Franz KafkaFranz Kafka, ; ; ; in Czech he was sometimes called František Kafka.}} (3 July 1883 – 3 June 1924) was a German-speaking Bohemian novelist and short-story writer based in Prague, who is widely regarded as one of the major figures of 20th-century literature. His work fuses elements of realism and the fantastic. It typically features isolated protagonists facing bizarre or surrealistic predicaments and incomprehensible socio-bureaucratic powers. It has been interpreted as exploring themes of alienation, existential anxiety, guilt, and absurdity. His best known works include the novella ''The Metamorphosis'' and novels ''The Trial'' and ''The Castle''. The term ''Kafkaesque'' has entered English to describe absurd situations like those depicted in his writing.
Kafka was born into a middle-class German-speaking Czech Jewish family in Prague, the capital of the Kingdom of Bohemia, then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire (today the capital of the Czech Republic). He trained as a lawyer, and after completing his legal education was employed full-time by an insurance company, forcing him to relegate writing to his spare time. Over the course of his life, Kafka wrote hundreds of letters to family and close friends, including his father, with whom he had a strained and formal relationship. He became engaged to several women but never married. He died in obscurity in 1924 at the age of 40 from tuberculosis.
Kafka was a prolific writer, spending most of his free time writing, often late in the night. He burned an estimated 90 per cent of his total work due to his persistent struggles with self-doubt. Much of the remaining 10 per cent is lost or otherwise unpublished. Few of Kafka's works were published during his lifetime: the story collections ''Contemplation'' and ''A Country Doctor'', and individual stories (such as his novella ''The Metamorphosis'') were published in literary magazines but received little public attention.
In his will, Kafka instructed his close friend and literary executor Max Brod to destroy his unfinished works, including his novels ''The Trial'', ''The Castle'', and , but Brod ignored these instructions and had much of his work published. Kafka's writings became famous in German-speaking countries after World War II, influencing their literature, and its influence spread elsewhere in the world in the 1960s. It has also influenced artists, composers, and philosophers. Provided by Wikipedia
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