Kafka Paper

“The Hunger Artist “ was first published in 1922, and it was written by Franz Kafka. This story is an artist whose art is just him sitting in a cage fasting for the audience. The artist travels all around Europe putting on these shows. His whole performance  relies on the audience.    

“The Hunger Artist “ was first published in 1922, and Franz Kafka wrote it. This story is an artist whose art is just him sitting in a cage fasting for the audience. His whole performance relies on the audience. But when the audience starts to thin out his manager puts him in a circus. The Artist investable forgotten  about in the cage and dies.  There are three key things that make the story, the fact that the artist never feels satisfied with his art so he never ate, the  fact that the artist was the only one who knew that he wasn’t really eating and why the audience kept the artist alive. This story can be read as a story with a lesson in it about art and being an artist.

The artist never felt content with his work so he never thought that he deserved to eat. This could be his innermost feeling telling him he isn’t going enough to eat, “because I couldn’t find the food I liked. If I had found it, believe me, I should have made no fuss and stuffed myself like you or anyone else” (340). This quote shows how he just couldn’t find any food that he liked. Maybe his taste buds just don’t let him enjoy food because deep down he doesn’t feel like he deserves it.

The artist is the only one who knows that he is really fasting for the whole time. The People who were watching him assume that he would try to sneak food but little did they know the artist doesn’t like food, “ only the artist himself could know that he was therefore bound to be the sole completely satisfied spectator of his own fast” (335). This quote shows how no one really knew expect the artist how long he was fasting for and his reasons why. No one could watch the artist all the time so he was the only one who knew that he really wasn’t eating anything at all.

In this story, the spectators play the most important role. This is because the artist feeds off the energy from the people. He lives off them watching and without them, he isn’t an artist. “Experience had proved that for about forty days the interest of the public could be stimulated by a steadily increasing pressure of advertisement, but after that, the town began to lose interest, sympathetic support began notably to fall off…” (335). When the people started to lose interest. It literally killed him because no one was keeping track of the days. He didn’t have a crowd so he didn’t have anything to live for.

The hungered artist couldn’t survive without a crowd watching him. Not being satisfied with himself also lead to his demise. The artist only could only really trust himself when it came to not eating. Also since no one came to see him starve himself, he didn’t have a reason to be an artist.

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