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Entrapped Women

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Entrapped Women World Literature Assignment I April 18, 2008 In both The Stranger by Albert Camus and The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka, the main female characters play a large role in the story. In The Stranger Marie is in love with Meursault. When Meursault refuses to respond to Marie's love she gets upset. In The Metamorphosis Grete is the sister of Gregor. When Gregor turns into a vermin it is Grete's responsibility to take care of him. Both Marie and Grete are enslaved to their relationship with their male companions; which ultimately leads to their dissatisfaction. Relationships, of any type, cause the people involved to become enslaved. Marie and Grete were both in a relationship. In The Metamorphosis Grete is in a brother - sister relationship with Gregor and because of their relationship, Grete takes care of her brother. One day Gregor decides to try not to cause his sister "unpleasantness"1 and hides under the couch and watches her as she enters the room. She didn't catch sight of him at once, but when she noticed him under the couch - God, he had to be somewhere, he couldn't have flown away - she received such a fright that, unable to control herself, she slammed the door again from outside. ...read more.


I said it didn't make any difference to me and that we could if she wanted to. Then she wanted to know if I loved her. I answered the same way I had the last time, that it didn't mean anything but that I probably didn't lover her4. In this passage, Marie is desperately trying to understand how Meursault feels about their relationship. His failure to respond with any real passion shows a lack of communication. Grete also experiences a lack of communication with Gregor in The Metamorphosis. After Gregor transformed into a vermin, Grete, Gregor's sister, immediately took the role of caring for the insect. Gregor, after eating the food that his sister had left for him, watched his sister clean up after him. In between brief bouts of asphyxia, with slightly protruding eyes he watched his unsuspecting sister sweep together with a broom not only the leftovers of what he had eaten, but even the foods Gregor hadn't touched at all, as if those too were no longer usable; and he saw how she hastily dropped everything into a bucket which she closed with a wooden cover, and then carried everything out. She had scarcely turned around when Gregor moved out from under the couch, stretched and let himself expand5. ...read more.


If Marie had not been having a relationship with Meursault, she would never have had to experience the court case and therefore never had to have felt the anger towards the lawyer. It was because of Meursault that she was upset. Both Grete and Marie felt frustration that was caused by their relationships. Although Marie's outbreak was not directed at Meursault, her anger was still indirectly caused by him. Grete's frustration was directed to Gregor and caused by him. The resentment that the two women felt led to their eventual dissatisfaction. Both women are enslaved to their relationship with their male counterparts which leads to their unhappiness. Marie is trapped in a relationship with Meursault that has caused her to become isolated, resentful and enslaved to Meursault's happiness. Grete is alone, angry and a slave to her relationship with her brother, Gregor. Both these women could have been strong women had they not been tied down by the men in their lives. They have become slaves to the whims of their male counterparts and it has caused the two women grief, pain and anger. Their relationships with the men in their lives led them to a life full of dissatisfaction. 1 Kafka , Franz. The Metamorphosis. pg 26. Mineola, N.Y.: Dover Publications, Inc., 1996. 2 Kafka 27 3 Camus, Albert. The Stranger. pg 47. New York: Vintage International, 1988. 4 Camus 41 5 Kafka 27 6 Kafka 36 7 Camus 94 ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

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