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Franz Kafka the Metamorphosis

Franz Kafka the Metamorphosis.
The Metamorphosis is arguably Franz Kafkas best works of literature where author, Franz Kafka, directly casts upon the negative aspects of his life both mentally and physically. Franz Kafka was a visionary, whose works contained the secret to the future. Kafka’s world is one of a kind. To Kafka popular culture portrays contrast between functional and dysfunctional families to frame the elements that contribute to their formation. In similar pursuit, Kafka recognizes one significant aspect in the establishment of a healthy and stable family.
In The Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka applies symbols, imagery, and settings to impress that a family organization where equally shared responsibilities prevail is more effective in keeping a positive domestic atmosphere. Also Kafka demonstrates the absurdity of human life and the sense of alienation of human existence, a reflection of Kafka’s own life. “Because the notion of bug aptly characterized his sense of worthlessness and parasitism before his father. ” (Neider 262). When Franz Kafka was a boy his father abused him.
Whenever Kafka disagreed with his father or told his father that he wanted to be a writer, his father got very upset with him. Franz was expected to follow the course his father planned out for him. “But from his childhood he considered himself a disappointment to his authoritarian figure parent and inadequate when compared with him. ” (Czech 255). Kafka’s father viewed Franz as a failure and disapproved of his writing because he wanted Franz to become a businessman like him. This obsession with wanting Franz to become a businessman led his father Herrman to beat his son.

There was always a great tension between Kafka and his father; Kafka always had strong mixed feelings toward him. Franz had other siblings but he was left all alone to struggle with the mantle of his father’s expectations and frustrations. The relationship between Gregor and his father is in many ways were similar to Franz and his father Herrman. The emotional and physical abuse Gregor goes through is reciprocal to what Kafka went through in real life. They were both abused and neglected by their fathers when they were disappointed with them.
“The mother and sister almost survive the test, but the father rejects him from the start. (Angus 264). The relationship with his father was reflected in Kafka’s, The Metamorphosis. In the book, Mr. Samsa displayed a violent temper from the very first encounter with the transformed Gregor. “When he chased Greggor back into the room, he kicked him in the back as he reached for the door. ” (Kafka). Kafka illustrates that imbalance in family responsibility results in resentment and hatred. “All our knowledge of Kafka’s life and story technique suggests that it is a precipitation in fantasy of his lifelong sense of loneliness and exclusion. ” (Angus 264).
Quite apart from his isolation within his family, Kafka also felt isolated from the rest of society. Both Samsa and Kafka experienced the difficulties of living in a modern society and the struggle for acceptance of others when in a time of need. Also the lack of affection in Kafka’s childhood is a cause of feeling isolation that both Samsa and Kafka felt. Kafka never seemed to keep a wife. He was engaged twice but both times he was the one that ended the engagement. In The Metamorphosis, Gregor Samsa says “Constantly seeing new faces, no relationships that last or get more intimate. (Kafka).
Gregor Samsa was a character that endured seclusion and exile like no other. Gregor adopts the precaution “of locking all the doors during the night even at home. ” (Kafka). In this quote, the lock symbolizes Gregor’s wish to isolate himself from his family and society due to his anger. “Into a room in which Gregor ruled the bare walls all alone, no human being inside Grete was ever likely to set foot. ” (Kafka 34). The way Samsa was portrayed by his own family was the main cause of the feelings in which Gregor felt.
His family purely the basis of the isolationism. Throughout the book, The Metamorphosis, Kafka creates Gregor to express his own feelings of isolation and alienation. “Reminded even his father that Gregor was a member of the family, in spite contrary, it was the commandment of family duty to swallow their disgust and endure him, endure him and nothing more. ” (Kafka). Kafka, in a similar situation, uses Gregor transforming into a bug as a way of exaggerating himself, trying to express his feelings and point of view.
Kafka saw the world much as he describes in his novels, just as a man who feels himself to be persecuted sees reality fitting into a system, which is really of a spiritual order, to persecute him. ” (Spender 257). Kafka who had the pressure of his father forcing his own occupation on him resulted in a negative way. It was the main reason that caused Kafka’s animosity towards his father. Kafka’s father already forced him to do what he wanted and not what Kafka wanted. This is similar to Gregor’s work life as a salesman. Gregor is not working for himself but to pay the family’s debt; he is unsatisfied with his occupation.
Gregor Samsa is the only provider in the family he gives his family a nice atmosphere making them all feel economic security. Gregor’s atmosphere is one his family wouldn’t understand. He has the burden of finance on just him, only a single person results and this results in bitterness and anger. Kafka implies that in order to achieve a healthy family atmosphere, all members must contribute equally to common causes. Kafka uses symbols to contrast the difference in mood between the unequal and equal shares in financial responsibility of the Samsa’s family.
He also uses imagery and settings to provide a transition between positive and negative opposition as a result of the shift towards balance and evenness of responsibility. His message is about domestic stability. The first page of The Metamorphosis is Gregor’s transformation. This tends to leave many readers confused at what’s actually going on. “Kafka states in the first sentence that Gregor wakes up to find himself changed into a giant kind of vermin (“Ungeziefer”). The term “vermin” holds the key to the double aspect of The Metamorphosis. ” (Sokel 267). When you think vermin you think, bug.
According to the dictionary a vermin is “noxious, objectionable, or disgusting animals collectively, especially those of small size that appear commonly and are difficult to control. ” You think its just something that lives off human beings and maybe sucks their blood. However in context to The Metamorphosis “On the other hand, it connotes something defenseless, something that can be stepped upon and crushed. ” (Sokel 267). These words are proven to be a correlation to how Gregor Samsa felt in The Metamorphosis. This is how Kafka felt about himself. He uses Gregor to expand upon what and how he felt.
He felt this way relating back to his father. Kafka’s father viewed him as a vermin. “Kafka’s famous letter to his father would give support to such a view since Kafka has his father refer to him as a blood-sucking type of vermin, a bedbug or a louse. ” (Sokel 267). Franz Kafka channels his real insecurities into his writing by attributing them to his protagonist, Gregor. The transformation from human to insect depicted in his novel represents the author’s childhood loss of confidence and self-esteem. The Kafkaesque nightmare of The Metamorphosis mimics the authors own life.

