Monday, August 11, 2008

There Are Prudes And There Are Prudes

Ooh, look at me! I found Kafka's stash of porn! "Academics have pretended it did not exist.... The Kafka industry doesn’t want to know such things about its idol." They're all sure gonna be shocked now! Porny porn porn! My "book seeks to explode important myths surrounding the literary icon, a 'quasi-saintly' image which hardly fits with the dark and shocking pictures contained in these banned journals." Not a saint? Nobody's ever thought of THIS before! I'll show them all!

And can you believe Kafka kept it at his parents' house! Under lock and key! And Franz's dad Hermann wasn't such a bad guy. He hardly hit him at all. Why's Franzie so sensitive about it? It's almost like he's psychologically disposed to key in to the hidden cruelty of small slights and humiliations, and spatial constrictions with the ever-present threat of physical force. I bet he never really turned into a monstrous vermin either. Except when he was reading that stash of porn.

Oh, those horrible prudes all venerating their saintly idol! How I hate them all! Just look at how enlightened and mature I am for talking about this really vile, contemptuous, and really kind of ugggghhhh stuff in this archive. "These are not naughty postcards from the beach. They are undoubtedly porn, pure and simple. Some of it is quite dark, with animals committing fellatio and girl-on-girl action... It's quite unpleasant."


Look, I don't know what's in those ellipses that the TLS wouldn't print. Maybe there's something in there that's really truly shocking. But "girl-on-girl action... It's quite unpleasant"? How old are you? Have you actually read any other modernist literature? I mean Bataille, Genet, Joyce or Henry Miller even? Have you ever read Sade? Have you ever, I don't know, read pornography that wasn't a softcore Harlequin romance?

What a joke. Unless you're going to put the whole series of the porn Kafka subscribed to into print, stop wasting my time.

1 comment:

Gavin said...

So let me get this straight—this is porn that Kafka purchased and kept, not pornographic stories that he wrote or drawings that he made?

Unless I can get a copy for personal use, I just don't care. Kafka had dark off-the-beaten path tastes? Whoever would have guessed?

I mean, I don't see any point in deny its existence, but what does this stash add to our understanding of Kafaka?