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Litstuff: Links for May 2012

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Will Self at Kafka’s Wound

Or is it only that every generation manufactures the Kafka they want, and while in the middle of the last century, the Kafka whose minatory tales foreshadowed the Holocaust and Soviet totalitarianism was, in contemporary governmental-business jargon, fit for purpose, now we require another kind of Kafka altogether? The constant here, surely, is irony.

25 Handy Words That Simply Don’t Exist In English

 Litost (Czech): a state of torment created by the sudden sight of one’s own misery

Mamihlapinatapai (Yaghan): A look between two people that suggests an unspoken, shared desire

Waldeinsamkeit (German): The feeling of being alone in the woods

Yoko meshi (Japanese): literally ‘a meal eaten sideways,’ referring to the peculiar stress induced by speaking a foreign language

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