Franz Kafka died on this day from complications brought on by tuberculosis in 1924. Although he was unknown in his lifetime, he went on to become one of the most influential writers of the 20th century, spawned the term Kafkaesque, and had a few monuments built in his honor.
“Anyone who cannot come to terms with his life while he is alive needs one hand to ward off a little his despair over his fate . . . but with his other hand he can note down what he sees among the ruins.”
– Kafka diary entry, October 19, 1921