The Limits of Sympathy Introducing Grete Samsa and Gregor Samsa in the Novel, “The Metamorphosis” By Franz Kafka Gregor Samsa is the main character in the novel and works as a traveling salesman to provide the daily bread his sister Grete Samsa and his parents…
Notably, Gregor's father hates him, beats him, throws apples at him, and reprimands him to his room. Nevertheless, Gregor Samsa continued to struggle in adapting to his new physical form until he dies. Grete Samsa is Gregor Samsa’s younger sister who takes up the responsibility of taking care of Gregor after the metamorphosis. In the beginning, the two had a close relationship where Grete sympathizes with him and voluntarily feeds him and cleans his room (Johnston 24-28). In addition, Grete would play violin outside Gregor’s room to console him. She would also dream of going to the conservatory. She also assumed the role of providing for the family after Gregor's transformation where she started working as a salesgirl. However, her sympathies faded with time as the burden became too much for her (Johnston 44-45). As a result she stopped cleaning Gregor’s room and even suggested to her parents that they get rid of Gregor. We can see the Samsa’s parents being more concerned about Grete’s well-being at the expense of Gregor’s condition. Ultimately, the unsympathetic nature of Grete and her parents led to Gregor’s death (Johnston 54-56). How the Character’s Past Shaped Grete Samsa and Gregor Samsa Life Notably, Gregor’s boss never accepts any excuses or explanation from the employees regardless of how hard they worked (Johnston 3). This prompted Gregor to work extra harder, observe time, and persevere in his challenging work as a travelling salesman (Johnston 8-9). Indeed, Gregor was never late for work. As a result, the incapability to provide for his family disturbed him so much. We can also establish that Grete and Gregor have always had a passion for each other and this led them to developing concern for each other in their lives. Gregor had huge dreams foe her sister and the incapability to achieve them weakened him (Johnston 28). Additionally, Grete’s past shaped her life and that of Gregor as she gets concerned of Gregor’s lateness in waking up (Johnston 4), removes the furniture from Gregor’s room to create some space for him, feeds and takes care of him. Moreover, Gregor’s father was always harsh to him (Johnston 19). As a result, Mr. Samsa hated Gregor, beat him, and threw apples at him after the transformation. Unfortunately, one of the apples got stuck in a sensitive part in his back for about a month which infected him and paralyzed his movements for life (Johnston 39-40). We can also see Mr. Samsa agreeing to get rid of Gregor a situation which terminates Gregor’s life. On the other hand, having been the youngest child, Grete was not used to challenges and lived a happy life. As a result, she easily gave up on taking care of Gregor and suggests that his family gets rid of him (Johnston 52). Ultimately this led to Gregor’s death. In his past, Gregor avoided conflict with anyone and worked hard to achieve what he had. This motivated him to continue struggling to adapt to his new physical form which he became comfortable with after some time. What the Relationships of Grete and Gregor Reveal About Characteristics The relationship between Grete and Gregor reveal the kind nature of Gregor and Grete as they sought to take care of one another. They also reveal the loving and caring characteristics of the two characters (Johnston 10). Moreover, the relationships reveal the hardworking nature of Gregor as he sought to support his family especially Grete (Johnston 28-29). ...
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