Franz Kafka's "Metamorphosis" is brilliantly daring storytelling. The main character may indeed be a "monstrous vermin" right from the start, but as the story progresses and his struggle is described in detail, it is difficult not to take pity on him (etext found
establish the validity of something, as by an example, explanation or experiment
The light in the living room was turned off only late at night, and now it was easy to
establish that his parents and his sister had stayed awake all this time, for one could hear clearly as all three moved away on tiptoe.
a possibility due to a favorable combination of circumstances
Already early in the morning (it was still almost night) Gregor had an
opportunity to test the power of the decisions he had just made, for his sister, almost fully dressed, opened the door from the hall into his room and looked eagerly inside.
If she did not do it on her own, he would sooner starve to death than call her attention to the fact, although he had a really powerful
urge to move beyond the couch, throw himself at his sister's feet, and beg her for something or other good to eat.
And out of her
delicacy of feeling, since she knew that Gregor would not eat in front of her, she went away very quickly and even turned the key in the lock, so that Gregor could now observe that he could make himself as comfortable as he wished.
Since he was not comprehensible, no one, not even his sister, thought that he might be able to understand others, and thus, when his sister was in her room, he had to be content with listening now and then to her sighs and
invocations to the saints.
Only the sister had remained still close to Gregor, and it was his secret plan to send her (in contrast to Gregor she loved music very much and knew how to play the violin charmingly) next year to the conservatory, regardless of the great expense which that must
necessitate and which would be made up in other ways.
marked by simplicity; having a humble opinion of yourself
Should his sister earn money, a girl who was still a seventeen-year-old child, whose earlier life style had been so very delightful that it had consisted of dressing herself nicely, sleeping in late, helping around the house, taking part in a few
modest enjoyments and, above all, playing the violin?
As soon as she entered, she ran straight to the window, without taking the time to shut the door (in spite of the fact that she was otherwise very considerate in sparing anyone the sight of Gregor's room), and yanked the window open with eager hands, as if she was almost
suffocating, and remained for a while by the window breathing deeply, even when it was still so cold.
However, now both his father and his mother often waited in front of Gregor's door while his sister cleaned up inside, and as soon as she came out she had to explain in detail how things looked in the room, what Gregor had eaten, how he had behaved this time, and whether perhaps a slight improvement was
Was he really eager to let the warm room, comfortably furnished with pieces he had
inherited, be turned into a cavern in which he would, of course, then be able to crawl about in all directions without disturbance, but at the same time with a quick and complete forgetting of his human past as well?
And so she did not let herself be
dissuaded from her decision by her mother, who in this room seemed uncertain of herself in her sheer agitation and soon kept quiet, helping his sister with all her energy to get the chest of drawers out of the room.
They were cleaning out his room, taking away from him everything he
cherished; they had already dragged out the chest of drawers in which the fret saw and other tools were kept, and they were now loosening the writing desk which was fixed tight to the floor, the desk on which he, as a business student, a school student, indeed even as an elementary school student, had written out his assignments.
extraordinarily large in size or extent or amount or power or degree
She walked to the side, caught sight of the
enormous brown splotch on the flowered wallpaper, and, before she became truly aware that what she was looking at was Gregor, screamed out in a high pitched raw voice "Oh God, oh God" and fell with outstretched arms, as if she was surrendering everything, down onto the couch and lay there motionless.