Metamorphosis is the story of Gregor Samsa-traveling salesman and bread winner for his family.
One morning he wakes up in his bed to find that he has transformed during the night into a giant
cockroach. In his new state he loses his job, is rejected by his family, and eventually dies as a
giant insect by wounds inflicted by his father. Although this story is disturbing on the outside,
there is more to it than meets the eye.
There are interpretations galore of this short story, but the one that seems most
symbolically accurate is that the story is a reflection of society. Kafka's family life was
troubled. Kafka was an anti-social boy and he was ostracized by his father for every decision he
made that displeased his father. His father once called a good friend of his a flea-ridden dog and
vermin. The story may be taken from this point of view. "Metamorphosis" may be told from a
literal perspective of how it would be if he were actually vermin to illustrate the way it feels to
In society when a person obtains a label, justly or unjustly, it stays. Nothing the labeled
says or does can be used to rid themselves of that label. Often the points the labeled make are
interpreted as proving the label to be true. When a person is labeled as insane, nothing the person
says or does is trusted. Rather, every action and statement are questioned and believed to be the
doings of a mad man. Someone labeled as a "slut" is incapable of developing real relationships
because everything done to make something meaningful for the labeled is construed as nothing
more than sexual advances. A label such as being a funny person often leave people incapable of
trusting or taking the labeled seriously. If labeled as a deviant from the norm in any way, then
the label stays and the society of the norm lacks trust and faith in the labeled.
But as such as deviants are despised by society, they are al...
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