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The Judgment Essay

1084 words - 4 pages

As this narrative unfolds, we see a young man’s struggles to deal with a friend, family struggles and a great deal of internal conflict. Georg Bendemenn, the narrator, opens the parable describing writing a letter to a friend in Russia giving an impression that it’s going to be a simple story about their relationship. However, as the plot unravels Georg begins struggling more and more to maintain his life as it spirals beneath his feet. Georg Bendemenn is psychologically unstable because of the relationship troubles with his friend and father as well as ‘the judgment’ leading to his final decision.
In the beginning of the story, Georg has just finished writing a letter to his friend in Russia when he is “gazing out of the window at the river, the bridge, and the hills on the farther bank with their tender green (Kafka 77).” The descriptive words used in this first paragraph such as ‘gazing’ and ‘tender green’ give a very laid back, relaxed feel to the introduction of the story which the audience assumes is setting the tone for the entire narrative. Right after the Russian friend is described, the narrator is questioning how to approach a man with so many issues, noting that he “could be sorry for [his friend] but could not help (Kafka 77).” The narrator continues presenting his friend as a man that must be protected because of his impeding frailty, exemplified by “his skin growing so yellow as to indicate some latent condition (Kafka 77)” also representing psychological frailty due to all the hardships faced by his estranged friend. Georg goes so far as to intentionally avoid telling his friend of his good fortune in business and his impending marriage, which has been known for two months. Also interestingly enough, the friend identity and occupation are never revealed, which can be interpreted as a way to further isolate both Georg and this character. It even appears that Georg subconsciously feels unworthy of friendship, giving reason to further push away his friend, despite saying indicating that it is done for his friend. Through this friendship, Georg’s self- confidence and self-esteem issues are exposed.
Another interesting relationship that Georg has is with his father. The narrator first identifies the father in a very distressed light, addressing his grief and how it was hindering his driving insistence at the business in which both Georg and his father are employed. This gives way for Georg to step in and make improvements from which the business prospers. However, instead of accepting this as a personal achievement, Georg attributes it “mostly due to an accidental run of good fortune (Kafka 78).” This furthers reveals Georg’s self- esteem issues. While entering his father’s room to tell how he shall inform his friend of his engagement, Georg and his father enter a very intense conversation. Georg becomes concerned and regretful for his father’s health due to “the not particularly clean appearance of his underwear (Kafka 84).”...

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