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Franz Kafka Quotes


A Bohemian-Jewish novelist, and was one of the major German-language fiction writers of the 20th century.
(1883 - 1924)

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A book must be the ax for the frozen sea within us.
 

A first sign of the beginning of understanding is the wish to die.
 

A man of action forced into a state of thought is unhappy until he can get out of it.
[Action]
 

A stair not worn hollow by footsteps is, regarded from its own point of view, only a boring something made of wood.
 

Always first draw fresh breath after outbursts of vanity and complacency.
 

Anyone who cannot come to terms with his life while he is alive needs one hand to ward off a little his despair over his fate... but with his other hand he can note down what he sees among the ruins.
 

Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old.
[Beauty]
 

Association with human beings lures one into self-observation.
 

Atlas was permitted the opinion that he was at liberty, if he wished, to drop the Earth and creep away; but this opinion was all that he was permitted.
 

Believing in progress does not mean believing that any progress has yet been made.
 

By believing passionately in something that still does not exist, we create it. The nonexistent is whatever we have not sufficiently desired.
 

By imposing too great a responsibility, or rather, all responsibility, on yourself, you crush yourself.
 

Don Quixote's misfortune is not his imagination, but Sancho Panza.
 

Don't despair, not even over the fact that you don't despair.
 

Dread of night. Dread of not-night.
 

Every revolution evaporates and leaves behind only the slime of a new bureaucracy.
 

Evil is whatever distracts.
 

From a certain point onward there is no longer any turning back. That is the point that must be reached.
 

God gives the nuts, but he does not crack them.
 

He who seeks does not find, but he who does not seek will be found.
 


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