There lies the existentialism of Soren Kierkegard behind Kafka’s popular novel The Trial. Kierkegaard says that the human existence is individual, cannot be verified objectively and existence refers to the personal experience of the mortal one with the immortal. The novel opens with the awareness of the fact that man is “arrested” which gives start to a critical intellectual journey for the main character K. as he leaves the objective for the subjective. From now on, K. is anxious. Kierkeegard describes the difference between fear and anxiety as below:
“…fear is a retreat from the formidable possibilities lay beyond one’s own conscious power. Anxiety, on the other hand, arises from enormous possibilities immanent to man’s capacity to act…”
To Kierkeegard, man’s existentialist journey is a consequence of his “free” choices. To him, choosing matters but what matters more is to choose at the right time.
Most people try to find a way to escape from the responsibility of choosing. This actually is an escape from the anxiety. Some prefers to fulfil others’ expectations rather than choosing a path for themselves. Kierkeegard has something to say to those:
“In fact you are nothing, you are merely a relationship to others.”
Mustafa H. Koca
M. Sefa Keski