On Parables

On Parables is a short story fragment by Franz Kafka.[1] The piece consists of a narrative on the merit of parables. If in fact, the debate over if they are useful or merely folklore handed down from one generation to the next. The narrator mentions parables are not necessarily useful, after all they've been around for many years yet people still struggle with the same difficulties despite their "wisdom." In fact, the story ends by claiming the text in itself can be interpreted as a parable.


The story was written while Kafka was reading Judaica, and was particularly interested in the lore associated with Mishna.[2] Interestingly, Kafka's Blue Octavo Notebooks are full of parables, many observations about daily life intertwined with poignant twists.


  1. ^ The complete stories. Franz Kafka, NN Glatzer, W Muir.1971.
  2. ^ Parable and paradox. H Politzer, Franz Kafka - Ithaca, New York, 1962

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