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Thread: Kafkaesque

  1. #1
    Registered User EmptySeraph's Avatar
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    Kafkaesque

    Hello!

    Lately I've taken a fancy to this literary, fictional set-up: dimly lit offices, dusty desks, old and yellowed papers, tore envelopes, spilled ink, neuralgia, a vague but indelibly present sense of being lost, of not recognising oneself, of feeling captured and unable to escape, petty clerks, a conspicuous and perpetual inability to communicate accordingly, to make oneself understood, to interact with the others, of articulating reliable bonds, an insurmontable perplexity when confronted with one's existence, the consciousness tormented by the idea of salvation, labyrinths, tests, sadistic experiments, the evidence of one's insignificance and the impotence of changing one's suchness, financial problems, cheap hotels, angst, ennui, weltschmerz, subtle misanthropy, alleged antinatalism, characters left aghast before any act pertaining of the external word, the revelation of the absurd...

    Kafka, Gogol, Beckett, Dostoievski (in his earlier period), Hamsun, Rilke (in his sole novel), Jens Peter, Jacobsen (in Niels Lyhne), Thomas Bernhard, Sartre, Camus often included these details in their works.

    Any other suggestion of kafkaesque authors or books?
    Et ignotas animum dimittit in artes.

  2. #2
    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
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    I just remembered a Brazilian short story author that fits your request: Murilo Rubião.

    https://www.amazon.com/Ex-Magician-O.../dp/0060137088

    About Murilo Rubião:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murilo_Rubião
    "You can always find something better than death."
    Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, The Bremen Town Musicians

  3. #3
    Registered User EmptySeraph's Avatar
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    Dino Buzzati with "The Tartar Steppe", Ernesto Sabato with his "The Tunnel" and Stefan Zweig and Arthur Schnitzler with their entire œuvres are all to be reminded in the branch of kafkaesque.
    Et ignotas animum dimittit in artes.

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    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
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    Wenn I see your lists ES, I get the strong impression that all you want is writers of the old style,who existed more or less until the middle of 20C, which made an art out of the use of language.

    It seems this art got lost in the age of internet, when publishing got so easy, that every one can post what he wants, mistakes and all.
    "You can always find something better than death."
    Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, The Bremen Town Musicians

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    Kurt Vonnegut Jr. is right up your alley. So are a lot of the late 30's-40's film noir movies.

  6. #6
    Registered User EmptySeraph's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Danik 2016 View Post
    Wenn I see your lists ES, I get the strong impression that all you want is writers of the old style,who existed more or less until the middle of 20C, which made an art out of the use of language.

    It seems this art got lost in the age of internet, when publishing got so easy, that every one can post what he wants, mistakes and all.
    You are indeed right. That's mainly because I think of literature exclusively in terms of absolute art. I think, alongside that madman Wilde, and opposing Tolstoy (whom, however, I hold to be a great artist) that art is quite useless. Art is not meant to teach, it's not meant to change, it's not meant to mingle with the elements, it's not meant to adopt any of the elements' characteristics, it's not meant to have a purpose, it's not meant to be important outside art. Art just has to be beautiful. Now, for that specific beauty understood as constituent part of art, the creator must work ceaselessly, and what's of an even greater importance is that the artist labors towards seeings his art's completion and accomplishment without giving any importance to what pertains intrinsically to the exterior, profoundly non-artistic world. We could say that the macrocosm is the artist's greatest enemy in his undertaking to create. As for what an artist chooses to create, this is of secondary importance compared to how he saw fit to transpose into palpable reality his idealistic views. Above all, an artist must act as he is working on something of utmost importance, as he is indeed recreating the world, as he is nothing less than God. Thus, under the urgency of risking to give birth to another botched creation, the artist must apply himself in order to make use of his best efforts. A book cannot be written just like that, like a letter sent to a clandestine lover or a wretched remark in a private journal. No. A book must look as if it has suffered the implication of some deity, as if it has been written not for this world, nor for any other conceivable world at all, but for the act of writing itself, thus availing itself of all the existing devices for creating a piece of art that dwells beyond the realm of the actual devices of creation. In this sense, the writer must also be a destroyer, one that obliterates all the worlds that have preceded his work and reduces to lamentable prostrate universes all forms of life that have thrived before his advent. This is why a supreme work of art must be consigned to look only towards its interior spaces. Because it cares nothing for what happens outside the walls of its sphere of pure existence. A pure form of art must be protected against the exterior world, against its predilection to poison everything with its universal utilitarianism. Pure art must not be contaminated with the real world, where the real world means the world that functions in spite of art. For truly, when a true artist designs a new world, that very precise world replaces the old world to whose detriment it has been created, even if this also means the destruction of the artist as he was before committing to his creation. We could assess the value and genuineness of a piece of art by discerning within it a desire to do away with everything that is not itself, a desire to be both the first and the last voice. Absolute writing is the refutation of everything that has been created with the idea of symbiosis in mind, the refutation of anything that has been conceived with ignorance to the absolute terms, the refutation of that which has been brought into existence without the monolithic belief of its being able to be a new everything.

    This is why I admire Shakespeare, Milton, Robert Burton, Sir Thomas Browne, Jonathan Swift, Laurence Sterne, Alexander Pope, Herman Melville, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Dickens, Joyce, Woolf, Beckett, Nabokov and many others that can fit this branch. Because for them the style was anything. Because they paid attention to the very last minute detail. Because they fancied the opportunity to replace God.

    And this is also why I abhor anything that partakes of the facile, superficial, shallow, frothy, ephemeral, vulgar, accessible, open, popular, comfortable, fast and, ultimately, inconceivably chthonian, excruciatingly devoid of any ambition to accede to the absolute by creating the absolute, irretrievably doomed to be nothing more than a relaxing read, one meant not to push the brain into ebullition, but rather to freeze it into an abyss of infinite mediocrity.
    Last edited by EmptySeraph; 05-18-2017 at 08:11 PM.
    Et ignotas animum dimittit in artes.

  7. #7
    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
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    I agree with you on the importance of a perfect and beautiful artistic form but I don´t think art is useless. Good art brings joy and art is also, whether we like it or not a merchandise.

    And I also think that art is a particular expression of the outer world and it´s tensions. That is even true for the "art for the sake of art" movement. What would be of Joyce, without Irish history, Irish believes and contradictions, Irish traditions and the Irish way of life?Would Kafka have written as he did if he had felt at home in his country and in his family? To my mind good art is not an empty form. To achieve universality the work of art must paradoxically reflect it´s time and it´s place in an unique way.
    "You can always find something better than death."
    Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, The Bremen Town Musicians

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