Kafka commented about Prague that: "The little mother has claws." He was no fan of the city and spent years of his life desiring to get away. Which he finally did, but only for the last year he lived. That can probably be classed as not a successful conclusion to a quest. However, Kafka knew Prague well, and Prague shaped him into the writer he became.
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Prague's priceless past
By TANYA POWELL-JONE
With a long history dating back over 1,000 years, Prague’s Jewish Quarter contains some hidden treasures.
PHOTO: YAAKOV LAPPIN
The Jewish history of Prague can be found all over the city. From the Jewish Quarter, a former ghetto, to literary legends that have left a lasting legacy. Adding to the city’s overall charm is the option to taste some of the Jewish eastern European delicacies that have stood the test of time.
Prague's Jewish Quarter is a place of new and old, magic and progress. Here is where the mystical Golem was born and where the soul of Franz Kafka remains. Included into Prague in 1850, the Quarter was home to the biggest Jewish community in Europe.
The Quarter’s past has been the subject of various films, the most recent of which is Nicky’s Family. Set at the beginning of the German invasion, this inspirational film, which won the Audience Award at the Karlovy Vary Film Festival 2011, follows the story of the rescue of 669 Czechoslovakian children, most of whom were Jewish.
... After lunch, follow in the footsteps of one of the most famous writers of the 20th Century, Franz Kafka. During the 20th century there were a number of German-Jewish authors who were known as the “Prague circle” such as writer and critic Max Brod who coined the term, the blind poet Oskar Baum and Bohemian writer Hermann Ungar. Yet Kafka was the only one to emerge from this circle to achieve international recognition.
To see where it all began for Kafka, start by visiting his birthplace. At the site, on the corner of U Radnice and Maiselova, there is a life-sized bust of him in black bronze by Jaroslav Róna. Next door there’s a little museum dedicated to all things Kafka. ...