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Modernism and Franz Kafka's Before the Law - Essay Example

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A brief critical evaluation of Kafka’s “Before the Law” to examine the presence or absence of the essential qualities of modernism is the focus of this paper. Modernists tried to depict abstractions and fantasies, instead of reproducing what is real. …
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Modernism and Franz Kafkas Before the Law
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"Modernism and Franz Kafka's Before the Law"

Download file to see previous pages The paper "Modernism and Franz Kafka's Before the Law" discovers Kafka’s “Before the Law” in the context of modernism. Anything which is old is rejected and whatever is modern is welcome in modernism. In Kafka’s writings too such frustration captures the central place. It is in this light “Before the Law” should be viewed. The most striking quality of modernism is in its stress on form, rather than on content. Many novelists belonging to this movement carried out experiments with the art of writing, particularly with the narrative techniques. Joyce and Virginia Wolf are fine examples of this. However, Kafka does not reject the conventional style altogether. Plot is a strong element in “Before”, as it is a parable, an allegory. Some of the modernist writers upset the depiction of chronological events, and they play with the movement of time too. In the story under scrutiny here, “the man from the country” ages, as weeks, months, and years move, though he is still waiting for the gate to be opened. At the end he asks, “so how is that in these many years no one except me has requested entry”. At the same time, he is not a hero in the conventional sense. He is the personification of a permanent desire. The desire and the denial of it make the plot. Modernists normally do not look for moral points or meaning, which are integral to the content. In Kafka’s case, the peripheral story is simple, and for meaning the reader has to go beyond the plot, using his own level of knowledge. The meaning is important. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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