Both in his correspondence and his Diaries, Kafka frequently complains about his life at work, first of all the brief period at the Assicurazioni Generali Insurance Company, and then the fourteen whole years at the Workers’ Accident Insurance Institute. It would be wrong, however, to consider him a long-suffering official depressed by his work at the office, one who did not enjoy the work or even found it detestable. On the contrary, he was a model official, precise and efficient, who successfully climbed the career ladder. His objections to his work at the office were quite different and more deep-seated. In the ‘double life’ between the office and writing that he was forced to lead, employment represented an obstacle to his life’s work of writing that was hard to overcome. This contradiction was all the more poignant in that the Austrian style of officialdom represented stability in his life, whereas writing never ceased to be for him a constant source of insecurity.
Both institutions where Kafka was employed were also located close to his places of residence:
  • the headquarters of Assicurazioni Generali (Wenceslas Square)
  • the headquarters of the Workers’ Accident Insurance Institute for the Kingdom of Bohemia (Na Poříčí Street 7)
While working, he attended a course in accident insurance at the German Commercial Academy on Masný trh Square.