Kafka on Books

Franz Kafka on books:

I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound and stab us. If the book we are reading doesn’t wake us up with a blow on the head, what are we reading it for? …we need the books that affect us like a disaster, that grieve us deeply, like the death of someone we loved more than ourselves, like being banished into forests far from everyone, like a suicide. A book must be the axe for the frozen sea inside us.

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Kafka on Books

  1. Libby

    Cormac McCarthy’s “The Road” definitely fits this description. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Road

  2. I think what Kafka was trying to get at was more along the lines of an ontical distructivness. “The Road” doesn’t give us an foudational revelations. All of McCarthy’s revelations are about the dynamisof relationships between people. The soul as acting on itself is something hidden from his literary sight.

    That said, he’s still a fine writer, but only in the same way that bricklayer can be a fine bricklayer.

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