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Metamorphosis Essay

Metamorphosis Essay

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Published by Nicole Davis
The comparisons between Gregor Samsa and Franz Kafka I The Metamorphosis.
The comparisons between Gregor Samsa and Franz Kafka I The Metamorphosis.

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Published by: Nicole Davis on Jun 12, 2009
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Davis 1 Nicole DavisMrs. Carter English III/ 2 Blue04-20-09Metamorphosis Comparative Paper 
The Metamorphosis
is a novel written in 1912 by Franz Kafka. This novel wasoriginally written in German and translated into other languages. This novel is a perfect parallel to Kafka’s life through the main character, Gregor Samsa. Just in the beginningof this novel, there are already many comparisons between the lives of the men and howGregor is a mirror image of Kafka.Just one simple comparison between Gregor and Kafka are their last names andthe way Gregor feels when he wakes in the beginning of the novel. Gregor’s last namedis Samsa and Franz’s last name is Kafka. The similarities are; the a’s are in the same spotin both names and both k’s in Kafka are replaced by s’s. That is a very minor comparison between the two men, but can still lead to another clue that they both share the samelives.In the beginning of 
The Metamorphosis
, Gregor wakes up “from unsettlingdreams, he found himself changed in his bed into a monstrous vermin.” (Kafka 3). He isno longer in his comfortable human body, but transformed into a vermin. This disturbingand uncomfortable situation describes how Kafka felt before he started writing the novel,and how he compares himself (Kafka) to his father. Kafka wrote a letter to his Jewishfiancé, Felice Bauer, describing how he felt right before he began to write
. He says in the letter “I was simply too miserable to get out of bed. It
Davis 2also seemed to me that last night my novel got much worse, and I lay in the lowestdepths… I'll write you again today, even though I still have to run around a lot and shallwrite down a short story that occurred to me during my misery in bed and oppresses mewith inmost intensity.” (Corngold 64). In this letter to Felice, Kafka informs her that hehad a miserable morning and that morning inspired him to write this novel.In the beginning of the novel Gregor can’t get out of bed and he thought, “howsimple everything would be if he could get some help. Two strong persons—he thoughtof his father and the maid…” (Kafka 7). Kafka’s father was a very strong andintimidating man, but on the other hand, Kafka was sensitive and “weak”. Kafka wasconstantly afraid of his father and he portrays this feeling in the novel as well. Gregor questions himself, “should he really call for help? In spite of all his miseries, he could notrepress a smile at this thought.” (Kafka 7). Even Gregor himself is questioning whether he really needs his father to be there, he smiles at the stupidity of even thinking he neededhis father’s help. Gregor and Kafka both dislike their fathers and don’t want theminvolved in their lives or situations, even if they need their help. Gregor also mentionsthat his father was strong and this also relates to Kafka’s father.Also in the beginning of the novel, Kafka mentions a framed page of a magazinewith “a lady done up in a fur hat and a fur boa, sitting upright and raising up against theviewer a heavy fur muff in which her whole forearm had disappeared.” (Kafka 3). Thisdecoration was a pornographic picture that, while his sister and mother were moving outhis furniture, he covered up the frame with his vermin-like body in order to save the picture from being removed. “He squatted on this picture and would not give it up.”(Kafka 26), this strong sexual obsession that Gregor has compares to Kafka’s
Davis 3relationships with women. Kafka had trouble with love, but he had previously beenengaged twice before. Kafka did have an existing relationship with woman, but as withthe picture, it was not very close, as though there was a piece of glass between the couple.He was never able to love completely and broke off most of his relationships due to hislack of self-confidence.Franz Kafka expressed and mirrored his life and feelings through thetransformation of Gregor Samsa. These two men both saw their lives through the samespectacle, but only one really existed.

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