The Metamorphosis:A surreal tale of the Fall of Man


  • Insha Qayoom Shah M.A. English Literature,Department of English University of Kashmir Srinagar,Jammu and Kashmir,India


Franz Kafka's celebrated novella The Metamorphosis continues to baffle interpreters ever since it was published in 1915. The aim of this study is to trace subtle connections between Kafka's protagonists and the biblical concept of the Fall of Man. The paper intends, through cross-referencing from various works on Kafka and his stories, to look beyond the conventional approaches toward Kafka's stories, in which most of the interpreters have drawn parallels between Kafka's characters and his own troubled childhood especially his estranged relationship with his father. The following paper, however, tries to transcend those traditions by viewing The Metamorphosis in the light of guilt, punishment and the redemption. Also, the deeper meanings of the first line in which Gregor transforms into an "insect" seem lost in the translation. The whole idea of punishment, rejection and isolation of Gregor rests on the real meaning of ungeheueresUngeziefer. It's been translated as "insect", "bug" or "dung beetle". The paper aims at deciphering the subtleties involved in Kafka's use of ungeheueresUngeziefer. While peeping into Kafka's theological predilections, the objective is not to retrieve a theologian out of an artist but to discover the real nature of Kafka's characters that, to me, seem experiential rather than representational. The Metamorphosis, since it came to Kafka while working on another novel, is, therefore, more of an inner experience than a representative idea weaved through literary craft.


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How to Cite

Shah, I. Q. (2021). The Metamorphosis:A surreal tale of the Fall of Man. SMART MOVES JOURNAL IJELLH, 8. Retrieved from