The World of Gregor Samsa: A Daseinsanalytic Interpretation of Kafka’s The Metamorphosis

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The article, a Daseinsanalytic contribution to the reading of literary works, will focus on the examination of the life-world of Gregor Samsa, the protagonist in Franz Kafka’s novella The Metamorphosis, who, devoting his life to the financial support of his family, finds himself, in a problematic situation, as an insect-like creature. It addresses four fundamental deficiencies evident in this case, regarding human sense of self, existential temporality, lived spatiality, and embodiment, as the description of the character’s experiences reveals. The manner in which Gregor conducts his life marks a pathological world-openness of a not-owned human existence. However, according to the Daseinsanalytic point of view, the possibility of being saved, contrary to the sad ending of the story, could be opened up for him through a futural projection with reference to the covered potentials in his life.

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