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Mythological Approach to The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka

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Sarah Forsythe

on 30 September 2013

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Transcript of Mythological Approach to The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka

Mythological Approach to
The Metamorphosis
by Franz Kafka

Archetypes - Gregor & Grete
The Tragic Hero
“But Gregor had absolutely no intention of opening the door and complimented himself instead on the precaution he had adopted from his business trips, of locking all the doors during the night even at home” (6).
Archetypes- Family
“The greatest immediate improvement in their situation would come easily, of course, from a change in apartments; they would now take a smaller and cheaper apartment, but one better situated and in every way simpler to manage than the old one, which Gregor had picked for them” (55).
Archetypes- Atmosphere
Haven Vs. Wilderness
“…and Gregor hissed loudly with rage because it did not occur to any of them to close the door and spare him such a scene and a row” (42).
Affliations to the Metamorphosis's Archetypes
Grete resembles Mother Mary to Gregor as she is his caregiver for a large portion of the novel
Odysseus' Unhealable Wound
By: Alyssa Armstrong, Sarah Forsythe, Kristen Lin, James Hart
Mythological Approach
Emphasizes the recurrent universal patterns
Artist’s common humanity can be explored
Traces how the individual imagination uses symbols
Links individual text to a broader context
Myths of Different Societies:
Theme of birth
Mother and father
Suffering as a punishment
Evolution of Earth
Loss of innocence after sin
Works Cited
James Hart - Mythology
Kristen Lin - Archetypes
Sarah Forsythe - Design
Alyssa Armstrong - Media

The Unhealable Wound
“Gregor’s serious wound, from which he suffered for over a month – the apple remained imbedded in his flesh as a visible souvenir since no one dared to remove it…” (38).

“But now both of them, his father and his mother, often waited outside Gregor’s room while his sister straightened it up, and as soon as she came out she had to tell them in great detail how the room looked, what Gregor had eaten, how he had behaved this time, and whether he had perhaps shown a little improvement” (29).

The Outcast
“Instead he drove Gregor on, as if there were no obstacle, with exceptional loudness…from behind, his father gave him a hard shove, which was truly his salvation, and bleeding profusely, he flew far into his room. The door was slammed shut with the cane, then at last everything was quiet” (19).
Gray - black & white:
“…he might have believed that he was looking out of his window into a desert where the gray sky and the gray earth were indistinguishably fused” (28).
Water Vs. Desert
“…the rain was still coming down, but only in large, separately visible drops that were also pelting the ground literally one at a time” (15).

“…he might have believed that he was looking out of his window into a desert…” (28).
Kafka's The Metamorphosis?
Creature of Nightmare
“…on the other hand at the sight of the spilling coffee he could not resist snapping his jaws several times in the air. At this his mother screamed once more, fled from the table, and fell into the arms of his father, who came rushing up to her” (17).
The Fall
“When Gregor Samsa woke up one morning from unsettling dreams, he found himself changed in his bed into a monstrous vermin…It was no dream” (3).
The Scapegoat
“‘If it were Gregor, he would have realized long ago that it isn’t possible for human beings to live with such a creature, and he would have gone away of his own free will…But as things are, this animal persecutes us, drives the roomers away, obviously wants to occupy the whole apartment and for us to sleep in the gutter’” (49).
The Initiation
“While they were talking in this vein, it occurred almost simultaneously to Mr. And Mrs. Samsa, as they watched their daughter getting livelier and livelier, that lately, in spite of all the troubles which had turned her cheeks pale, she had blossomed into a good-looking, shapely girl…And it was like a confirmation of their new dreams and good intentions when at the end of the ride their daughter got up first and stretched her young body” (55).
The Number 3 & 4
Athena and Arachne
“In the foyer all three took their hats from the coat rack, pulled their canes from the umbrella stand, bowed silently, and left the apartment” (53).
Death and Rebirth
“Then all three of them left the apartment together, something they had not done in months, and took the trolley into the open country on the outskirts of the city” (55).
The Crucifixion of Jesus Christ
The Number 3
Ra the Sun God
Delahoyde,Michael. "Archetypal Criticism." NetTrekker. N.p., n.d. Web.
• An author who is familiar in critical literary approaches intend on informing students on what archetypal criticism, or mythological approach, to literature by use of definition and examples. This work aids in comprehending the critical approach assigned to assess the aspects of Kafka’s The Metamorphosis.

"hamartia." Britannica School. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 2013. Web. 21 Sep. 2013.
• The scholarly author, familiar in literature, intends on educating the meaning of hamartia to students using dictionary meaning and further defining the term. This work helps to expand how the qualities of what makes a tragic hero and what quality has made Gregor a tragic hero.

Shaw, Ian. "The Amarna Period and the Later New Kingdom (c.1352-1069BC)." The Oxford
History of Ancient Egypt. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2000. 266. The Oxford History of Ancient
Egypt. Web.
• The historical novel writer intends on informing a general audience on the history of ancient Egypt as well as its social and religious aspects. Using this work emphasizes how archetypes, such as death and rebirth, reoccur throughout history and reflects into literature.

The Passion of the Christ. Dir. Mel Gibson. Youtube. N.p., 22 Apr. 2011. Web.

Ulysses, When a Youth, Fights the Wild Boar and Gets His Wound in His Thigh. Digital image.
N.p., n.d. Web.

Virgin Mary. Digital image. Mary the Blessed Virgin. St. Mary Catholic Secondary School, n.d.

Franz Kafka hayvan öyküleri. Digital image. N.p., n.d. Web.

Arachne fell from being a mortal to a mere spider. She became a creature of nightmare much like Gregor and suffered as he did.
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