“Justice consists not in being neutral between right and wrong, but finding out the right and upholding it, wherever found, against the wrong.”


The Trial is a novel that has been written by Franz Kafka in the year of 1914 but it didn’t publish until 1925 and it was published after his death.

“Justice consists not in being neutral between right and wrong, but finding out the right and upholding it, wherever found, against the wrong.”

~ Theodore Roosevelt

The Trial is based upon the functioning of the judiciary in modern times as we know that writers belong to their era, most of the time tend to write what they observe and notice whatever happens around them. Thus, portraying that in certain specific ways and that is known as their style of writing.

So, the genre of this novel is Legal and Judicial functioning and it explains how your connections with the court or judicial officers decide the verdict of your case in modern time.

The Trial is the terrifying tale of Josef K., a respectable bank officer who is suddenly and inexplicably arrested and must defend himself against a charge about which he can get no information. Whether read as an existential tale, a parable, or a prophecy of the excesses of modern bureaucracy wedded to the madness of totalitarianism, The Trial has resonated with chilling truth for generations of readers.

About the author

One of the twentieth century’s great fiction author, Franz Kafka. He was born in Prague in Bohemia (currently the Czech Republic) and Austria–Hungary into a middle-class German-speaking Jewry family. His unique body of writing — much of which is incomplete and which was mainly published posthumously — is considered to be among the most influential in Western literature.

His stories include “The Metamorphosis” (1912) and “In the Penal Colony” (1914), while his novels are The Trial (1925), The Castle (1926) and Amerika (1927).

Kafka’s first language was German, but he was also fluent in Czech. Later, Kafka acquired some knowledge of the French language and culture; one of his favourite authors was Flaubert.

Main characters of The Trial by Franz-Kafka

Joseph K – He is the main hero and protagonist of the novel. He is working as a clerk in a leading bank. He has been portrayed as an ambitious shrewd and playboy in this novel. At times he looks quite arrogant in the story as he didn’t pay any heed to the advice of others additionally, he is a bit stubborn too. he is on the fast track to success until he is arrested one morning for no reason. There begins his slide into desperation as he tries to grapple with an all-powerful Court and an invisible La There begins his slide into desperation as he tries to grapple with an all-powerful Court and an invisible Law.

Fraulein Burner – A boarder in the same house as Joseph K. She allows him to kiss her one night but then refuses his advancement. She reappears briefly on the final pages of her book.

Uncle Karl – K.’s country’s impetuous uncle, his guardian formerly. Karl’s insisting on K. The lawyer, hire Huld.

Huld, The Lawyer- K.’s fustian champion who gives very little in the way of anecdotes and much too much.

Leni-Herr Huld’s wife, Joseph K is on the gas. She’s becoming his lover soon. She seems very appealing for the accused men, the fact that they are charged with her is irresistible.

Block, The Tradesman- Block is a second accused man and Huld’s lawyer. He is only a shadow of a prosperous man he once was, and he is 5 years old. His case is now committed to all his time, energy and resources. He has hired hack attorneys on his side, but he is totally and pathetically subordinate to Huld.

Torelli, The Painter – The position of Court Painter was inherited by his father by Torelli. He knows a lot about the future and backward moves of the Court. He offers K. to help and succeeds in unloading the accused man with many similar scene paintings. If the novel had been completed, Titorelli may have learned more.

Plot overview

Joseph K is an energetic, worldly young bank official. “One fine morning” is arrested by two warders, though he didn’t do anything wrong. K. He’s outrageous and upset. The morning is the thirtieth anniversary. Two warders came to K again one year later on the morning of his 31st birthday.

In the name of the law, they took him out of the city to a quarry and executed him. K. Have them. Let them. Let them. The trial is the chronicle of that year of K.’s history, of his difficulties and his encounters with the unseen rule and with the untouchable Court. It is essentially an account of the self-destruction caused by the regime. However, the “meaning” is far from clear in the best writing by Kafka.

Just as the parable related by the chaplain in Chapter Nine (called “The Doorkeeper” or “Before the Law”) elicits endless commentary from students of the Law, so has The Trial been a touchstone of twentieth-century critical interpretation.

