In what ways is Gregor's metamorphosis symbolic in Kafka's The Metamorphosis?

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There is a great deal of symbolism in Kafka's The Metamorphosis. One example is the question of whether Gregor's transformation is symbolic of his sense of alienation? Is he a bug or is he simply feeling alienated from all those around him in that he is not appreciated?

The first line of the story begs the question of whether the story is a dream:

As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in hi bed into a gigantic insect.

There is supposed to be a great deal of symbolism in dreams, so Kafka may be suggesting, by introducing the possible presence of a dream, that this might simply be a…nightmare. Gregor works very hard and it is no surprise that he might worry in his sleep about the job that is so important to his family. The vision of turning into an insect could actually symbolize his desire not to have to return to a job he hates.

One of the themes of the story is alienation and self-sacrifice. With this is mind, it has been argued that Gregor is...

(The entire section contains 619 words.)

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