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Saint Petersburg is the setting of The Trial.


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It's easy to see this as a conflict between literacy (represented by the Old Man) and illiteracy (represented by the Childlike Empress), but I don't think that was what was intended. Just before this passage (still within chapter 12), we read in the message of The Old Man of Wandering Mountain (from the 1983 English translation by Ralph Manheim, formatted ...


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