A common trait in Franz Kafka’s novels are individuals trapped in the grasp of absurdist forces and unpredictable problems that complicate being a human and creates an existential dilemma. Isolation and alienation are major themes shown in the novels as well.
Gregor was put in the position by his family that minimized his self-esteem. He may have been providing all the money in the family, but he took no pride in his accomplishment. His family defines him by his ability and work that he does. Also, he is doing everything for his parents, to pay his debt to them. His life is so inclined in paying and serving his parents and felt that it was a necessity. With this expectation he has set up for himself, there is an open opportunity for weaknesses. And with weaknesses, there will be anxiety of failing. He also, locks his bed room door at home because he unconsciously knows that someday he will break and make a mistake. He thinks of himself as the engine that keeps his family running in the race of life.
As time progresses, he notices that he was not really close to any of his family members. Plus, being unable to provide for them, he becomes a burden and a curse, and they desire for Gregor to get rid of himself. This brings guilt into his mind, allowing his motives for isolation, punishment, and death in the end. Although, becoming a bug, it showed his inner talents that were hidden by his job and obligation. He may have been pleased with his job because the wealth his family had gained from it but does not desire in in his heart. Once, he is changed he is liberated from his conscious liking for the job and his unconscious thoughts about his life are revealed to him. This morph creates lots of time to think about himself and how they treat him. He still cares about his family even when they said they want to forget him and wished he left a long time ago, yet he still is caring about his family needs and wellbeing, even though they don’t care about him nor acknowledge that he is their son.
The story shows no desire that Gregory has accept for acceptance by society. He thinks about work first and others, rather than his needs to become recognized. Once he turns into a bug, he could no longer fulfil his devotion and was not even thought of. He notices that his family treats him like a guest rather than their child. This results in no one understanding him in his own flesh and in the bug form. His parents also see him as a tool. We will always be unconscious of our existence until something significant happens to change us dramatically, like from being the richest man in the world to a homeless slum who lives on the street.
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