The Metamorphosis


Kafka wrote "" in 1912, taking three weeks to compose
the story. While he had expressed earlier satisfaction with the work, he later
found it to be flawed, even calling the ending "unreadable." But whatever his
own opinion may have been, the short story has become one of the most popularly
read and analyzed works of twentieth-century literature. Isolation and
alienation are at the heart of this surreal story of a man transformed overnight
into a kind of beetle. In contrast to much of Kafka's fiction, "The
Metamorphosis" has not a sense of incompleteness. It is formally structured
into three Roman-numbered parts, with each section having its own climax. A
number of themes run through ...

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is found in her changing relationship
with her brother. It is Grete's changing actions, feelings, and speech toward
her brother, coupled with her accession to womanhood, that seem to parallel
Gregor's own metamorphosis. This change represents her metamorphosis form
adolescence into adulthood but at the same time it marks the final demise of
Gregor. Thus a certain symmetry is to be found in "The Metamorphosis": while
Gregor falls in the midst of despair, Grete ascends to a self-sufficient, sexual
woman.

It is Grete who initially tries conscientiously to do whatever she can
for Gregor. She attempts to find out what he eats, to make him feel comfortable,
and to anticipate his desires. Grete, in an act of goodwill and love toward
Gregor, "brought him a wide assortment of things, all spread out on old
newspaper: old, half-rotten vegetables; bones left over from the evening meal,
caked with congealed white sauce; some raisins and almonds; a piece of cheese,
which two days ...

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all the
more for him" (p. 34).

The change in Grete's attitudes and actions toward Gregor probably fully
begin in Part II, during the scene where Gregor struggles over to the window and
leans against the panes to look outside. Grete, seemingly beginning to forget
the Gregor still has human feelings and sensitivities, rudely opens the window
and voices her disgust at the distasteful odor of his den. Moreover, she
doesn't bother to hide her feelings when she sees him. One day, about a month
after Gregor's metamorphosis, "when there was surely no reason for her to be
still startled at his appearance, she came a little earlier than usual and found
him gazing out of the window...she ...

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"The Metamorphosis." Essayworld.com. August 8, 2005. Accessed June 18, 2018. http://www.essayworld.com/essays/The-Metamorphosis/31326.
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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 8/8/2005 01:13:55 AM
Category: Book Reports
Type: Free Paper
Words: 1690
Pages: 7

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