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The Metamorphosis by Kafka (ebook)

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The Metamorphosis (German: Die Verwandlung) is a novella by Franz
Kafka, first published in 1915. It is often cited as one of the
seminal works of short fiction of the 20th century and is widely
studied in colleges and universities across the western world. The
story begins with a traveling salesman, Gregor Samsa, waking to find
himself transformed into an insect (see Lost in translation, below).

Gregor Samsa awakes one morning in his family's apartment to find
himself inexplicably transformed overnight into a gigantic
insect. Gregor does not immediately recoil from his insect form, but
instead chooses to lament his job by saying, "How am I going to get to
work?" and the general misery of the rainy weather outside. Indeed,
the narrative establishes the poor conditions as the cause of his
bed-ridden state. Gregor works as a traveling salesman, and, as it is
usual for traveling salesmen to move constantly from place to place,
he is accustomed to waking up in unfamiliar surroundings and various
circumstances. The true reality of his metamorphosis is complete when
he sees his many legs waving in the air. But from then on he resists
any conscious recognition regarding his change or the fact that a
change indeed happened—everything but the recognition of his
separation from the others. The problem Gregor has at the beginning of
the story is that his family and a messenger from his boss are
knocking at the door, concerned for him, and he's unable to flip off
his back onto the floor.