Freitag, 29. Dezember 2017

The Unlikely Kinship of “Bambi” and Kafka’s “Metamorphosis” / Paul Reitter

Before there was “Maus,” there were the “Mouse Folk.” Or, more precisely, fifty-six years before Art Spiegelman drew Jews as mice in his family memoir, Franz Kafka played with the associations between Jews and mice in the last story he wrote, “Josephine, the Singer, or the Mouse Folk,” which was published in 1924. The “mouse folk” live with danger and enemies close by, much like the Jews of Central Europe did then. As the brilliant Kafka scholar Heinz Politzer noted, the character of Josephine, with her unique manner of singing, seems to evoke Karl Kraus, the Jewish writer and performer who had, in Kafka’s opinion, a special way with German-Jewish dialect. (“No one can speak Mauscheln like Kraus,” he wrote to a friend.) ... [mehr]

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