As some analysts have noted, the nature of exposed fact in some respects is insoluble; as such, it is essentially a result of any religious perception. How can this sort of text be summed up? It was published from 1914 to 1915, Kafka being an official in the Kingdom of Bohemia’s Workmen’s Accident Insurance Institute.

At one point, in the courtroom, we can see a satirical pillorying of the Kafka bureaucracy of Austro-Hungary. Yet for many writers, Kafka’s legally sanctioned death machine was never seen to be the psychological weapons used by the much more insidious totalitarian regimes of the coming days.

It’s also an Associate in Nursing unfinished novel, and also the final chapters show it. it’s sometimes as dyspnoeal to scan because of the unaired rooms of the Court that it describes.

The German title, Der Proses, connotes each a “trial” and a “process,” and it’s maybe this infuriating feeling of certainty that leaves an enduring visceral impression: the machinery has been set in motion, and also the method can grind toward conclusion despite our most desperate exhortations.

Favourite part of the book

Chapter two is my favourite part of this book as this chapter sets the tone of the novel, during this chapter Joseph K receives a telephone call that a short inquiry of his case would crop up on the subsequent Sunday and he was told to be a gift for the more investigation and group action of law.

Joseph K was told the address of the court wherever his inquiry would ensue|turn up|surface|manifest itself|present itself however he had no plan about the time once he was purported to go the court, as a result, he reached there one hour late and he baby-faced several issues whereas getting to court because the court was created in terribly strange and unapparent place.

Throughout the investigation Joseph k had a Gilbertian argument with the judicial officer once he was asked why he was late, he replied {in a|during a|in an exceedingly|in a terribly} very casual manner that he was there then and that they may begin the proceedings.

Dankness, dust, staleness, suffocation, square measure related to the Court throughout the book; K. the shortage of contemporary air is regularly suffering. Here we have the primary hints of it. within the streets, within the hallways and stairwells of this poor neighbourhood, there’s life and vitality. K. manages simply fine. the instant he steps into the Court meeting hall, K. feels the air “too thick for him” and steps out once more.

Later K. tries to form out faces within the gallery through the “dimness, dust, and reek.” If K. isn’t physically sickened by the atmosphere (as he is in succeeding chapters), his judgment and colleges do appear addled, that maybe explains the dream quality of the scene.

Conclusion – The Trial by Franz-Kafka

The novel ceaselessly talked regarding the darkness within the judiciary that ultimately meant that the door of the judiciary isn’t opened for folk and to induce justice you would like to possess some contacts with Judicial officers and large shot lawyers else your case wouldn’t get determined of course.

There’s Associate in Nursing instance within the book once it had been told that to induce justice you would like to possess contacts with big-shot lawyers UN agency haven’t seen by folk in reality and even this is often what we tend to see in today’s world.

There are loads of corruption within the judiciary their square measure several backlogs cases we tend to simply more dates once we choose to hear and obtaining justice is incredibly troublesome for a typical man.

It wants a substantial quantity of cash and energy to induce justice and there’s a far-famed expression JUSTICE DELAYED IS EQUALS TO JUSTICE DENIED that is kind of true in current time.

We have encountered several instances wherever the victim had to attend for years before obtaining justice by any suggests that. we’ve seen the instance of the Nirbhaya rape case too wherever the criminals’ square measure still seeking mercy petitions and also the victim is nonetheless to induce justice even when losing her life, this is often a classic example of the slow operating of the judiciary.

Fast track court and speedy trails particularly in criminal offenses within the want of the hour in our judiciary system so the story of Joseph k doesn’t repeat itself and nobody else would claim that HE DIED sort of a DOG AS CLAIMED BY JOSPEH K at the tip OF THIS NOVEL.

“There is a higher court than courts of justice and that is the court of conscience. It supersedes all other courts.” – Mahatma Gandhi

Submitted By: Abhyuday Raj Mishra, HPNLU, Shimla

Originally Published on: Apr 1, 2020

Updated On 23 April 2023 7:05 AM GMT
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