First Sorrow 1First Sorrow
“The Life of a Talented Trapeze Artist”
Dwamena Paddy
Prof. Hamilton

First Sorrow 2

“The Life of a Talented Trapeze Artist”
According to the short story “First Sorrow”, Kafka describes the lifestyle of an extremely talented but a reserved trapeze artist. Throughout the story, Kafka classifies the trapeze artist to be a seclusive person who only focuses on constant practices without engaging in any real social life (except communicating with his fellow acrobats and workmen) just to perfect his skills. The trapeze artist is a child.
The trapeze artist cries when he’s sad like a child. In the story, Kafka mentioned that “the trapeze artist burst into tears when he tried to capture the manager’s attention with a very quiet question which was about getting another trapeze artist”(Para.4, P.233). When he was crying, the manager comforted and reassured him of getting another trapeze artist. He climbs back happily atop his luggage and sleeps like a baby. This kind of reaction gives us a clue that the trapeze artist is a child.
The manager acts as a parent to the trapeze artist. Based on the understanding of the story, the trapeze artist receives special treatment more than the others. For example: “when they are traveling on railway, he gets a whole compartment for himself “(Para.2, P.232). When he is training on his trapeze, everything the trapeze artist request from the manager is fulfilled (intro. P.231). Not only that, “the manager even caressed the trapeze artist cheek to cheek just to comfort him when he burst into tears after a quiet conversation about hiring a second trapeze artist”(Para.4, P. 233). The…

First sorrow