Readers' Club Live: Kafka!
A man wakes up as an enormous insect, a circus artist fasts until death, a hangman demonstrates a new torture machine, a son has his father sentence him to death by drowning.
The stories of Franz Kafka (1883-1924) are often absurd, but they are presented with the highest degree of realism and in a simple style. Kafka's tragicomic main characters, laden with a guilt feeling based on nothing, try to make the best of the nightmare that life is.
In NRC's Reaers' Club Live columnists and editors of the NRC book pages Elsbeth Etty and Bas Heijne discuss with each other, writer/lawyer Naema Tahir and the audience The Metamorphosis and Other Stories, the new Kafka translation by Willem van Toorn. Host is chief editor of NRC's book pages, Pieter Steinz.
Over the years Kafka's work has been read as a quest for God, a satire on eastern European bureaucracy, an allegory on the human condition and a symbolic autobiography. Kafka serves all sorts of purposes, and exactly that makes him such a suitable subject for the fifth edition of the successful Readers' Club Live at Winternachten.