swedish (1)  All languages (148)
Showing 1-5 of 122 (next | show all)
By the most shallow interpretation this is a pessimist's simple metaphor for life: we are born/arrested without consent, then subjected to unfairness beyond our control unto death. The introduction would have me look more deeply for Judaic-Talmudic references (wouldn't know one if it slapped me), messages about sexuality (I do tend to see those), or a prophetic rendering of the fate of Jewish citizens in Eastern Europe during World War II. It would also not be difficult to read several of the characters as self-doubt personified, reflecting the way each of us is prone to criticize or overthink our own actions in an adverse environment.

The plot wasn't so dull as I feared it might be, since Joseph K. has freedom of movement and makes the most of it. He tries every emotional response to his straits but to no avail. Whether he rails against the irrationality of his captors or attempts to reason with them, it's all for naught. He comes on too strongly with women and is too self-centered, sometimes aggressive with those he judges inferior, but there's never any clue dropped to suggest what he's charged with. He never aggressively seeks his right to know, but that's of a piece with the metaphor: once it is determined that life is unfair, there's little point in asking why. ( )
1 vote Cecrow | Jul 29, 2016 |
1987 and 2012. i got it more when i was older. paranoia city. ( )
  Joseph_W_Naus | Jul 20, 2016 |
Basically, you are fucked! And there’s not much you can do about it. Sure, you can fret, or whine and cry, or may be even try putting up a brave fight. But that may or may not do much good to your case. Because things like these never really get resolved in life. Though, giving up everything and not doing anything is not an option either. That is to say you have absolutely no control over your situation. To use Kafka’s own words, “The best thing to do might be to come to terms with the circumstances…” and keep battling on with that faint glimmer of hope and reason that drive us.

Something or someone might come to your aid. It might look like a rescue. But then you can never be too sure how that might pan out. For all you know, it may only end up making your case even more miserable. Nobody seems to have made it till today. One thing is almost certain - there is no true acquittal here. Nope. That is simply out of the question. Of course, there are legends about people who have won the battle against this miserable universe, although they may be just that - legends. There might be certain element of truth to it though. Otherwise how could so many people believe in them? It’s just that no one to this day has ever actually encountered someone who has been truly acquitted. Though there is no surety that all is lost either. But you decide if it is a consolation or only more horrifying. For what more is to come? So you blindly navigate the alleys of life until one day you get put down, in Kafka’s words, like a dog.

Using the legal system as a façade, Kafka has described life as it is – mostly senseless and often brutal. There’s no direction to it and there is no end in sight. It’s terrifying and meaningless. May be that was the reason he didn't see much use in publishing his work and had ordered it to be burned after his death. The book is a trippy ride. Till you get half way through it seems like some bizarre dream and almost managed to leave me exasperated in the middle. Only after that will you start seeing some order in chaos. But by the time you begin to get a hold of it Kafka will fuck your mind inside-out and end it in the most unsatisfying manner. Don’t expect any closure here.

This book is a work of genius and nothing sums it up like Albert Camus’s quote about it on its back cover – “It is the fate and perhaps the greatness of The Trial that it offers everything and confirms nothing.”
( )
1 vote Adarsh_Nargundkar | Jun 12, 2016 |
Kafka. I fell in love with his writing in high school and never finished any of them. Now I did. Going to do it again. ( )
  kthxy | May 6, 2016 |
This book was hard for me because I related so well with the character. It's a nightmarish story, really, of "Joseph K, a respectable functionary in a bank, who is suddenly arrested and must defend his innocence against a charge about which he can get no information". His confusion, frustration, and absolute helplessness were so tangible and too close to heart for me. So while this is on my "couldn't finish" shelf, it's not because it was boring or poorly written, but that the character drew me in perfectly. ( )
  MahanaU | Feb 26, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 122 (next | show all)
Una mañana cualquiera, Josef K., joven empleado de un banco, se despierta en la pensión donde reside con la extraña visita de unos hombres que le comunican que está detenido -aunque por el momento seguirá libre-. Le informan de que se ha iniciado un proceso contra él, y le aseguran que conocerá los cargos a su debido tiempo. Así comienza una de las más memorables y enigmáticas pesadillas jamás escritas. Para el protagonista, Josef K., el proceso laberíntico en el que inesperadamente se ve inmerso supone una toma de conciencia de sí mismo, un despertar que le obliga a reflexionar sobre su propia existencia, sobre la pérdida de la inocencia y la aparición de la muerte. La lectura de El proceso produce cierto «horror vacui» pues nos sumerge en una existencia absurda, en el filo de la navaja entre la vida y la nada.
added by Pakoniet | editLecturalia
 

» Add other authors (654 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kafka, Franzprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Parry, IdrisTranslatormain authorsome editionsconfirmed
Brod, MaxEpiloguesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Brod, MaxEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Butler, E. M.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cober, Alan E.Illustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ferrater, GabrielTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fosshag, BengtIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hermsdorf, KlausAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Koch, Hans-GerdEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kurpershoek, TheoCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lambourne, NigelPhotogrammessecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mitchell, BreonTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Muir, EdwinTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Muir, WillaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nahuys, Alice vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Oldenburg, PeterCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Salter, GeorgeIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Simojoki, AukustiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Zampa, GiorgioTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Someone must have been telling lies about Joseph K., for without having done anything wrong he was arrested one fine morning.
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"The Court wants nothing from you. It receives you when you come and it dismisses you when you go."
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0805209999, Paperback)

The story of The Trial's publication is almost as fascinating as the novel itself. Kafka intended his parable of alienation in a mysterious bureaucracy to be burned, along with the rest of his diaries and manuscripts, after his death in 1924. Yet his friend Max Brod pressed forward to prepare The Trial and the rest of his papers for publication. When the Nazis came to power, publication of Jewish writers such as Kafka was forbidden; Kafka's writings, many of which have distinctively Jewish themes, did not find a broad audience until after World War II. (Hannah Arendt once observed that although "during his lifetime he could not make a decent living, [Kafka] will now keep generations of intellectuals both gainfully employed and well-fed.") Among the current crop of Kafka heirs is Breon Mitchell, the translator of this edition of The Trial. Rather than tidying up Kafka's unconventional grammar and punctuation (as previous translators have done), Mitchell captures the loose, uneasy, even uncomfortable constructions of Kafka's original story. His translation technique is the only way to convey the comedy and confusion of this narrative, in which Josef K., "without having done anything truly wrong," is arrested, tried, convicted and executed--on a charge that is never disclosed to him. --Michael Joseph Gross

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:13 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

A new edition of Kafka's classic work--certain to become the new standard.

(summary from another edition)

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10 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141182903, 0141194715

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