Franz Kafka starts his story, The Metamorphosis, by transforming his main character into a vermin, one of the most disgusting and loathsome insects. With Gregor’s transformation, Kafka is exposing a metaphorical view of how life can be shown in a tangible, physical way. Gregor’s metamorphosis consists in his insides coming out. His new state of being reflects his life and his inner thoughts. A cockroach is a tangible representation of how he feels about his life and the relationship with his family.
As the story progresses, Gregor becomes aware of his waning humanity because of his lack of interaction with the other members of the family. His degradation as a human, however, began before his physical transformation, due to his ceaseless devotion to work. Informing the audience of the Samsa family’s backstory, at one point the narrator states that “They had been good times and they had never come again, at least not with the same splendour, even though Gregor had later earned so much that he was in a position to bear the costs of the whole family, and did bear them. They had even got used to it, both Gregor and the family, they took the money with gratitude and he was glad to provide it, although there was no longer much warm affection given in return” (Samsa 15). The narrator’s statement encapsulates the tragic path that Gregor took.
Observing the love and affection between others only increases the effect his own solitude has on him. He is aware of his otherness and knows that he is “shut out from intercourse” (84) with the people he holds so dear. It can be argued that this is the point where the creature’s humanity is the strongest throughout the course of story. He has a basic understanding of human societies, he speaks and reads their language, shows compassion and, most importantly, seeks their company and friendship. In his knowledge that social belonging is the missing component to his own happiness, he confronts the people he secretly observed only to, once again, be met with fear and anger (94-95).
He eventually copes with his loneliness and finds hope beyond his despair, but the hunger is more problematic. His new form has him ravenous but he cannot tolerate the foods he once loved. He has no idea how to nourish his new body. Gregor’s physical nourishment once met by garbage and leftovers delivered from his sister now gives way to the spiritual and emotional hunger he feels. Kafka warns against the dangers of complacency and assimilation through the objectification of Gregor.
“Maman died today...I don’t know … everything will have a more official feel” (Camus 3). The use of diction shows Meursault's dispassionate to visit his mother. Through the use of words, Meursault is prevailed as emotionless and complicated to understand as he does not mourn for his mother, but is calm and lifeless. Also, through the work of diction, it reveals that Meursault has an affection towards Marie, but does not have a habit of comforting his feelings for her, but goes with what occurs in present.But the relationship he has with Marie shows that he cannot give women a healthy relationship. Meursault is used to sleeping around with her that he does not value love she provides for him.
Society looks down on those who refuse to participate in the rat race, whether voluntarily or circumstantial. In The Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka warns us of the consequences that befall those who do not conform to the norms and expectations of the modern society. The 1914 novella tells us of the metamorphoses in the life of Gregor Samsa, a travelling salesman who woke up one morning as a “gigantic insect”. Gregor Samsa’s physical transformation into a “gigantic insect” brought drastic changes to the dynamics of the household. However, Kafka’s in a matter-of-fact way of narrating made the piece seem like a light read, a disparity to the dark unfolding of events.
This is first shown at the beginning of the text when ”Gregor’s father seized the chief clerk’s stick in his right hand… picked up a large newspaper from the table with his left, and used them to drive Gregor back into his room, stamping his foot at him as he went.“(Kafka, 10). It could be said that the father pushing Gregor into his room, symbolizes alienation, and could also be a foreshadow to Gregor’s isolation. This also shows how the father does not concern himself with Gregor’s transformation, which displays absurdity, a key pillar of existentialism and a motif of the text. Merriam-Webster defines existentialism as, ”a chiefly 20th century philosophical movement embracing diverse doctrines, but centering on analysis of individual existence in an unfathomable universe and the plight of the individual who must assume ultimate responsibility for acts of free will without any certain knowledge of what is right or wrong or good or bad“. This definition applies to the Metamorphosis, as Gregor is in an ”unfathomable universe“, and assumes ”ultimate responsibility for acts of free will“, as he believes he is responsible for forcing his family to provide for themselves.
This comic strip of Snoopy is a great example of the tenet, Simplifying Life. Transcendentalists looked at the world in a different way, they do not dwell on the issues they run into, they move on. Snoopy realizes his issue but move on with his life because it isn’t worth his time, so he goes back to eating.
Baker holds his head down as the ambiguity of not being to control the object around is sad to him. As far as humanity is concerned we’ve could conquer anything until there’s a time where we are suddenly powerless and vulnerable to daily phenomena we can’t control. But, Baker says there’s a peace in knowing we are powerless and at least we are aware of the position and our ignorance. Bakers use of pathos shows us this outcome, conceptually can be alluded to a lot of things that man can’t control but has the power to dictate what happens to us. Sure, the objects are trying to ruin our lives but that doesn’t mean humans can’t live on, we must be able to accept and move
Edmund’s distant relationship with his family enhances these qualities of apathy, yet through the introspections of the character Joseph Hooper, ‘I have tried to avoid my own father’s mistakes, but I have only succeeded in replacing them with my own.’ we gather that he has the consciousness of the responsibility of being a father, however, reluctance from Edmund, hesitation to educate and timidity to reach out prevents the growth of this kinship. In spite of this, the characters of Joseph Hooper become the obstacle that lets him struggle in this relationship---his cowardice, skeptic qualities hinder his behavior to communicate with his son, in order to alleviate his guilt of not interacting actively, he allowed himself to indulge in the stereotypical misconception of all children--- Edmund is unable to perform any act of cruelty, therefore, it is unnecessary to understand the minds of such an innocent being. Though this being said, Joseph Hooper continuously inculcate the value of the red room and his distorted view of dynasty to the mind of Edmund, he regards Warings as fortune and status rather than childhood memories and warmth, ‘The collection is worth a great deal of money.’ As Joseph ponders and acknowledges his mediocrity, which Hill reveals :‘He knew himself to be ineffectual man.’, he admits that the inheritance of Warings can fill the breach in his imperfections and self-esteem. His egocentric pursuits of reputation is revealed in the interior monologues, ‘But now, with his father gone, he could speak of ‘Warings- my place in the country’, the author not only presents the indifference to the father’s death, but reveals his desire to crawl up to the peak of society, or at least, grasp attention from the