The Psychological Insight Into the Metamorphosis

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Since the Greek philosophers people have debated endlessly the extent to which the mind influences oneʼs personal reality, or even reality in general. In the Metamorphosis, the link between Gregorʼs mental and physical reality are in some way linked, and as Gregorʼs ability to function within the parameters of humanity dissipates, his physical links with the human world diminish as well. He loses his personal connection with his own body, and slowly but surely loses connection with the outside world; work and acquaintances progress along without him, and his family shuts him away as if he had never existed. But despite the authorʼs frequent superficial focus on Gregor Samsaʼs physical aspect, it is fundamentally the mental breakdown which Franz Kafka wishes to demonstrate, and the unfathomable control that the mind, whether biochemical or metaphysical, has over the rest of the body. It is striking, in fact, how oblivious Gregor appears to be to the repulsiveness of the situation. One aspect of him still conceives of himself as human enough and attempts to explain his condition to the head clerk who has come to investigate his absence at work and to assuage his familyʼs concerns and horror as they initially view his condition; the other part of Gregor is the condition, an insect lacking any appearance of humanity whatsoever, even without the power of speech. The reader then must question why Gregor has become an insect, and the reasons unfold as the story progresses. The father, never referred to in the possessive sense by Gregor himself, is domineering and almost tyrannical, first in his initial frailty, then in his increasing monopoly over the two women who comprise the rest of his family. Gregor in his musings reveals a deep sense of familial duty, which is only haltingly returned by the two women. His sister takes over Gregorʼs daily needs, attempting to cater to his needs and returning that familial devotion which Gregor feels so strongly. Gregorʼs mother,...
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