The bookshelves held the usual Kafka, the obligatory Borges, the point-scoring Musil.
[We try to discover in things, endeared to us on that account, the spiritual glamour which we ourselves have cast upon them; we are disillusioned, and learn that they are in themselves barren and devoid of the charm which they owed, in our minds, to the association of certain ideas; sometimes we mobilise all our spiritual forces in a glittering array so as to influence and subjugate other human beings who, as we very well know, are situated outside ourselves, where we can never reach them. On cherche à retrouver dans les choses, devenues par là précieuses, le reflet que notre âme a projeté sur elles; on est déçu en constatant qu’elles semblent dépourvues dans la nature, du charme qu’elles devaient, dans notre pensée, au voisinage de certaines idées; parfois on convertit toutes les forces de cette âme en habileté, en splendeur pour agir sur des êtres dont nous sentons bien qu’ils sont situés en dehors de nous et que nous ne les atteindrons jamais.]
M. Proust – Swann’s Way
I put that in brackets as I had to contain these thoughts in something. Every chapter on Proust’s novel is what he found inside, in his head, in his very own associations. You can see how deep he descended as he mourned that people really differ from how we imagine them. He only dreamed of ‘mentally eating’ everyone, taking everything in, dismantling all the phisical outlines. He was a romantic genius yearning for the power to play with the world as if it was clay. Or his imagined clay, even more flexible.
You might even say that he had an obssesion of doing what only the time itself was able to do; that is to effortlessly reshape all things on earth, from tiniest grains of sand to the highest, never unfrozen mountains.
read on —->
He was always inclined to take life as lightly as he could, to cross bridges when he came to them, pay no heed for the future, even when everything seemed under threat.
Er neigte stets dazu, alles möglichst leicht zu nehmen, das Schlimmste erst beim Eintritt des Schlimmsten zu glauben, keine Vorsorge für die Zukunft zu treffen, selbst wenn alles drohte.
Il avait toujours tendance à prendre les choses légèrement, à ne croire au pire que quand il arrivait et à ne pas s’armer de précautions pour l’avenir, même alors que tout menaçait ;
“You’re the prison chaplain,” said K., (…)
“So that means I belong to the court,” said the priest. “So why would I want anything from you? the court doesn’t want anything from you. It accepts you when you come and it lets you go when you leave.”
I am. Yet, as a person, he isn’t a figure that brings fear into senses. But his life and his works are a whole different story. The thing I’m afraid of is the possibility that he is right. Kafka speaks about his life and his attitude towards literature and art in general, through his novels. If he got close to the truth then the hope for some of us is lost, for those who somewhat resemble Kafka, that is for those who aim at dwelling in the world of art. Let me get to the point. I’ll consider the Metamorphosis and The Trial in this short text.
<read on ->
That’s when he told us incredible stories about the Russian Revolution. For example, on a business trip in Kiev during a riot he saw a priest on a balcony who cut a wide bloody cross into the palm of his hand, raised his hand, and appealed to the mob.
“Who is your lawyer?”
“You are, sir,” said Block.
“And who besides me?” the lawyer asked.
“No-one besides you, sir,” said Block.
“And let there be no-one besides me,” said the lawyer.
As this blog is supposed to be mainly about literature and becouse calendar says it’s the 8th of march I’d like to remind you of some female figures that I’d met along the way in the imaginary world, the one between the covers. <read on>