Analysis of Kafka’s Castle

Kafka is one of the puzzling and enigmatic writers of the 20th century. He was a Jew in exile bearing the birth pain of an existential dilemma and angst of what makes up individuality. His fiction is marked by extreme romantic irony. In Kafka we find the stirrings of existential philosophy. Kafka had a negative attitude to life. His novels are marked by an oedipal trauma and his own conflict with authoritarian father.
In the castle: we find the dialogue in first person of individual K. K is entrusted with the job of surveying the castle. K arrives at the village and stays in an inn. He interacts with people from all walks of life. The castle is apparently an unfinished fragment. The life of the fictional character is one marked by extreme irony. Kafka brings through his fiction an eclectic synthesis of a literary pathos. His fiction is strange like a cross word puzzle. The landlord of the castle is extremely autocratic and authoritarian.
K’s life is marked by nausea and angst. His soul does not stir in cosmic delight. He embarks upon his work with diligence. There is a poignant portrayal of psychological insight and depth. K encounters a catharsis of mystery.
Philosophically speaking Kafka’s novel—the Castle adumbrates an ethos of aesthetics. The novel castle is set up on theme of the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Kafka’s existential search for the meaning of life is akin to Don Quixote. Life leaves him in the lurch. Kafka is endowed with the passion of writing. Kafka was always in conflict with Jewish and Christian thought. There is rich tapestry of words and thoughts in the Castle. The Castle as a fictional work is strange and mystic and it does not leave the moorings of a story. The Landlord is an internalized projection of the alter ego of his father. The blustering image of his father haunts Kafka. Kafka is a feeble minded individual. Kafka is confronted by the magnitude of existential guilt. In the novel K is a character caught up in decadent monarchy with its outdated petite bourgeoisie living a tormented life? Kafka’s work is not an aesthetic master piece but littered with allusions and ambiguity. The intention of K as a character is not very legible. What does K intend to do? Why is life of K so demeaning? These remain a mystery. Perhaps if someone encounters Kafka through a séance we might get answers to these questions. Kafka’s intellect is so acute and so sensitive. Kafka through the character K questions the meaning of life. One can’t appraise Kafka’s work to be a literary master piece.

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