Kafka’s In The Penal Colony

If ever there was a mind that captured the modern condition (our current condition) it is Franz Kafka. Not only that, he must rate as the preeminent novelist of ideas without them being the ideas of the learned man trotted out self-consciously by most (academics and literati) who would be flattered by that appellation. First published in October 1919 here is Kafka’s In the Penal Colony. Since this was the only Kafka piece that I felt could be translated to the screen, years back I wrote a screenplay that faithfully followed this text. Though it never made it to the screen I can see it in my mind eye unmodulated by others’ vision.