Metamorposis- the real metamorphosis involved only the family

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Metamorphosis of the Family in Kafka's Metamorphosis

In Franz Kafka's Metamorphosis, the nature of Gregor Samsa's reality

changes insignificantly in spite of his drastic physical changes. Gregor's

life before the metamorphosis was limited to working and caring for his

family. As a traveling salesman, Gregor worked long, hard hours that left

little time to experience "life." He reflects on his life acknowledging the

"plague of traveling: the anxieties of changing trains, the irregular,

inferior meals, the ever changing faces, never to be seen again, people

with whom one has no chance to be friendly" (Kafka 13). Gregor, working to

pay off his family's debt, has resigned himself to a life full of work.

Kafka himself paralleled this sentiment in a quote taken from his diaries

noting that no matter how hard you work "that work still doesn't entitle

you to loving concern for people. Instead, you're alone, a total stranger,

a mere object of curiosity" (Pawel 167).

Gregor submerges himself in work

and becomes a stranger to himself and to life. Any type of social contact

beyond porters, waitresses or bartenders was non-existent. He had once met

a "cashier in a hat shop, whom he had pursued earnestly but too slowly"

(Kafka 76).

There was no room in Gregor's life for people other that his family and as

a result was condemned to a life without love or caring not to mention

basic companionship. He worked diligently to provide for his family and

that remained his only goal in life. Gregor's family relied on him to be

the "breadwinner" of the family, but gave him nothing in return. The life

that he had led until now was one fully of obligations and loneliness; he

came home to empty hotel rooms or his apathetic family.

His parents and "their dominance...