Kafka in China

The author at Stone Mountain

By Ted O’Connell

It’s one thing to travel to the Russian countryside and recall some brilliant Tolstoy scene, or to duck into a flower shop in London and suddenly think of Virginia Woolf. Kitschy motels in America’s West almost always make me think of Lolita. But why on earth did Franz Kafka dominate my thoughts for the roughly two years that I lived in China? 

Kafka's Fire Gate

As an exchange professor at Beijing Foreign Studies University, I spent a lot of time moving through cold, institutional buildings. Whe...

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