Parable and Context

Can anything be always already taken out of context? Taken out of context at all? The answer should be no. But that is apparently the claim of the parable - that is can be taken out of context. Or is that just a left-over new critical stance? Kafka's parables should be a new critic's wet dream. They are. But they also reference an absent context - a reference that makes a straight "just the text" reading insufficient - an absence that makes it the only criticism that gives Kafka his due as trying to write something metaphysically important. Kafka's parable is a litmus test for the critic - are you a modernist or a postmodernist?




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