Kindle Book Title: “Die Verwandlung” (“The Metamorphosis”)
Author: Franz Kafka
Rating: 4.5 of 5 Stars
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A Bird’s Eye View
About the Storyteller:
Name: Franz Kafka (3 July 1883 – 3 June 1924)
Origin: German-Speaking Bohemian
Birth Place: Prague, Czech Republic
Date of Birth: 3rd July 1883
Writing Genre: Novelist and Short-Story Writer
Franz Kafka as a thinking person was exceptional and a wonderful person to get to know. I would have enjoyed hanging out with him in the afternoon, having a lazy conversation over tea about his thoughts on storyline and plot.
My parents had this tradition of tea consumption. We took our tea in the morning for kick-start of the day and in the late afternoon while catching up with each other’s day. This was the time when dialogues and conversation happen.
In the tea format we would explore books, shows, critique of events, rare topic like politics, plain entertaining the visitors, and maybe all those movies get analyzed, argued, and dry-washed out in the open.
So, there were many a time when I would have happily invited the writers over during our family’s afternoon tea and nibbles. That way I would have preferred Ruskin Bond, R K Narayana, Seth Godin, Robin Sharma, my best Valmiki of Valmiki’ Ramayana, maybe Veda Vyasa too. Of course, who could forget Mr. Pai of Amar Chitra Katha.
Our tradition of Afternoon Tea with Nibbles meant to give space to expression of thoughts about all fashion of things. So, when I read Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka, I felt all those afternoons of conversation on topics that were forbidden due to unfamiliarity of the emotional outcome were opened in my mind for discussion.
The Story in a Nutshell
There is not much in the story itself. If you want to summarize it, then it would go like this – a man wakes up finds himself transformed and the family comes to terms and accepts for a while and eventually the transformed man dies setting free his family.
You could generally see it so and let it be. But if you are like me reading between lines, reading above the lines and below the lines, then I think you would be quietly caught in the dilemma as to what was it all about.
The multiple level and layers of the story are so breath-taking that the beauty of the work needs to be savored with no rush. While remaining with the events in the house of the Samsa’s move slowly, but none the less, the ground of intellectualism covered is tremendous in that short novella.
My Likes and Dislikes
I am an art movie fanatic and I love watching movie’s whose plot do not go anywhere in particular. Somehow visual media opens planes of understanding much quicker than the other medium. The Visual media are a little hard for me because I prefer to create my own visuals in my head. So, reading for me, allows to visualise the story with ease.
While reading this novella I felt many a times as if I were forcibly bound and left gasping for breath. The hero is still thinking as a human when he has become vermin and he felt a weird mix of not being on the side of humanity. Did he think so, because he was vermin or being human was close to being a pestilence?
That set my thinking head in such confusion that I had to read a lighter book to get out of the confusion get back to the presence of higher thought process. At one point, I sighed with relief that the hero died and put an end to the whole thing to set the family free.
I think the story narration was done with a specific aim and the creation of a specific emotional outcome. In this world of rushing to get things done and earning the next paycheck life is kind of lost and never regained.
Almost like life is a collection of strife that does not get solved at all. There is an altered way of living once one system fails and the whole understanding undergoes a change. I liked the sister’s role since she takes the strong repercussion from her brother’s state of well-being.
Image Source: Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka