Sunday, November 04, 2012

A little irony

Am I the only one that got a chuckle out of this?

1924: Kafka dies. Despite his explicit instructions to burn his works, Max Brod instead publishes all of them.

1968: Max Brod dies in Israel. Despite his explicit instructions to donate Kafka's work, his secretary Esther Hoffe instead kept the collection.

2007: Esther Hoffe dies. Her daughters inherit the Kafka collection.

2012: Israeli court orders Hoffe family to hand over the collection to the National Library of Israel, "after establishing that that was the original intent of Kafka's friend."

So here's the question: if original intent is the primary determinant... why does Brod's intent matter more than Kafka's? Other of course, then the fact that Israel wants the Kafka collection.

Too bad there are no more Kafkas left. I would have rather seen it go to one of them than posthumously rewarding Brod for ignoring his friend's last wishes.

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