Kafka´S The Metamorphosis Essay

1146 words - 5 pages

In Kafka’s “The Metamorphosis”, the character Gregor transforms from a man into a bug, specifically a cockroach. Although Gregor physically changes, he does not change as a person. Gregor merely accepts his new condition as a bug and his family’s continuous abuse and hostility. Gregor’s acceptance of his new bug form is representative of his passive personality before and after his transformation. Gregor’s passivity, in response to the hostile world around him, causes his eventual downfall. Therefore, Kafka uses the character Gregor to exemplify how a passive attitude can cause one’s demise.
Kafka shows Gregor’s passive nature in “The Metamorphosis”. Gregor’s actions are passive before he becomes an insect. This is demonstrated through Gregor’s interactions with his family and coworkers. Gregor worked very hard to keep his family afloat and dig his father out of debt. All profits he made went to his family, he did not spend any of it leisurely. At Gregor’s unrewarding job, he was abused by his boss. Although Gregor despised his job as a salesman he never quit. "What a strenuous career it is that I've chosen! Traveling day in and day out" (Kafka 2). This ironic statement shows Gregor’s unhappiness. The irony of this statement is because Gregor never chose the alienating career as a traveling salesmen. Gregor was forced to be a salesman by his father because he is indebted to his boss. So, Gregor works to pay off his father’s debts. While Gregor works relentlessly at a job he despises his family shows little appreciation for him. It is expected of him to dig his family out of debt. This is an example of Gregor’s passivity. Also, he works at a job with a boss that is cruel to him. Gregor stands up for himself to neither his boss nor his family therefore he is submissive and passive with his life. Gregor allows himself to be thanklessly used for his resources. Once Gregor transforms into an insect his passivity is increasingly apparent.
Gregor maintains submissive personality and does not defend himself. Gregor’s physical change into a bug is the only aspect of him that changes. Gregor continuously allows himself to be abused. Upon Gregor’s transformation, he is unable to go to work. Therefore, the chief clerk visits Gregor to force him to come to work. Gregor remained locked in his room and would not leave for work. So, the clerk became extremely impatient. The frustrated clerk divulges into a cruel and demoralizing speech. He maliciously accuses Gregor of hiding because of unethical involvement in cash receipts. Later, Gregor’s family and the clerk become restless and want to see Gregor. The door to Gregor’s room is unlocked to open and reveal Gregor in his insect form. Gregor’s family and the clerk react with horror. The clerk and Gregor’s mother run away from him in fear. Gregor’s father grabs a stick and a newspaper and dashes toward Gregor, herding Gregor back into his bedroom with prods and fierce...

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