Existentialism is specified as a contemporary philosophical movement worrying the value of one’s experience and responsibility. Its focus is the make on the personal reflections that these make on the individual, who is viewed as a totally free agent in a deterministic and relatively useless universe. Its philosophy is precise that, in a nutshell, advocates a diverse toolbox of reactions and services to the ‘existentialist attitude’; which, essentially, is what a specific feels when faced by the absurdity of life. Throughout humanity, rumination and self-proclaimed ‘supreme’ realities have actually assumed different kinds: poetry, faith, and many other doctrines and textual works.
In The Transformation, Franz Kafka tells the ramifications of a metamorphosis in which the subject and protagonist, a male called Gregor Samsa, is changed into a bug. Despite the novella’s literary methods and influences, the most popular being the way Kafka so nonchalantly describes such irregularity in his life, The Transformation is also hailed as a prime textual work of existentialism, the previously mentioned philosophical motion.
Both prior and subsequent to the improvement, Kafka depicts Gregor as a male who appears lost within himself, and lacking identity. The reminiscences of his past are neither sentimental nor poignant: his human life is seen to revolve entirely around insignificant matters. His social life pays the price from this, his failure to assert a concrete and consistent existence.
The degree of his absence of individuality is more exhibited by his response to the metamorphosis: discovering himself “changed in his bed into a massive insect” (Kafka, 296), he prioritizes work over all else, even in his recently related insect kind. Moreover, he worries since “the next train addressed 7 o’clock; to catch that he would require to rush like mad and his samples weren’t even packed up” (297 ). Gregor’s id is a gadget for communicating Kafka’s belief of an impersonal society where individualism is dramatically alleviated as a result of extreme materialism. Gregor, in the context of Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s Notes from Underground example, would be the ‘ant’ in the anthill– hence rendering his transformation ironically. Another dominant theme widespread throughout the novella is the absurd scenario Gregor is challenged by.
These ridiculous happenings (296-327) show the world as seen from the existentialist perspective: a world missing of a logical and detailed goal. Jean-Paul Sartre postulated that ‘every existing thing is born without reason, extends itself out of weak point, and dies by opportunity’. This meaninglessness is specifically what Gregor is victim to in the microcosm of society that Kafka generates: Gregor goes to pieces about, beleaguered by absurdity and helplessness, presumably since he is unaware of Nietzsche and Kierkegaard’s rather consoling conclusions that one must devise implying for one’s own presence ex nihilo. When again, Kafka makes use of a combination of plot and character to communicate his angst concerning an obviously meaningless existence.
Liberty– or rather the lack thereof– is another existentialist tenet that Kafka addresses. Gregor is illustrated as someone constrained by self-imposed problems, the most requiring being the role as the financial pillar of the household. Regardless of having the freedom to repudiate this role, Gregor rather pursues it with feverish ardor to the level that it becomes his ‘sole desire’ (310 ). Yet his harangue regarding his profession (297-298) reveals that this is not due to personal desire, but rather the belief that he must replace his father financially, no matter choice.
Gregor’s deception regarding a lack of choice contradicts what Kafka views as the fact: that liberty is common in spite of any ethical responsibilities we may be anticipated to follow, which the individual defines his or herself through one’s choices. A quasi-motto of existentialism created by Sartre, ‘existence precedes essence’. In conclusion, Kafka uses the fictional literary components he constructs to attend to the really non-fictional, existentialist elements of society and life. Comparable to Dostoyevsky’s Notes from Underground, it can be translated as both a rumination and tirade against impersonal communities, limitation of flexibility, and the absurdity of life.