Kafka; Rilke; Akhmatova; Lorca; Xun; Mahfouz

1. What is the relationship between Gregor and his family? What clues in the story suggest that his relationship with his family, particularly his father, is unsatisfactory?

Gregor has two relationships with his family. One, he is still loved by his mother and sister and they all still care for him, even after finding out about his metamorphoses. His mom and sister try to help feed him, and even cover for Gregor when he can no longer continue to work. They all three love each other deeply but they no longer talk to him because of his metamorphoses. The second relationship is with his father. His father dislikes Gregor, and shows this by not working in the beginning of the story then when the father needs to work because Gregor can no longer, he beats Gregor. After his father learns about the metamorphoses he seems to be disgusted and disowns Gregor.

2. Discuss the central events in each of the three sections of The Metamorphoses. In what ways do these events suggest that the weakening of Gregor results in the strengthening of the family as a whole?

The first section of the story the family is very distant towards each other. Gregor works and provides for his whole family while his father comes across as not being able to work. Gregor then awakes to find that he has transformed into a bug, and really reflects on the life that he has due to his family and work.

The second section of the story goes on to tell us how Gregor slowly can no longer take care of himself. His mom and sister start to help Gregor by feeding him, but keep their distance. They don’t talk to him and his father has practically disowned him from disgust.

The third section of the story Gregor is injured by his dad throwing an apple at him. Gregor overhears one night how the family is starting to change their lifestyles to support themselves without Gregor. Gregor is devastated by this and passes away because of this.

3. How effective do you find Akhmatova’s Requiem as a political protest? Requiem was not published until well after the purges were over and Stalin was dead; is it, then, totally lacking in influence?

Akhmatov’as Requiem, in my opinion, would have been very effective if it had been published during the purges and while Stalin was in rule. Instead of just being a complicated statement about politics, she was able to create a picture in your head about exactly what she was talking about with living under tyranny and the hardships about war.

4. How should we interpret the famous command at the end of Archaic Torso of Apollo?

The last line in the poem pretty much sets the tone for the poem after the finish reading it. It tells us that we must change our lives. Simple as that haha. The poem to mean meant that you should take in the bigger picture and really rethink your motives in life and really make sure that you are doing the right thing.

One thought on “Kafka; Rilke; Akhmatova; Lorca; Xun; Mahfouz

  1. emrickrachel

    I like your comment that Akhmatova crated a picture for her readers. This makes it much easier for people to visualize the sufferings she endured and that they also endured, whether they realized it o not.

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