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Siddhartha and The Metamorphosis

            When comparing Siddhartha, by Hermann Hesse and The Metamorphosis, by Franz Kafka, both novels display protagonists who embark on a journey in search of themselves, displayed through the significant names of the characters. The Metamorphasis contains the name Gregor Samsa, which not only relates to the author, Franz Kafka, but to societies influence in his self-realization. Siddhartha on the other hand, utilizes names from Hindu deities and other important characters throughout the Hindu and Buddhist holy scriptures showing his captivation into society's materialistic world. The Metamorphosis and Siddhartha both utilize the names of characters in connection with famous people and how society influence the protagonists to find their purpose in life. .
             TOPIC SENTENCE!!! The protagonist's last name, Samsa, reflects a cryptogram for the author's last name, Kafka. This comparison early on suggests the idea that the journey of the protagonist throughout the novel, is at least in part, autobiographical. Gregor Samsa's transformation into a vermin isolates him from the rest of society and his family. Similarly, Kafka's sense of alienation was formed early on due to his separation from the Czech majority and German population along with his dreamy nature and interest in literature, which his father always held in distain.1 Furthermore, Gregor Samsa's family is portrayed as a parallel with Kafka's family. Being the only son in the family, Gregor in is the only one "[getting] the money together to pay off [his] parents" debt to [the clerk]" (Kafka,4). In the beginning, his father is a dependable person yet soon changes into a dominant father who subjugates his son to his will through authority and strength when Gregor notes that "the noise in his rear sounded no longer like the voice of one single father" and "above the high stiff collar of the jacket his heavy chin protruded; under his bushy eyebrows his black eyes darted bright, piercing glances- (Kafka, 38).

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