Was the insect Gregor turned into in The Metamorphosis a spider or a grasshopper?

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alexb2's profile pic

Posted on

I think it's definitely some sort of beetle. I wonder what type of beetles are most common in Prague?

grlucas's profile pic

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Neither spider, grasshopper (?), nor cockroach. How about a dung beetle? This has lovely figurative connotations as well and seems the most apt given Kafka's limited description.

brendawm's profile pic

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I've read this story many times throughout high school and college, and I am almost certain that at no time was the specific insect ever named; however, I am certain that it was not as spider, as that is an arachnid.  I will say this, though, I do remember a brilliant college professor and a lengthy discussion that seemed to lean toward the idea of a cockroach, simply based on the author's description.  If I had to choose one, I would go with that.

kdanuelle's profile pic

Posted on

While reading the story I pictured him to be an above average cockroach. However, the maid did call for him as a dung beetle. So now I assume since she had seen him she knew what type of insect he was.

theresa-diaz's profile pic

Posted on

The author seemed to keep the description vague and never specified an insect in particular to leave it up to the reader's imagination and own conclusion.  He could of easily began his story with, "One morning, as Gregor Samsa was waking up from anxious dreams, he discovered that in bed he had been changed into a cockroach."  However he used the term a monstrous verminous bug, mentioned a hard shell and tiny legs.  The reader is simply left to picture a giant general insect in his mind, trying to live the life Gregor Samsa once had.

thy's profile pic

Posted on

while i was reading the book i had that same question and by the detiles that the book give it was realy hard to tell. but later my teacher told me that he had turned into a cockroach.

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