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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 A number of important items remain unpublished, however, and a legal struggle continues over the archive, pitting the National Library in Jerusalem against the Archive of German Literature in Marbach.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 — August 5, 2016, 12:08 pm
Sidney Blumenthal on the origins of the Republican Party, the fallout from Clinton’s emails, and his new biography of Abraham Lincoln
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.
Chances that a Soviet woman’s first pregnancy will end in abortion:
Peaceful fungus-farming ants are sometimes protected against nomadic raider ants by sedentary invader ants.
In San Antonio, a 150-pound pet tortoise knocked over a lamp, igniting a mattress fire that spread to a neighbor’s home.
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"It is an interesting and somewhat macabre parlor game to play at a large gathering of one’s acquaintances: to speculate who in a showdown would go Nazi. By now, I think I know. I have gone through the experience many times—in Germany, in Austria, and in France. I have come to know the types: the born Nazis, the Nazis whom democracy itself has created, the certain-to-be fellow-travelers. And I also know those who never, under any conceivable circumstances, would become Nazis."