Kafka’s Relatives: Their Lives and His Writings

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9780300045857: Kafka’s Relatives: Their Lives and His Writings

Kafka's extended family, or "Mischpoche," often inspired his creative writings. In this work of literary detection, Anthony Northey traces the background of the Kafka clan. The information he provides shows Kafka's family origins in a clearer light, points out unexpected connections between the lives of Kafka's relatives and his fiction, and offers a fuller picture of social and commercial activities during the Belle Epoque. For 15 years, Northey has pursued elusive clues and researched obscure archives, local newspapers, passenger lists, and industry reports from many countries to recreate the history of the Kafka family. He relates, for example, how one of Kafka's uncles, Joseph Loewy, emigrated to France, spent 12 years in the Belgian Congo administering the construction of a railway, visited China and Canada, returned to France, and finally settled in Switzerland. Similar exploits of other family members who included successful lawyers and businessmen as well as the prominent academician and politician Bruno Kafka are told. Northey shows how the exploits of Kafka's relatives provided the nuclei of major and minor writings, expecially the novel "Der Verschollene" (known in English as "Amerika"). He also explores how Kafka's success-oriented relatives affected his sense of self.

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Language Notes:

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: German

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Northey, Anthony
Published by Yale University Press (1991)
ISBN 10: 0300045859 ISBN 13: 9780300045857
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Anthony Northey
Published by Yale University Press (1991)
ISBN 10: 0300045859 ISBN 13: 9780300045857
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