Symbolism In Franz Kafka's Metamorphosis

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The Metamorphosis illustrates the consequences of assimilation for the Jewish identity and human sense of self through Gregor’s struggles to communicate, the betrayal of his father, his loss of civic identity when he can no longer work, and the isolation that accompanies the bourgeois lifestyle. Kafka drew from his personal experiences as well as contemporary politics to frame the anxiety of the Samsa household. The Judaism passed onto Franz Kafka from his father left him longing for something more, something Gregor hungers for as well in The Metamorphosis. Isolation and despair fill the pages of Gregor Samsa’s tale but it is the hunger Gregor cannot satisfy. 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. When Gregor’s mutation strips him of his assimilated cover and his …show more content…

A major symbol in the novel Metamorphosis is that of the window in Gregor's room which signifies freedom. Even though he is kept in isolation, Gregor feels a sense of connection to the outside world when he looks out of his window. Whenever he is alone, he sadly goes to the window and looks out at the world he is no longer a part of. Grete seems "to notice that his armchair was standing by the window...[and] push the chair back to the same place by the window" ( Kafka28). Initially this act of kindness on Grete's part showed that she encouraged Gregor to feel appreciated and connected to the outside world (the window). He felt free, even though he was kept in

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