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America : Vintage Classics - Franz Kafka

America

Vintage Classics

By: Franz Kafka, Edwin Muir (Introduction by)

Paperback

Published: 3rd January 1998
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Published: 31st August 2012
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In AMERICA Kafka's key obsessions appear and reappear; his desire to avoid power by transforming himself into something small or disappearing altogether, and his belief in the infinite ambiguity of life and art. The gaps in the novel are unimportant - had Kafka filled them we would simply have begun to notice other gaps elsewhere. . . AMERICA tells the story of Karl Rossmann, a young innocent in America, banished there by his father because he had been seduced by a servant girl. Superficially it bears little resemblance to THE CASTLE or THE TRIAL and yet, with typical obstinacy, its world of ships, hotels and offices grows stranger and stranger, more comic and bewildering, the more realistically it is described.

About the Author

The son of a well-to-do merchant, FRANZ KAFKA was born in Prague in 1883 and died of tuberculosis in a sanatorium near Vienna in 1924. After earning a law degree in 1906, he worked most of his adult life at the Workers Accident Insurance Company for the Kingdom of Bohemia in Prague. Only a small portion of his writings were published during his lifetime; most of them, including the three unfinished novels, AMERIKA, THE TRIAL, and THE CASTLE, were published posthumously.

"No other voice has borne truer witness to the dark of our times" -- George Steiner "He is the greatest German writer of our time. Such poets as Rilke or such novelists as Thomas Mann are dwarfs or plaster saints in comparison to him" * Vladimir Nabokov *

Franz Kafka

Despite his great impact on the literary world, Franz Kafka was a relatively "unknown" author during his life-time. He published relatively few of his works, and those were published in very limited runs, or in small literary journals.

Franz Kafka born in Prague, July 3, 1883, the son of Hermann and Julie Kafka. The oldest, he had three suriving younger sisters. Valli, Elli, and Ottla. His father was a self-made middle class Jewish merchant, who raised his children in the hopes of assimilating them into the mainstream society of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

The official ruling language of the empire was German, so Franz attended German grammar school (Volksschule am Fleischmarkt), and later the German Gymnasium (Altstädter Deutsches Gymnasium). He finished his Doctorate of Law in Prague, studying at the German language University (Die deutsche Universität) there. He initially gained employment at a private insurance firm Assicurazioni Generali and then with the Arbeiter-Unfall-Versicherungs-Anstalt für das Königreichs Böhmen in Prag

His Job at the Worker's Accident Insurance provided him with a steady income and "regular" office hours, so that he could dedicate his evenings to writing. His diaries contain continuing accounts of his restlessness and sleeplessness as he would work all night writing, only to return to the office for the next day of work, throughly exhausted. Although he spoke and wrote Czech fluently throughout his life, his literary work was all completed in German.

He is known to have started writing at an early age, but all of his earliest attempts were later destroyed. His first pulished work came in 1907, and he continued to publish throughout the next seventeen years, but most of his works were published posthumously by his friend Max Brod.

Visit Franz Kafka's Booktopia Author Page


ISBN: 9780749399511
ISBN-10: 0749399511
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 256
Published: 3rd January 1998
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 19.8 x 13.1  x 1.6
Weight (kg): 0.2
Edition Number: 1