Each group should post 2 of its keywords/passages/explanations in the comments. In your comment, please note your group number and please cite the page number for your chosen passage.

Group 1: George, Aysha, Alex, Margarita, Amber

Group 2: Paul, Lewis, Yvonne, Minerva, Lovinia

Group 3: Ben, Kemar, Ros, Helen

Group 4: Denise, Marie, Andy, Olivia, Ayanna

Group 5: Ameer, Henry, Thelma, Jessica

You can copy passages from Billy Budd from this online version of the text. Please mark of the quotation from your own writing by using quotation marks or some other mark.


Billy Budd
Keyword: Innocence
Billy Budd passage
Explanation of relation of keyword to passage.


Hi Everyone,

Just a reminder that I have placed the Guide to Using Quotations on our course wiki. Please check it out and print it out from there.

If you have questions about grammar, usage, or format, please check out the OWL at Purdue, a wonderful writing resource.

If you have any other questions as you work on your papers, please leave them in the comments to this post.

Hi Everyone,

I’m providing you with a link to a critical article that I hope will be of use to you as you seek to build your own interpretations of Kafka’s The Trial though the writing assignment I have given you. We will discuss this article, along with the assignment itself, on Monday.

The article is a review essay of several Kafka translations, so you don’t need to read the whole thing. But the article provides a great deal of biographical and historical background that you should find useful as you write your paper. Feel free to quote from it and respond to it in your paper, as long as you cite your source correctly.

Follow this link to download the article (PDF).

I’m going to do a separate post on MLA format. Coming soon.

Snow Job


I know that some of you were unable to make it to class on Monday due to the snow. If you missed class, please check out the class notes for the day on the wiki, as we wound up having a wonderful discussion that moved from Foucault’s conception of spectacle as it relates to discipline and punishment towards the tension between conformity and resistance in Kafka’s novel.

For Wednesday, you should have finished The Trial. Before class tomorrow, I’m likely to post a critical essay or two here on the blog. You won’t be responsible for using those essays in your paper, but we will discuss them in class and they might help you better grapple with Kafka’s novel.

As always, please feel free to respond here in the comment section.

Franz Kafka, The Trial (up to page 167 – up to “Block, the Merchant, Dismissal of the Lawyer”)

Choose one of the following words:


Choose a short quotation from Monday’s reading assignment that illustrates some aspect of your chosen word. Write a paragraph that explains how your passage helps illustrate your chosen word.

If you have any questions about this assignment, please leave a comment on this post.

Kafka’s text Wordle:
Project Gutenberg text version

Wordle: Kafka, The Trial

Critical Article Wordle:
Scott Finet, “Franz Kafka’s Trial as Symbol in Judicial Opinions

Wordle: Kafka - Trial - article

Next Wednesday, we’ll begin to discuss Franz Kafka’s The Trial. By Wednesday, you should have read the Publisher’s Note (xii-xiv) and up to page 88 of the novel.

I will begin to add links to resources on Kafka and this novel on our course wiki. Please feel free to join me in building up the list.

Update: Here is a direct link to the Kafka page on our wiki.