Kafka's The Death Of Ivan Samsa Analysis

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The Death of Ivan Ilych…and Gregor Samsa Tolstoy’s The Death of Ivan Ilych and Kafka’s The Metamorphosis share major similarities. Aside from some thematic similarities the main characters from each story, Ivan Ilych and Gregor Samsa, share many traits. One of these traits is that they are both terribly unexceptional. Also, both of their main focus is their work life. Another is the obvious fact that both men are dying throughout their stories. While on their deathbed’s they both face severe loneliness due mainly to their lack of focus on relationships throughout their lives. Ivan Ilych and Gregor Samsa share key traits and experiences, however, within these parallels they are distinctly different. Ivan Ilych is an especially normal man. …show more content…
Ivan 's life begins its slow descent on the day of his accident. One day, as he is showing a worker how he wants the drapes hung, he missteps and knocks his side on the knob of a window frame. This accident is seemingly harmless, yet it will claim his life. Ivan is well and actually lives some of the most pleasant times of his life until he starts experiencing worsening pain in his side. Eventually he realizes something serious is going on. It is at this point that he begins to feel alienated from everyone in his life; he feels as if no one understands him, which is because no one in his family really cares to understand him. Throughout the course of his time on his deathbed, Ivan begins to wonder if he lived a worth while life, “‘Maybe I did not live as I ought to have done, ' it suddenly occurred to him. 'But how could that be, when I did everything properly? ' he replied, and immediately dismissed from his mind this, the sole solution of all the riddles of life and death, as something quite impossible.” (657) This quote occurs in the midst of a war Ivan is having within himself, that ends with him attempting to put the idea away all together. After much suffering, Ivan spends the last three days of his life screaming in agony. During these days he is having a sort of dream of being shoved into a black sack. This black sack itself represents death, which Ivan fears horribly. Ivan’s attempt to justify his life to himself or to God holds him back from peace and causes him terrible pain, “He was hindered from getting into it by his conviction that his life had been a good one." (661) Suddenly, Ivan is struck in the chest by some unknown force and breaks through the black sack into light. As this happens he has a sudden revelation and realizes that he did not live his life right. He also feels that he can still fix things before he dies. After experiencing great pity for his

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