Symbolism in Franz Kafka’s “The Metamorphosis”
In Franz Kafka’s “The Metamorphosis”, the protagonist, Gregor Samsa, in desperate need of appreciation, took the responsibility and obligation of maintaining his unappreciative family member’s every day life. While traumatic instances occur, the limits of the family’s loyalty and sympathy for Gregor’s needs are rejected by the ones he cherishes the most. Obviously, one can notice the unconditional love Gregor shows his family, but the profound transformation he physically endures leaves him now as his family’s burden (SparkNotes Editors). Although many instances occur throughout Gregor’s transformation that shows new profound realization of his unsympathetic family, one can analyze the many symbols shown in this tragic story.
The main symbol introduced in this story is the metamorphosis that actually takes place to Gregor physically. The physical change into a giant bug, which is the lowest of all creatures, portrayed as dirty, disease-ridden, and disgusting symbolizes how insignificant and empty Gregor’s life was (Huffenenglish). The action in which turning into a giant bug shows the relationship contrast between Gregor and his family. Gregor
was once the element that held this family together because of his money burden due to his parents but now the one element that is greatly disturbing to his family. Although Gregor desperately attempts pleasing his family, he realizes his job, personal life, and existence meaningless to his family after his transformation.
After Gregor’s dramatic transformation, his father strips his room of any furniture or personal items. The removal of his furniture signifies his chance of never being human in his father’s eyes again (Huffenenglish). The furniture that was once in his room was a significant link to his fast, the element of humanity. While Gregor’s father rampages through his room removing everything, Gregor clung to a picture of the women in a fur coat....
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