What would you do if you woke up as a dung beetle How would your life
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What would you do if you woke up as a dung beetle? How would your life change? How would your family's life change? In Kafka's,"The Metamorphosis", Gregor Samsa has the opportunity to discover the solution to his worst nightmare. "When Gregor Samsa woke up one morning from unsettling dreams, he found himself changed in his bed into a monstrous vermin" page 1. The beetle symbolizes a worker in an industry who lives a methodical and routine lifestyle, even though it frees him of his responsibilities of humanity and the danger of conformity. It gives him the freedom because he is no longer has to be the soul provider; he is the one reliant upon everyone. His family goes through a transformation; his father and mother change from love to dependability. His relationship with his sister Grete also changes from sharing responsibilities to his reliance upon her. Mrs. Samsa's health begins to debilitate, she begins to faint, and have heart trouble. The family becomes more dependent on the work that they can do together to support the family. Gregor feels like the burden of the family and dies because he doesn't feel loved and needed any longer.
While the beetle may represent the worker, it frees him of responsibilities and humanity. It saves him from conformity and a routine lifestyle. "What a grueling job I've picked!, Day in Day out-on the road…to the devil with it all." (p.4) In "The Metamorphosis," Kafka demonstrates that conforming can be dangerous. The work he does drives him crazy and makes him like the worker. A worker does the same thing every day just as Gregor takes the morning train and goes door to door selling items, then he writes reports and takes the train home everyday. His life is very methodical and boring. Gregor only works to pay off the debts of his father's previous company failure. After Gregor's metamorphosis, he can't work, because the changes restrain him from working for the firm.
The beetle also represents a Christ-like figure, "He had pains all over his body, but it seemed to him that they were gradually getting fainter and fainter and would finally go away all together,"(p.53) represents the pains felt by Jesus Christ when he was being crucified on the cross. The nails were being driven in his hands, feet, and sides in hopes to kill him. Just as Gregor's family was doing
to him. " We must try to get rid of it. We've done everything humanly possible to take care of it and put up with it…" Gregor's family also wants him dead, they are tired of feeding and cleaning up after him. Because, they consider him more of a burden than a part of the family he is treated as a piece of garbage, they don't sweep his room, and they don't care if his room is not suitable. The cleaning lady and the family are all told that if they need the space to store their things to just pile things in Gregor's room. "Whatever was not being used at the moment was just flung into Gregor's room by the cleaning woman, who was always in a big hurry; fortunately Gregor generally saw the object involved and the hand that held it." He took a lot of stuff and out up with a lot of crap. He dealt with people's unwanted garbage just like a dung beetle, even though the things that killed him were the things that pilling in his room and cluttering his space. They thought that piling his room and suffocating him, would kill him and make it easier for them to accept without mourning. They considered his death a good thing in their lives." I'll say," said the cleaning lady and to prove it she pushed Gregor's corpse with her broom a good distance sideways,"Well," said Mr. Samsa ,"now we can thank god." His family is relived when he dies. They no longer have to feed or take care of him. "…Gregor was a member of the family, in spite of his present pathetic repulsive shape, who could not be treated as an enemy; that on the contrary, it was the commandment of the family duty to swallow their disgust and endure him, endure him and
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