Kafka’s Metamorphsis

10 October 2016

Metamorphosis Kafka writes in part two “Did he really want the warm room, so cozily appointed with heirlooms, transformed into a lair, where he might, of course, be able to creep, unimpeded, in any direction, though forgetting his human past swiftly and totally? ” This is the point of the story when Gregor starts to come to terms with his new life as an insect. He has not completely and totally let go of human emotions, but he has started to accept his new body and embrace his new abilities.

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Gregor starts to feel torn between the choosing the insect life and the human life, as he still has a desire to help provide for his family, and into part three his desire turns to shame when he realizes that he financially and mentally burdening his family. His mother, wanting to accommodate her son, removes the furniture in room so he can move more freely in it. However, Gregor still has a need to have human belongings in his room. The picture of the woman in the furs, for example, has significance for Gregor because it reminded him of his former life.

His sister Grete, is the only one who seems to get close to him, even though there is at least in the first two parts of the story, sympathy for Gregor from his mother and sister. Gregor’s father was unkind man who seemed primarily concerned with finances, even from the first day of Gregor’s metamorphosis, and even attacks Gregor later on in the story with fruit, injuring him. Although it is not possible for a human being to turn into an insect and the concept is absurd, Kafka must be using the metamorphosis of an insect as a symbol itself. Perhaps it is representing an illness that a person has no control over or an addiction. This arguably is an illness as well) There is no indication that Gregor did anything to deserve to be changed to into an insect, and his mother refers to him as her “unfortunate son”. In part three, the sympathy that had been there for Gregor begins to wane, as the family grows tired. Gregor, who hardly eats, knows that he is a burden. All the while, us as the readers know that Gregor still has human thoughts and feelings, since the story was written in third person. The family members are unaware of this and start to see him simply as a bug.

The elderly cleaning lady refers to him as “the old dung beetle” and assumes care of Gregor. After borders discovered Gregor and were horrified by him, it was a turning point for the family. He must go,” cried Gregor’s sister, “that’s the only solution, Father. You must just try to get rid of the idea that this is Gregor. The fact that we’ve believed it for so long is the root of all our trouble. ” This is also a point when Kafka makes a climatic change in the story, Gregor is no longer seen as family member and there is animosity between him and his family.

His identity had been completely lost to the insect. Still, in the final act of altruism, Gregor chose to no longer be a liability to his family and starved himself. After his death, there is a new metamorphosis in Grete, changing from girl into a grown woman. This time, it is a positive one. “Lapsing into silence and communicating almost unconsciously with their eyes, they reflected that it was high time they found a decent husband for her. And it was like a confirmation of their new dreams and good intentions that at the end of their ride the daughter was the first to get up, stretching her young body. ”

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