1. of, pertaining to, characteristic of, or resembling the literary work of Franz Kafka: the Kafkaesque terror of the endless interrogations.
2. marked by a senseless, disorienting, often menacing complexity: Kafkaesque bureaucracies.
If one reads Franz Kafka’s parable, BEFORE THE LAW, as an example of what it’s like to be a gay closet-case, not being able to escape one’s own closet because of one’s own sexual guilt, fear and self-loathing – then wouldn’t that interpretation lead to a new definition of plain vanilla ‘kafkaesque’?
A ‘gay kafkaesque’ that pertains to Kafka’s fear of “endless interrogations”—fear resulting as much from endless guilty interrogations by himself as from various and sundry bureaucratic interrogators such as the ones in THE TRIAL?
Wouldn’t these self-interrogations be even more “senseless, disorienting and menacing” than by unknown faceless entities – since, after all, nobody knows Kafka as well as Kafka knows himself?
In other words, nobody knows how gay and closeted Kafka really is, nobody senses the guilt and self-loathing that Kafka feels – other than Kafka himself.
And nobody is more aware of the senseless, disorienting, often menacing complexity of being a closet-case in a society that imposes bureaucratic restrictions on GLBT individuals – than a fellow bureaucrat (attorney & insurance executive) who stands BEFORE THE LAW.
Kafka lives, dies, writes, struggles - within his own personal ‘gay kafkaesque’ modern bureaucracy. He doesn’t need DADT or DOMA to tell him or guide him or restrict him or punish him or tell him what to do – because Kafka knows already. Only too well.
Kafka is his own closet-case defendant – in his own personal trial BEFORE THE LAW. His closet was built just for him – by Society, Religion and his own tortured consciousness.
The Closet’s power and influence over him - is based on his own nightmarish paranoiac self-imposed interrogation and TRIAL that goes on every day of his so-called ‘gay kafkaesque’ existence.
That’s what an attorney, claims adjustment officer and insurance agent for the Worker's Accident Insurance Institute for the Kingdom of Bohemia does best.
Kafka’s job involves investigating and assessing compensation for personal injury to himself; accidents such as lost fingers or limbs are rather commonplace matters at this time in Prague.
But closeted Kafka does more than just that—he himself is his own Judge and Jury.