Main character, does not like change, does as he is told for the sake of his family.
What is the significance of the apple wound on Gregor's back?
- It is infected. Dust worsens it. Dust
- is present on things that are ignored. Represents Gregor's distance from
- his family and possibly how Kafka felt within his own family.
How does Gregor die? Why is this important?
- He stops eating. He dies either from
- infection or starvation, and no one cares. He is merely "tolerated" by
- his family. Kafka also felt he was only "tolerated" by his father.
What is the importance of the fact that Gregor's father, Mr. Samsa, is sleeping in his work uniform?
- It is symbolic of his return to the
- status of breadwinner in the family and refusing to relinquish the role
- again to Gregor. Also, his status is elevated because he works in a
Why does Gregor stop eating?
Either because of the infection, or due to his feelings of dissociation from his family (Kafka's feelings as well?)
What is symbolic about how Gregor's family uses his room for unwanted junk?
He is again only "tolerated", ignored, and forgotten.
What does the title, "The Metamorphosis" refer to?
- The transformation of Gregor's family.
- The main "metamorphosis" happening is beyond Gregor turning into a
- roach, but about how his family becomes functional again when no longer
- enabled to be dependent.
p. 236 "Could he be an animal to be so moved by music?" what does this signify?
Gregor is questioning his humanity
What does Grete do after the violin scene?Grete locks Gregor into the bedroom after this scene and says "Finally!" She has stopped caring for him and now calls him "It".
Grete locks Gregor into the bedroom after this scene and says "Finally!" She has stopped caring for him and now calls him "It".
Who discovers Gregor's body?
The Charwoman. She had been looking in on him daily.
(from lecture) What is the
significance of Gregor's parent's bed being referred to as the
"Matrimonial Bed" in other versions of the text), when learning of
- The matrimonial bed, is where marriage is consummated. Important as it
- indicates new beginning for his parents, renewed and restored
- relationship upon learning of Gregor's death.
What time of year and day does Gregor die? Why does it matter?
- Gregor dies in March, during spring,
- which signifies new beginnings. He also dies in the morning (the dawn of
- a new day), again signifying new beginnings for his family.
What were we told happens in other version of the text during the violin scene?
Gregor is looking up his sister's skirt in other versions of the text, hinting at an incestuous relationship.
What's the importance of Mr. Samsa kicking the boarders out?
What is the final outcome and mood at the end of the story, for Gregor's family?
Hope is restored to the family and now rests with the daughter
What were the major criticisms of how Kafka ended the story?
- Critics said it was too happy, too
- uplifting, and the ending in some ways undoes what Kafka has done
- through the rest of the story.
What is the end result of Gregor's "imprisonment" in a roach body?
- Liberation, from all of his previous
- forms of imprisonment. Gregor was wasimprisoned by his family, job,
- boss, and everyone's expectaions, but most importantly, by his own self
- imposed expectation to live for others and give up all ambition.