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The metamorphosis – Kafka notes

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Collin Hill

The metamorphosis – Kafka notes 1) The “Kafkaesque”  Refers to a situation that is nightmarish, bizarre, endlessly and pointlessly complex, and illogical. Other elements of the Kafkaesque include a sense of threat or menace, distortion of reality, and psychological disturbance. The individual in the “Kafkaesque” is diminished and derided by his or her superiors and surroundings and feels as sense of isolation and disconnectedness. 2) The Symbolist Novel a) The symbolism of Gregor’s “metamorphosis” (transformation)  physical transformation (man to beetle) (loss of dignity we suffer when we go to this state- loss importance) (beetle- crawls around on the ground, eats shit- how the place in the universe has changed) (speaks in a voice- no one understand, multiple vocality)  mental transformation (the place of human beings alters)  a lot of meanings, tothymbolizes what humans have become in the early 20 century world b) Symbolic Narrative; Kafka’s “supporting” symbolism (infused with various symbols that support the central idea) (worked to hard to support his family, overwhelmed with the institutions surrounding him) th 3) Expressionism (radical departure from that 19 century world) A collection of other „isms‟:  Modernism is a broad and inclusive terms that signifies numerous competing literary and cultural movements and aesthetics  Symbolism, Vorticism, Expressionism, Cubism, Feminism, impressionism, Post impressionism, Dadaism, Surrealism, Futurism, Imagism. A) Historical Expressionism  A movement in the visual arts of literature that began in Germany around 1910- 1945  After 1945, expression evolved into many different forms; abstract expressionism, lyrical abstraction, neo- expressionism, etc.  Expressionist characteristics continue to appear in much contemporary art. B) The Expressionist Aesthetic:  replacement of realism with powerful, exaggerating emotion and thought  expression of a profoundly troubled society in a nightmarish world  image of the individual alone in an industrial, mechanized society.  dramatic, outward display of internal states (outward display of Gregor‟s emotional state inside)(external experience alters to depict the
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