Metamorphosis Analysis

1761 Words Oct 9th, 2007 8 Pages
Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis is so strikingly absurd that it has engendered countless essays dissecting every possible rational and irrational aspect of the book. One such essay is entitled "Kafka's Obscurity" by Ralph Freedman in which he delves down into the pages of The Metamorphosis and ferrets out the esoteric aspects of Kafka's writing. Freedman postulates that Gregor Samsa progresses through several transformations: a transformation of spatial relations, a transformation of time, and a transformation of self consciousness, with his conscious mutation having an antithetical effect on the family opposite to that of Gregor. His conjectures are, for the most part, fairly accurate; Gregor devolves in both his spatial awareness and his …show more content…
Here Gregor is shown to have a clearly defined routine when, at a specific time, he would lie in front of the door two hours before dusk. Such a practice could not have been possible for Gregor if he had begun to lose his sense of time. Kafka writes about Gregor's routine fully "over a month" after his father threw the apple at Gregor's back (38). Hence, the postulation that "after his last foray into humanity, his fatal wound, [his sense of time] . . . begins to dim" (Freedman 132) is proved to be erroneous. Unlike the misconception that Gregor loses his perception of time, the belief that Gregor loses his human consciousness is supported throughout the entire book. In the very beginning, Gregor responds to his sister's concerned questions "by making an effort, through meticulous pronunciation and by inserting long pauses between individual words, to eliminate everything in his voice that might betray him" (Kafka 6). Even though Gregor must arduously exert himself to speak normally, he is at least able to vocalize something that sounds like a human tongue. A mere five minutes later, Gregor gives a long explanation to his sales manager about why he missed the five o'clock train, and Gregor assures the manager that he will be up and changed and ready to go in just a few minutes. However, no one on the other side of the door can understand him: not the manager, nor his mother, father, or even his sister. The manager states that the speech,