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A seemingly typical man wakes up one morning to discover that he has been transformed into a gigantic insect, and must deal with the depression over his new physical alteration, as well as the rejection of his family.
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"When Gregor Samsa woke up one morning from unsettling dreams, he found himself changed in his bed into a monstrous vermin." With this startling, bizarre, yet surprisingly funny first sentence, Kafka begins his masterpiece, The Metamorphosis. It is the story of a young man who, transformed overnight into a giant beetlelike insect, becomes an object of disgrace to his family, an outsider in his own home, a quintessentially alienated man. A harrowing -- though absurdly comic -- meditation on human feelings of inadequecy, guilt, and isolation, The Metamorphosis has taken its place as one of the mosst widely read and influential works of twentieth-century fiction. As W.H. Auden wrote, "Kafka is important to us because his predicament is the predicament of modern man."From the Back Cover:
Since his death in 1924, Kafka has come to be regarded as one of the greatest modern writers, one whose work brilliantly explores the anxiety, futility, and complexity of modern life. The precision and clarity of Kafka's style, its powerful symbolism, and his existential exploration of the human condition have given his work universal significance.
In addition to the title selection, considered by many critics Kafka's most perfect work, this collection includes "The Judgment," "In the Penal Colony," "A Country Doctor," and "A Report to an Academy." Stanley Appelbaum has provided excellent new English translation of the stories and a brief Note placing them within Kafka's oeuvre.
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