8Developing Our Creativity

‘Enclosed in my own four walls, I found myself as an immigrant imprisoned in a foreign country … I saw my family as strange aliens whose foreign customs, rites and very language defied comprehension … though I did not want it, they forced me to participate in their bizarre rituals.’

Franz Kafka (1883–1924) was born to German-speaking Jewish parents in Prague – at the time a Czech-speaking outpost of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. His parents were ambitious fancy-goods retailers and rather proud of their status within both the Jewish community and the upper echelons of Prague society. The young Kafka, meanwhile, felt alienated from both his parents' heritage – as the diary entry above attests – and by his minority ...

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