Title: The Metamorphosis
Author: Franz Kafka
Genre: Classics, Magic Realism
Blurb: Kafka begins his masterpiece, The Metamorphosis. It is the story of a young man who, transformed overnight into a giant beetle-like insect, becomes an object of disgrace to his family, an outsider in his own home, a quintessentially alienated man. A harrowing -- though absurdly comic -- meditation on human feelings of inadequacy, guilt, and isolation, The Metamorphosis has taken its place as one of the most widely read and influential works of twentieth-century fiction.
Me: Hello everyone! First, please let me apologize for not blogging for more than an entire month. That's INSANE. I'm so so sorry, but I haven't been able to do much anything lately because of school work and other things.
Why I made the decision to read this book for my 26 classics challenge I have NO clue. Actually, I do, it's because the book cover was both extremely revolting yet aesthetically pleasing at the same time. I also thought it would be good to read a classic that wasn't written in English initially, just for diversity. But still. It was not the most well-thought decision, for now I am just extremely confused.
Promise to self: I WILL READ THIS BOOK AGAIN WHEN THE TIME IS RIGHT. Because here is the problem: I don't understand it. There. I said it. EEK. My young reading mind is not sophisticated or experienced enough to fully embrace and discover everything that Kafka manages to address in this "short story". So Gregor wakes up and finds that he has turned into a cockroach-y animal. But the strange thing is, he seems rather unfazed by the whole situation. In fact, he worries about how his family will live, what his boss will say, but not how he will GET OUT OF THE SITUATION.
He has enough sense to stay in his room in fear of his family, and when they do see him, his mother faints. The mood of their house slowly sinks into a quiet, solemn family and he hides himself to spare his family from having to look at him. I don't want to spoil much, but it is very...interesting. The weird thing is through much of the story I was thinking, "Uh, okay...move on...when does this get really philosophical..uh..." until the very end. After I'd finished, that's when I was more in the mood of AHHH OMG AHHH OMG WHHATTT.
In the modern world, in Gregor's world, he is appreciated and loved mostly for his usefulness. He did not choose to become something monstrous by choice, but the people around him are indifferent to his feelings, because they think he is no longer a person. As time passes, even his sister who cares for him grows lazy and disconnects herself from him. It's a terrifying realization to see how truly alone someone may be.
People are discarded once they are once made into monsters. Perhaps this is Kafka's social commentary on the tyranny of rulers such as Hitler who purposefully make innocent people into monsters in others' eyes. In fact, it is so easy for people to adopt new workers, new lovers, new children to quickly fill the space, the space left by the creatures no one cares about. It is almost a demented circle of life.
Rating: 4 kisses! (I almost feel unqualified to rate this though)