Franz Kafka an Artis Hungry for Pride

867 WordsFeb 3, 20183 Pages
In Franz Kafka’s short story, “A Hunger Artist”, Kafka introduces an eccentric man known as the Hunger Artist. The Hunger Artist has committed his entire life to the art of fasting, allowing himself to be caged and displayed to the public as if he were a painting (Kafka 198). Despite all the emotional turmoil he endures, he takes a great amount of pride in fasting and believes that he can fast for extremely elongated periods (Kafka 200). Unfortunately, his pride not only causes internal conflicts but also tragically leads to his unfortunate demise (Kafka 205). Through the setting and the character development of the Hunger Artist, Kafka illuminates the dangers of self-pride and depicts pride as harmful and detrimental to one’s existence. Kafka utilizes the setting to show how the Hunger Artist is prideful and how this pride creates nothing but self-inflicted harm. Throughout the story, the Hunger Artist is always present in the confinements of a barred cage (Kafka 198). The cage separates him from the rest of society and allows him to show that because he is locked away he cannot possibly obtain any food that can disrupt his fasting. This physical barrier shows how the Hunger Artist wants to make it obvious that there is no possible way for him to search for food. He is pleased to know that he can restrict himself from such things. Within the cage, there is little furniture and décor. Only the “striking of the clock” exists in the cage to allow the Hunger Artist a sense of

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