Essay on Changing Familial Structure in Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis

Essay on Changing Familial Structure in Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis

Length: 953 words (2.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

In Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis, change is rampant throughout the novel. The social, emotional and physical changes affect all the characters. After his transformation, Gregor’s attitude towards his family shifts from adoration and sacrifice to the acknowledgement that his family no longer cares for him. The Samsa’s blatant dislike of Gregor’s new physical condition is met with feelings of guilt and a need to be loved. He becomes a creature of great disappointment and sullenness, not helped by his parents’ obvious resentment towards him.
Although he is a bug, Gregor continues to maintain his guardian-like position over the family. Gregor, although his family refuses to directly associate with him, focuses his entire existence on them. As he lies in his room, he “could see the whole family sitting at the table . . . and could listen to their conversation” (Kafka 38). Gregor watches and presides over his family and still attempts to remain a member of his family despite their attempts to ignore his existence. “Everyday around dusk, the living-room door- which he was in the habit of watching closely was opened” (Kafka 38). This exemplifies the Samsa’s attempts at keeping him a member of the family, but disallowing him to fully interact with them. Gregor’s deplorable and dismal existence leaves him little responsibilities with which to preoccupy him. He spends his new-found free time focusing on his family’s affairs. He is confined to his room and his only outlet to the world is his bedroom door. He “[watches] it closely for an hour or two” (Kafka 38) before it’s opened every evening. Even though Gregor is allotted to come in contact with the outside world only a few times per day, his family captivates his attention all the ti...


... middle of paper ...


...o care for them.
The Samsas are a family that pride themselves on appearances. Gregor no longer fits into their plans, so they treated him with as much disdain as possible. Kafka presents this through symbolic meaning, personal reflections, role reversals within the family, and Gregor’s maintaining of the guardian position in the family. Gregor continues to try to involve himself in his family’s affairs, but is unsuccessful. His physical ailments symbolize the problems in his life and relationships with his family. His relationships suffer mainly due to the change in family dynamic and responsibility. Gregor’s death is symbolic of the end of his family’s patience in dealing with him, as well as his final understanding that the family he thought loved him, actually does not.



Works Cited

Kafka, Franz. The Metamorphosis. NY, NY: Bantam Dell, 1915. 38-39. Print.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka Essay

- Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis is a short story written during the nineteenth century that took place during the Modernist Era. The novella was not meant to be published because Franz Kafka specifically told his close friend that he wants his work to be burned. When Kafka suffered from tuberculosis and passed away, his close friend, Max Brod reviewed his work. He thought Kafka's work was brilliant and decided to published his work. Gregor Samsa’s transformation into a vermin has shown the lost of humanity in which it will show the similarity between the main character and the narrator as well as the impact Gregor Samsa’s loved ones have on him....   [tags: modernist era, gregor, deconstruction]

Better Essays
889 words (2.5 pages)

Franz Kafka's Novella, The Metamorphosis Essay

- One of the saddest aspects of Franz Kafka's novella, The Metamorphosis, concerns the fact that young Gregor Samsa genuinely cares about this family, working hard to support them, even though they do little for themselves. On the surface, Kafka's 1916 novella, seems to be just a tale of Gregor morphing into a cockroach, but, a closer reading with Marx and Engels economic theories in mind, reveals an imposing metaphor that gives the improbable story a great deal of relevance to the structure of Marxist society....   [tags: Franz Kafka, The Metamorphosis]

Better Essays
1197 words (3.4 pages)

The Metamorphosis By Franz Kafka Essay

- Franz Kafka’s work of fiction, The Metamorphosis, is one of the most striking pieces of literature due to his unique writing style, going so far as to coin the term Kafkaesque. This vivid story is so magnifying because it depicts the realities which Kafka experienced in his personal life. The author uses his fictional work as a tool to express themes such as the father-son relationship, isolation, and physical and mental illness. The first theme that Kafka’s fictional story touches upon is that of the Father-son relationship....   [tags: The Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka, Gregor Samsa]

Better Essays
1171 words (3.3 pages)

Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis Essay

- In this paper I will interpret the short story, The Metamorphosis, by Franz Kafka. My purpose is to explain to my classmates the short story’s goal what Kafka wanted to transmit to people. I want to expand more why this short story is considered one of the best poetic imagination works. In my research I expect to use Kafka’s work, The Metamorphosis as my primary source. Important other sources include essay critiques from different editors, which will help us to understand much more what Franz wanted to express....   [tags: Franz Kafka, The Metamorphosis]

Better Essays
1099 words (3.1 pages)

The Metamorphosis By Franz Kafka Essay

- ... A cockroach a nocturnal insect, pest to humans, a German cockroach when left in isolation is said to keep cocooning in its shelter, interacting less with its kind and was less inclined to interact with potential female mates; all too familiar to Khafa’s real life. F. Kafka had a troublesome life. Franz Kafka, a man in his days that felt nothing but isolation, fear and inferiority. His main conflicts were with that of himself and his father’s. F. Kafka was constantly tormented by his own thoughts, thoughts that he was incompetent and ignominious....   [tags: The Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka, Gregor Samsa]

Better Essays
990 words (2.8 pages)

The Metamorphosis By Franz Kafka Essay

- When first reading a story about a family, the reader typically thinks of the perfect usually family that is portrayed in many movies and television shows to come. The father works and loves his family, the mother is a stay-at-home mom and takes care of the whole family, the son goes to college to make a life for himself, and the daughter goes to school and excels in everything she does. In the short novel The Metamorphosis written by Franz Kafka, the family is not portrayed in this way. The father stays at home and is abusive not only physically but emotionally as well, the mother does stay home but only to take care of the father, their son Gregor is the breadwinner of the family but he...   [tags: Family, The Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka, Abuse]

Better Essays
992 words (2.8 pages)

The Metamorphosis By Franz Kafka Essay

- ... Before Gregor woke from troubled dreams” to find himself “transformed in his bed into a horrible vermin,” he was a traveling salesman working to pay off the debt his family had acquired five years ago after the collapse of his father’s business. Gregor is akin to a machine, as he is described as “only ever thinking about business.” The novella states, “in fifteen years of service Gregor had never once yet been ill.” He exhibits an extreme, unnatural devotion to his job and his duty to pay off his family’s debt....   [tags: The Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka, Gregor Samsa]

Better Essays
936 words (2.7 pages)

The Unloving Society in The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka Essays

- In The Metamorphosis, through the characterization of Gregor Samsa, Franz Kafka can question the existence of unconditional love. Throughout the post-modernist era, writers argued against society’s ideas and customs, and Kafka decided to narrow it down to focus on was the lack of love among people in this time. Kafka begins by making his argument evident through a through description of Gregor’s room, which is depicted as an isolated area in the house for Gregor. He later on goes to describe Gregor’s personality as one who is dedicated to his family and gives little time to himself and his own social life....   [tags: Franz Kafka, The Metamorphosis]

Better Essays
853 words (2.4 pages)

Essay about The Castle By Franz Kafka

- To live is not just to exist. For one to exist one must live, explore, and learn about life’s ways. For some existence may be a hard thing to achieve in life. The Castle, by Franz Kafka depicts the meaning of life and existence, showing that human nature can make one’s life a difficult journey. In the novel, Kafka shows that life is never the way it seems and will always have loose ends.      Such a journey life is, especially for K. wondering around looking for a place to which he belonged, somewhere to call home....   [tags: Franz Kafka]

Better Essays
634 words (1.8 pages)

Essay on Franz Kafka's Metamorphosis

- Franz Kafka's Metamorphosis The play metamorphosis was written by Franz Kafka but Steven Berkoff produced a theatre adaptation of Metamorphosis in the late 1960’s. Kafka was born 1883, his childhood was most troubling and life hard, as he was a Jew growing up in German culture, also being ignored and alienated is why Kafka could relate to the character Gregor. Kafka had a hard relationship with his Father who would mistreat him and often tell Kafka he was a failure and a disappointment, which came through on to the character of Gregor’s Father, another reason for Kafka to relate to Gregor....   [tags: Franz Kafka Metamorphosis]

Better Essays
792 words (2.3 pages)