K. as "confessional hero" : a Foucauldian reading of Kafka's Der Prozeß
Institute of Jewish Studies
Arcadia : internationale Zeitschrift für literarische Kultur. - Berlin
, p. 99-120
University of Antwerp
Despite the existence of a Foucauldian research tradition in Kafka scholarship, its central tenets (power, subjectivity, and space) have seldom been brought together in readings of Kafka's The Trial. This article proposes to read Kafka's novel as a coherent reflection on the nature of disciplinary power in modern society, whose hero, K., can be regarded as a confessional animal engaging in the most elaborate acts of self-examination. This confesssional subjectivity is analyzed in relation to the nature of power visible in the novel and its specific spatial constellations. Each of these is explored at the intersection between the Foucauldian theory of disciplinary power and the notion of a society of global control developed more recently, particularly by Gilles Deleuze.