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No, not another report from Guantánamo. Ha’aretz reports that an Israeli court has cleared the way for the publication of a hitherto unknown work by the reclusive writer whose works cast such a shadow over the twentieth century.
A judge at Tel Aviv District Family Court on Tuesday rejected a request for a gag order on the contents of a box containing manuscripts written by Franz Kafka. Eva Hoffe, the Israeli woman who inherited the documents, was asked to pay court costs to the National Library and attorney Ehud Sol, the manager of the estate of Kafka’s close friend Max Brod. Judge Talia Pardo also instructed attorneys Tuesday to prepare a detailed list of the items in the safe deposit boxes to be published, which include all documents except the personal items of Esther Hoffe, Eva’s mother, who served as Brod’s secretary. Details on the other items – manuscripts by Kafka, Brod and others – will all ultimately be published.
Max Brod, who was Kafka’s executor, reported that Kafka had instructed that the materials be destroyed after his death. Brod defied the instructions, however, publishing a significant number of manuscripts, diaries, and letters. A number of important items remain unpublished, however, and a legal struggle continues over the archive, pitting the National Library in Jerusalem against the Archive of German Literature in Marbach.
More from Scott Horton:
Conversation — March 30, 2016, 3:44 pm
Joseph Hickman discusses his new book, The Burn Pits, which tells the story of thousands of U.S. soldiers who, after returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, have developed rare cancers and respiratory diseases.
Freddie Gray’s relatives arrived for the trial in the afternoon, after the prep-school kids had left. By their dress, they seemed to have just gotten off work in the medical and clerical fields. The family did not appear at ease in the courtroom. They winced and dropped their heads as William Porter and his fellow officer Zachary Novak testified to opening the doors of their police van last April and finding Freddie paralyzed, unresponsive, with mucus pooling at his mouth and nose. Four women and one man mournfully listened as the officers described needing to get gloves before they could touch him.
The first of six Baltimore police officers to be brought before the court for their treatment of Freddie Gray, a black twenty-five-year-old whose death in their custody was the immediate cause of the city’s uprising last spring, William Porter is young, black, and on trial. Here in this courtroom, in this city, in this nation, race and the future seem so intertwined as to be the same thing.
Average speed of Heinz ketchup, from the mouth of an upended bottle, in miles per year:
After studying the fall of 64,000 individual raindrops, scientists found that some small raindrops fall faster than they ought to.
The Playboy mansion in California was bought by the heir to the Twinkie fortune, and a New Mexico man set fire to his apartment to protest his neighbors’ loud lovemaking.
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“Matt was happy enough to sustain himself on the detritus of a world he saw as careening toward self-destruction, and equally happy to scam a government he despised. 'I’m glad everyone’s so wasteful,' he told me. 'It supports my lifestyle.'”