Franz Kafka: Brief an den Vater [Letter to my Father]

(1050 words)

Franz Kafka (1883-1924) wrote his famous, seventy printed pages long Brief an den Vater [1960, Letter to his Father, 1966] in 1919 at the age of 36 when he was at the zenith of his literary career and already in the early stage of tuberculosis. He neither sent the letter-essay to his father, Hermann Kafka (1852–1931), nor was it published during his lifetime. According to his friend, Max Brod (1884-1968), he gave it to his mother, who did not deliver it, and later entrusted it to his confidante, Milena Jesenská (1896-1944). Kafka's narrative reveals that the immediate motive for writing the letter was the father's disapproval of Kafka's second fiancée, Julie Wohryzek (1891-1944), because of …

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Lorenz, Dagmar C. G.. "Brief an den Vater". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 30 October 2008
[, accessed 27 November 2015.]