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?
The relationship between Gregor and his family is one that I think is seen more and more in today’s society. Today there are many greedy people and to most of them it doesn’t matter what relationship they have with people they will never really give them the time of day. What I gathered from the story was that he brought everything back to the table. He was the moneymaker in the family; he was the provider. Gregor never seemed to get around to spend quality time with his family, which made the relationships grow weak especially the relationship between him and his father. When things were on the down slid for Gregor, his father didn’t support him let alone even visit him. It is not only his father that doesn’t have a great relationship with him it is also his mother, they didn’t see eye to eye yet there bonded better than him and his father. When Gregors was in the down days of a beetle his sister was the most caring and gave him the most respect. I feel that him and his sister although they didn’t really communicate they had the best relationship. I think that this all comes from the foolishness and selfishness of the whole family because if they all tried a little bit harder to be thankful and respected each other a bit more they would have a stronger bond as a family.
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?
Like I said above, Gregor was the provider for the family, he put the bread on the table as they say. The family seriously relied on him and his great supply of money, food, and shelter. Then things go down hill for Gregor. He turns into a roach. His family starts to betray him and forget all the great things he had done for them in their lives.
Gregors change into a human was looking slim and the family shows little desire to even want him around any longer. His sister was the only one that seemed to care but cared only enough to feed her and didn’t try to converse with him. Of course the family begins to fall apart more and more because their provider his lost his abilities to do his work. This is when family really hits Gregor the hardest.
In the last part of the story, Gregor had enough of the hatred and ran into the room that the rest of the family was in and startled them. The family was not to fond of him doing that and had a deep conversation about their health and well being with the roach in the house. In the end it turns out that the family kicks him out of his own house and he is left to die. For the family they are finally able to be peaceful without thinking about the terrible roach they had in their house.
3. Bow 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?
Akhmotatova’s poem was a rather interesting way of describing the life of women in that era. This poem seems to speak for all women. I find this poem was pretty effective as a protest as it helped her push through all the bad times with the war and prison. I think that this poem is more of a motivational piece to me because of the perseverance that she showed throughout the war to continue to be a Great Russian poet.
4. How should we interpret the famous command at the end of Archaic Torso of Apollo?
I think this poem is summed up in the end very well with just one verse. “You must change your life.’ (908) What this should be interpreted to is that if one wants to be heard, if one wants to make a difference in life they must change the way the act, feel and behave as a human. If you want to be bright you must act it. You must be the difference, because if you try to do the same things other individuals are doing you will just be average. If you want to stand out you must make the correct changes.
I found everything you said to be interesting. I like how you compared the family in the story about Gregor to a modern day family. I also agree with you that the quote in the Apollo poem should be interpreted for exactly what it is. I also think that change only comes from people deciding they must change. I think that it is really important for people to constantly change in one way or another, it’s what sparks ideas for the future.