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”The Metamorphosis” by Franz Kafka

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  • Pages: 3
  • Word count: 726
  • Category: Kafka

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Even before Gregor, the main character of The Metamorphosis transforms into a hideous bug, he was already alienated from his family. His alienation from the family was a long process. As a traveling salesman he had to take care of the whole family with profound weight on his shoulders. Gregor’s deadening job and his personal alienation was the cause of his transformation.

One day, when Gregor woke up he found himself turned into a man-sized insect. Everything is surreal. He realizes he cannot go to work with his grotesque features. Gregor’s manager shows up and wants to find out what had happened to him. After being begged by the family and manager, he exits his room, scaring the manager away. The family is disgusted by him, which makes him even more sad. They are judging him by his looks. They think he is not Gregor anymore. They would never think they contributed to his metamorphosis, but they really did. Gregor’s bedroom is also something that contributed to his transformation, because it was dirty and he was always depressed in it. With a picture of a girl in fur, this shows his lack of a long-lasting relationship.

In the first chapter Gregor’s sister, Grete, was the only one who cared about him, and took care of him, however as time goes by, her interest towards Gregor is fading away. Because of the lack of care, Gregor starts behaving more like an insect and starts getting used to his new body. “Gregor had become much calmer”,(Kafka,13). As the family becomes more obnoxious, his humanity is fading away more and more every day. His Mother and Grete takes out the furniture from his room so he has space to crawl. It shows how they don’t appreciate him anymore. They don’t care that he is an insect and they don’t really want to help him change back into a human. He may be a bug at first looks, but is a human inside.

“The wound on Gregor’s back began to hurt anew when mother and sister…sat cheek to cheek…(with Gregor’s door shut)” (Kafka, 40). He has wounds because his father was throwing apples at him. However, it was not really the wounds on his body hurting, but the wounds of his soul. At this point, he still hopes, that someday he will turn back into human. He does not want to give up on life. “The sister thinks of Gregor as an omen who wants the family to “sleep in the gutter” (Kafka, 49). In reality, he has been the one giving them luxuries. Now, they have alienated him, causing him to go through the stages of depression. Like Unifinished Business by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, Gregor deals with a depression-like disease leading to his death.

He revolves around his acknowledge of the metamorphosis being surreal, to becoming angered and starting to create havoc, to sadness, to acceptance that led to his death. By the end, his family told him, he must leave, because they cannot take his presence anymore. Gregor was never really transformed into an insect, because he was still himself from the inside. But his family went through a real metamorphosis. They were the ones who turned into disgusting ”animals”. Because how they behaved, was ridiculously disgusting. After he had to leave, he gave up on life. “Outside the window, everything was beginning to grow light (Kafka, 51). This means, everything was beginning to grow light outside, but inside where he was everything started to be “dark”, he just wanted to die. His death made his family happy, they became independent, they Thanked God, he took him away from them.

Gregor was set as a monster. Although he was only a man who helped his family whatever happened, worked long hours, and was a beautiful person. His family was who drived him crazy, and this craziness turned him into a bug. He was a bug, with the inside of a human. The family was the one who turned into “disgusting bugs” from the inside, but had human characteristics on the outside. Don’t judge a book by it’s cover, because maybe it is beautiful from the outside, but the inside is “rotting”. And also, it is possible that something\someone isn’t the prettiest thing you have ever seen, but maybe the inside is precious.

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