The Trial


The Trial

LET us go then, you and I,
When the evening is spread out against the sky
Like a patient etherized upon a table;
Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,
The muttering retreats 5
Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells:
Streets that follow like a tedious argument
Of insidious intent
To lead you to an overwhelming question…. 10
Oh, do not ask, “What is it?”
Let us go and make our visit.

Project 3

Ladies, Gentlemen, and Hijos:
For Project 3, we will be taking part of the grade from the oral PPT presentations of the Project 2 fairy tales/tall tales. The other part will be a 3-4 page paper on your interpretation of Kafka’s Before the Law parable that occurs within his 1925 novel, The Trial.
This is not an easy assignment. In fact, it is your most difficult assignment all term. If the assignment was simply to write about the parable, you could go grab something off the Internet, put it in your own words, and bam, be down at The Padre in time for Happy Hour. But that is not the way the Lord intended.
Instead this is your question:
In Kafka’s Trial, Joseph K. has a parable recounted to him by a priest. The story, The Parable of the Doorkeeper, is about a man who comes to the courts seeking justice and waits outside a door to the chambers of justice his whole life believing the law is equitable if he is willing to be patient just a little longer, and to believe the law ultimately will be meted out fairly.
In the bible, there is a parable with almost the identical name, but with a slightly different story line. It is called the Parable of the Watchful Doorkeeper, sometimes also called the Faithful Servant (Matthew 24:42–Watch!).
Many critics have spake (yes, correct; yes, archaic) that the two literary pieces are unrelated. I am not so sure. So unsure, or rather sure, that I must defer to Prufrock and Eliot before I go on with your assignment

And would it have been worth it, after all,
After the cups, the marmalade, the tea,
Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me,
Would it have been worth while, 90
To have bitten off the matter with a smile,
To have squeezed the universe into a ball
To roll it toward some overwhelming question,
To say: “I am Lazarus, come from the dead,
Come back to tell you all, I shall tell you all”— 95
If one, settling a pillow by her head,
Should say: “That is not what I meant at all;
That is not it, at all.”
So since I am not sure at all, I leave it to you to answer the overwhelming question, “What is it?”
What does each piece mean? Analyze please, on as many levels as it takes to make your argument. Was Kafka mindful of the biblical piece? Nodding to it? Curling a lip at it? Shaking his head at a God that had abandoned the world? Completely not referring to the biblical piece, at all. You tell me.Are the two pieces related in a way that can be compared? Is Kafka’s piece referential? In what way? In what way are these two pieces linked, or not linked? 3-4 pages. Place in the front of your binder on the left hand side. This is the first piece I will see when I open your binder.

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