Franz Kafka the Metamorphosis

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Franz Kafka

Before the law by Kafka Franz

Before the law by Kafka Franz.
This gatekeeper before the Law knows the intricacies of the web of paths within the gate which are essentially divine. The individual, who wishes to be admitted within the gate, is not given entry as the time is not ripe for his admittance. The man seeking entry has the patience and perseverance and asks whether he can try for entry again sometime later and being curious to know what is within the gate, peeps in.

His many efforts to appease the gatekeeper fail, and till the moment of his death, the man is unable to get the entry and the gatekeeper finally closes the gate. The individual, who wishes to be admitted within the gate, is not given entry as the time is not ripe for his admittance. This gate is, however, specially erected for the man. To gain admittance, his actions and reactions need to fructify and strike the correct balance so that he is eligible to secure the entry. The domain within the gate is no ordinary one and has certain qualifying standards. .

The man seeking entry has the patience and perseverance and asks whether he can try for entry again sometime later and being curious to know what is within the gate, peeps in. The man knows that to get the coveted entry within means to achieve something great. He has decided to hotly pursue the path that he has chosen for him and asks the gatekeeper again and again, at periodical intervals only to get the negative replies. The gatekeeper warns him of the tougher challenges ahead, should he succeed in securing admittance through the first gate guarded by him.
His many efforts to appease the gatekeeper fail, and till the moment of his death, the man is unable to get the entry and the gatekeeper finally closes the gate. Before that the gatekeeper accepts all his offerings, but without any motivated desires, his only objective being to encourage the man in his pursuit. When all his efforts fail, the man shouts at the gatekeeper, as to why no one else ever tried to enter the gate if it is that important, to which the gatekeeper gives the answer that the gate is meant for the man only and none else can enter the gate.
The best of the efforts may not lead one to the desired destination. This gatekeeper before the Law knows the intricacies of the web of paths within the gate that is essentially divine. The individual, who wishes to be admitted within the gate, is not given entry as the time is not ripe for his admittance. The man seeking entry has the patience and perseverance and asks whether he can try for entry again sometime later and being curious to know what is within the gate, peeps in.
His many efforts to appease the gatekeeper fail, and till the moment of his death, the man is unable to get the entry and the gatekeeper finally closes the gate. ============= References Cited: Franz Kafka: Before the Law (e-text). To this gatekeeper comes a man from the country who asks to gain entry into the law. But the gatekeeper says that he… records. viu. ca/~Johnstoi/Kafka/beforethelaw. htm – 11k – Cached, Retrieved on July 16, 2008

Before the law by Kafka Franz

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Franz Kafka

Philosophical Context in Franz Kafka’s Metamorphosis

Philosophical Context in Franz Kafka’s Metamorphosis.
Intro Kafka never fully embraced Zionism, and he remained ambivalent toward Judaism. He was more openly interested in anarchism and socialism, but was not committed to either philosophy because he refused to completely align himself with an established worldview. Modernism -Kafka was exposed to Modernism. -Modernism was a movement during the late 19th century and early twentieth century of scientific, technological and industrial development. Modernists shared a desire to create literature that was new and different. Their belief was to capture the reality of modern life and that rapid change cause uncertainty, disjointedness, and alienation. Kafka wrote about the absurdity of existence, the alienating experience of modern life, and the cruelty of authoritarian power. -The word Kafkaesque has passed into the literature to describe an unsettling, disorienting, nightmarish world that is at once both fearful and menacing in its ambiguity and complexity. Kafka’s views on Humanity Speaking with his friend Max Brod, Kafka once explained that he thought human beings were trapped in a hopeless world. This belief never leaves Kafka’s writing, and it is present in The Metamorphosis, where Gregor’s only option, in the end, is to die.
Ironically, the story ends on an optimistic note, as the family puts itself back together. Existentialism -Kafka never studied philosophy but he was friends with several intellectuals and read works by famous philosophers. -Several people think of Kafka as an existentialist. -Existentialism is a 20th-century philosophical movement, which assumes that people are entirely free and thus responsible for what they make of themselves. -The early 19th century philosopher Soren Kierkegaard is regarded as the father of existentialism. -Franz Kafka was an important literary author in existentialism.
His story, which is surreal, is one of many modernist literary works that was influenced by existentialist philosophy. -The Metamorphosis advances the existential view of the responsibility of the individual to maintain a balance between work and leisure. If one chooses to devote their life entirely to work, they are no more than droning insects, yet if they devote their lives to leisure, they are no better off. -Gregor initially chooses society over himself, which in turn transformed him into the working drone he was. After his physical transformation, he is forced reassert his focus to himself, and society abandons him.

