The Metamorphosis

What self and other in Kafka's "The Metamorphosis story

“the Other” is a complex one, and it is hard to pinpoint exactly what it means. Does it have any meaning at all? The question of who the other is might seem useless, because in some way we are all “others” to someone, and everyone else is “other” to us. We can never fully know the other, and even if we strive to do so, “the other” is constantly changing. At the same time, there can be no “I” without a relation to and a concept of the other. We need something that in some degree is different from ourselves to actually constitute a self. Still, how do we bring meaning into a term that refers to absolutely everyone?

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Well now - this is a question which reflects the idea that we are different from everyone else and we can only know someone in the context of the moment. When Gregor is the traveling salesman, then his family (his closest others) act a particular way and that is the only way he knows them. As he changes, each one changes and he learns new information about his others including his parents, his sister Grete and the boarders that the family eventually takes in. In the end, Grete, like everyone else deserts him because their perception of Gregor is so skewed that they truly do not see him as the brother and son anymore; in fact, he cannot communicate with them and so he cannot work with them as "others" anymore.