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Kafka-ish: Kafka @Finborough

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In offering proof that Kafka is everything to everyone - writer-performer Jack Klaff plays various roles, including the man himself in what is a part tour, part immersion and part legend of Franz Kafka. He is a writer who achieved fame after his life was cut short due to succumbing to tuberculosis at the age of forty. He is probably better known for his reputation and the Kafkaesque style attributed to his writing than his life. But after this piece, you’re left curious to learn more about the man and his works. And that has to be the best theatrical tribute you could give a writer, even for a writer who stipulated that his works be destroyed upon his death. It’s currently playing at the Finborough Theatre . Franz Kafka was born in Prague in 1883. In 1901, he was admitted to a university and began studying law. While studying, he met Max Brod, who would become his best friend and eventual literary executor. Brod would posthumously publish many of his works and writings. Kafka’s life co

Arguments: Britain is Indifferent to Beauty

Destined to be great fodder for the Sunday papers (and it was in both The Times and The Guardian today), I found myself at a debate on Thursday evening on the topic that Britain has become indifferent to beauty. It was a lively and entertaining debate with TV Historian pop star David Starkey and Roger Scruton arguing for the case, and Germaine Greer and Stephen Bayley against. Greer and Bayley won the debate, and not necessarily on the strengths of their arguments, but probably because Starkey and Scruton came across as fussy old men. A pity really as not only did Greer and Bayley contradict themselves, there was an emerging argument that our busy hectic lives has bumped the pursuit of beauty (in terms of the environment in which we live), down the order of priorities. Starkey and Scruton started to touch upon this, but they lost it amongst their stuffiness. Still it is delightful to hear them all speak, especially Greer. She takes a contrary view so easily that you wouldn't w