Nietzche and Kierkgaard -Kierkegaard and Nietzsche considered the role of making free choices, Kierkegaard’s knight of faith and Nietzsche’s Ubermensch are representative of people who exhibit Freedom and define the nature of their own existence. -Nietzsche’s ideal individual invents his or her own values and creates the terms under which they excel. -Gregor’s monstrous insect form represents Gregor’s radical refusal to submit to society’s values like Nietzschean Ubermensch. Martin Buber -Kafka was friends with philosopher and existentialist Martin Buber.
They would send each other letters and these letters were later published in Bubers The letters of Martin Buber: a life of dialogue. Together they discussed existentialism and were part of a literary circle. They were both jewish and anarchists. -Shared existentialist rejection of achieving real satisfaction in life. Characters in Kafka’s tales are left wanting something, needing a connection to the world that can never be made complete. Sigmund Freud -Kafka was familiar with the newly published works of Sigmund Freud. -However, he was no Freudian disciple and wrote negatively of psychoanalytic theory. But Gregor’s conflict with his father and the dream-like quality of the story realtes to Freud’s analysis of dreams and the Oedipal complex: – A subconscious sexual desire in a child, especially a male child, for the parent of the opposite sex, usually accompanied by hostility to the parent of the same sex. – All sons feel they are in competition with their father and often feel in a battle against the father. Father vs. Son in Metamorphosis -Gregor seems to have a difficult relationship with his father. His family rejects him, and his main enemy is his father, who wants to kill him. When Gregors father sees Gregor in his insect form, he shakes his fist at him and glares at him fiercely. Later he attacks him with a newspaper and a walking stick, and, bombards him with apples, causing him serious injury. -He is also makes sarcastic comments, suggesting for instance that Gregor’s room is untidy. -It also turns out that he has deceived Gregor about the family finances, thus extending the length of Gregor’s employment at the hateful traveling salesman’s job. -He also does not seem particularly appreciative of the money Gregor has been bringing in. Gregor’s disappointment over the lack of appreciation is one of the few critical thoughts he thinks about his father. -He also thinks briefly that the money his father hid from him could have been used to free him from his job sooner, but he quickly dismisses the thought by saying that no doubt his father knew best. -Basically Gregors father abuses him, but he suppresses his angry responses and accepts his downtrodden state. Marx and Kafka -Karl Marx believed alienation is a result of capitalism. – Kafka was influenced by his political philosophy of Marxism. A Marxist would read Gregor’s inability to work as a protest against the dehumanizing and alienating effects of working in a capitalistic society. -Gregor Samsa, the protagonist, signifies the proletariat, or the working class, and his unnamed manager represents the bourgeoisie. -The conflict that arises between the two after Gregor’s metamorphosis, which leaves him unable to work, represents the dehumanizing structure of class relations. -Finally, the results of Gregors inability to work is abandonment by his family and death. -The words he chooses to describe his job, “torture,” “worrying,” and “miserable” show his discontent with his job.
He says, “If I didn’t hold back for my parents’ sake, I would have quit long ago”. It is only economic necessity that keeps him going to work everyday. Historical Context -In 1912, when Kafka was writing “The Metamorphosis,” Prague was a city of ethnic tensions, primarily between Czechs and Germans and between Czechs and Jews. -Economically, the late nineteenth century marked the climax of the Industrial Revolution in Europe. -Industrial development within the Austro-Hungarian Empire, was not as advanced as in Europe but Prague was one of the most advanced and prosperous cities in the Austro-Hungarian Empire. However, along with the prosperity created by the new industrialism came dislocation and disruption of the old ways, largely as a result of the shift of large numbers of people from the countryside to the city. Industrialization also meant the appearance of large numbers of jobs, for both factory and office workers, which was hardwork. And the school system enforced a system of routine learning that seemed relentlessly joyless—at least it seemed joyless to young Kafka, who hated school, just as he hated his first full? time job. Long hours at boring jobs create alienation. And oppressive employers like Gregor’s were normal.

Philosophical Context in Franz Kafka’s Metamorphosis

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