Kafka and Pinter Shadow-Boxing: The Struggle between Father by Raymond Armstrong

By Raymond Armstrong

This is the 1st significant research of the extreme affinity among those heavyweights of 20th-century literature. in addition to supplying a daring new interpretation of the fight among father and son in Kafka's vintage tales The Judgement and The Metamorphosis, Armstrong seeks to evaluate and rfile the level to which Pinter have been encouraged via this Kafkaian archetype. 3 of Pinter's plays--The Homecoming, Family Voices and Moonlight --are tested intensive, the final maybe extra comprehensively than ever before.

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Additional info for Kafka and Pinter Shadow-Boxing: The Struggle between Father and Son

Example text

The fact that the portrait is given pride of place in the family home indicates that this is how the Samsas wish to remember Gregor. Yet from the insect's point of view, this illustrious avatar of his former self must now resemble a sardonic evocation of the cherubim and the fiery sword which were posted to prevent man from returning to Eden (Genesis 3:24). Perhaps the single most evocative incident in 'The Metamorphosis' is that in which Mr Samsa bombards the beetle with small red apples. The majority of these fruity missiles miss their target and roll about the floor like wayward billiard balls.

By attempting to usurp the position of paternal authority, Gregor had been following in the presumptuous footsteps of Georg Bendemann, who, not content simply to be about his father's business, had all but taken over the business himself, and even asserted his right to shut it down if he saw fit (CSS 82). Samsa pere, however, like his opposite number in 'The Judgement', did not put all his faith in the activities of his son. It emerges that Mr Samsa had prudently invested a small amount of money which had been left over from the collapse of his business.

Secondly, Kafka was not a native anglophone; and while most of Beckett's work was originally written in French, he himself translated it into his mother tongue. Nevertheless, both these 'problems' are in fact complete red herrings. Intractable only Return to a Father 39 because of their specious prominence, they represent no practical obstruction to serious inquiry. In any case, Kafka's bequest to Pinter must be appreciated not in terms of dramaturgy or linguistics, but as an essentially thematic phenomenon.

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