Kafka’s The Castle: God’s Nightmare Bureaucracy

Geoff Klock at Strong Rope Brewery

Tue, Nov 12 at 7:30 p.m.   |   90 minutes

Join Geoff Klock at Strongrope brewery as we explore the comic absurdity and terror of Kafka's 'The Castle'.

​Three things to know about Kafka. First his friend asked him if he believed in a spiritual world, and Kafka replied that he thought there was only one world, and then added that the one world he was thinking of WAS the spiritual world — the physical world, he said, was the Evil in the spiritual world. The other thing to know about Kafka is that when he read his stories people roared with laughter — we have lost the COMIC absurdity of his stuff. Third, David Lynch’s character in Twin Peaks has two pictures on his office wall: Kafka and a nuclear bomb going off. Let’s get a handle on the guy who Harold Bloom said, alongside Proust and Freud, dominated the 20th century.

​This is the story of a land surveyor who comes to work in a village with a castle and oh my god you guys he never does get to that castle and it actually might not be a castle at all. It’s a terrifying book about GOD, or at least some structure god has long abandoned. It’s also about the deep insanity of bureaucracy. Also weirdly Michael Haneke, who did Funny Games, made a movie about The Castle in 1997?

Teacher: Geoff Klock

Geoff Klock has a doctorate from Oxford and is a professor at BMCC-CUNY. He teaches philosophy (mostly the philosophy of art), Shakespeare, canonical poetry in English, parables, and film (mostly movies about movies, and David Lynch). He is the author of four academic books on things like television shows and superheroes and has been cited 290 times.


Venue: Strong Rope Brewery

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Olio: A miscellaneous collection of art and literature.