Mr. K Released
- Author: Matéi Visniec, Jozefina Komporaly
- Publisher: Seagull Books
- ISBN: 9780857426482
Mirroring Romania’s drastic transition from totalitarianism to Western-style freedom in the late 1980s, Mr. K Released captures the disturbingly surreal feeling that many newly liberated prisoners face when they leave captivity. Employing his trademark playful absurdity, Matéi Visniec introduces us to Mr. K, a Kafkaesque figure who has been imprisoned for years for an undisclosed crime in a penitentiary with mysterious tunnels. One day, Mr. K finds himself unexpectedly released. Unable to comprehend his sudden liberation, he becomes traumatized by the realities of freedom—more so than the familiar trauma of captivity or imprisonment. In the hope of obtaining some clarification, Mr. K keeps waiting for an appointment with the prison governor, however, their meeting is constantly being delayed. During this endless process of waiting, Mr. K gets caught up in a clinical exploration of his physical surroundings. He does not have the courage or indeed inclination to leave, but can move unrestricted within the prison compound, charting endless series of absurd circles in which readers might paradoxically recognize themselves.