In this essay, I am going to examine Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. When the novel was written in 1817, the world was unbalanced. In England the industrial revolution was about to start. This meant that hundreds of workers were out of work. I think that Mary Shelley was trying to give the message that people should not be treated unfairly because of his different appearance. When the book was written Mary Shelley was only 21. Her mother, Mary Wollstonecraft was also a writer, which was considered to be unusual at that time.
Mary Wollstonecraft heavily influenced Mary Shelley as a writer. When Mary Shelley wrote the novel, she was staying in Lake Geneva. In the novel all the characters and their home is located in Geneva. The monster as a character develops many skills after he is re-born. After the monster is born it can not stand up. This shows us a weakness. At this point Victor is portrayed as the master and the monster the slave. The monster changes throughout the novel. This is also shown in his ability to develop his speech. The monster took months to develop this skill.
He did this by watching and listening to the De lacy family who live in a quiet cottage in the countryside. The monster observes them and copies them to develop this skill. During his time with the De lacys, he also develops his reading skills. He did this by finding three books, which belonged to Victor. The books included a diary of Victor’s experiment. Slowly he developed this skill of reading and found out about his creator Our feelings towards the monster change dramatically during the novel. At first when the monster leaves Victors lab, the public hates him.
He is severally abused by the society. He is then forced to hide in the forest. During this sequence of events we feel sympathy for the monster ecause of the way he is treated. However, our feeling quickly change when he meets the De lacy family. The reader feels like the monster has a home even though he does not have his own home as he lives in the barn. Later in the novel, our feelings do change when he kills Elizabeth and Victor’s little son. The reader’s opinion changes from good to bad during the novel.
The monster’s actions affect our opinions. A key element was the murder of Elizabeth and her son. This is true because we think the monster is an evil killing machine that has to be stopped. This opinion is reversed later in he novel when he asks for a partner. The reader feels sympathy and believes the monster is lonely. The setting of the novel affects the characters and the scenes at which are set. In chapter 12, the monster is telling his feelings about life to Victor. At this point, the weather changes to become cloudy, stormy and rainy.
This tells us that the scene is negative and that the monster will proclaim his feelings about being bought into this cruel world. Later in the play, Victor had been chasing the monster in revenge for his losses. This scene is set in the cold arctic. This makes the reader eel sympathy and that isolation is a problem for the monster. It also tells the reader that something bad is about to happen. However, later in the novel we do feel happy for the monster when he is living with the De Lacy family. The De Lacy family are happy because the monster has helped them with all the chores around the farm.
During this time, the weather is bright sunshine and the monster feels happy. This feeling is renewed when the monster completes his weekly deed of the chores that have to be done in the farm. The plot of the novel is very well told and it contains twists and urns at every corner. The plot refines the storyline as when the monster is chasing Victor. When the monster is chasing Victor, he appears at different times to create cliffhangers. This in the scene when Victor swears to kill the monster for the murders.
When the monster appears, there is lots of tension created which disrupts the atmosphere and the plot. The themes of isolation and loneliness in ‘Frankenstein’ affect the novel. Discovery and desire affect the novel because Victor is prepared to go to all lengths to make the monster. Victor is driven by the fact of making the monster. Frankenstein is driven to the extreme by his unwilling desire. This affects the reader because it provides entertainment for the reader as Frankenstein struggles to make the monster. The ambition shown in the novel affects the reader.
This is the ambition of the Frankenstein and Walton. Both men are attempting to become world-renowned scientists by making the find of the century. By trying to find the greatest discovery of all time, they could have almost killed themselves. This was seen when Frankenstein almost got killed by the monster just after the monster was born. The revenge factor in the novel brings the true side of Victor as he is torn between staying or following the monster to the end of the world. However, at the end Frankenstein becomes as evil as the monster.
This happens when Victor is chasing the monster. He becomes evil because of his revenge factor. The symbolism in the novel is evident. Imprisonment affects the monster as he is trapped in the De lace family. The monster is trapped in the De Lacy’s home because he is scared of how they will react if they find out he is living there. The readers also are influenced by this as they eel sympathy for the monster because he cannot go out and meet people. The reader later also feels happy for the monster when he meets the grandfather of the family.
The monster also symbolises our own inner insecurity. This is the way that we treat people. The monster symbolises this because the monster treats people badly after his mistreatment. The monster treats people unlawfully because he feels he can. The monster feels like this because of how the public rejected him as part of their society. Mary Shelley uses powerful words to influence our thoughts and ideas owards the monster. An example of this is “begone” “Abhorred devil”. These quotes show me how society and Victor feel towards the monster and his actions.
The readers are influenced by these powerful words because they show very powerful thoughts towards the monster. Through Mary Shelley describes the monster as “it” this shows that Victor thinks that monster is not human, it does not have a right to live, even though Victor bought the beast in to the world. This shows the reader that the monster is unwanted. From the moment the monster escapes after being born, the reader nows that Victor is determined to scrap his creation despite spending years designing the monster.
Each character in Frankenstein tells his own different side of the story. In chapter 10, the monster talks about his feelings at being rejected by society. To the reader this gives a different angle and perspective on the monsters feelings to being bought in to this cruel world. “I longed to obtain food and shelter … I often spent the whole day searching in vain for a few acorns” This makes the reader feel sympathy for the monster when uses his speech for when he fells hungry. He uses powerful words as shown in the previous quote.
This means the reader feel sympathy, as he cannot find the bare essentials of life, such as food and shelter. Victor then makes his own moving speech about how he feels it was a mistake to bring the monster in to the world. “You reporch me with your creation … Do you dare approach me”. The monster later speaks about his love and hope that he was created with. “My soul glowed with love and humanity” This shows the reader that the monster had a kind side but he was never able to show it. This was after the world wreaked this in how they treated him.
In conclusion, Mary Shelley successfully describes the monster, from when he is born to his final words with Captain Walton. The monster is also a successful literary character in the way the monster develops. He successfully develops his human senses such as speech, sight and hearing. At the end of the novel, the monster leaves leaving a cloud of disbelief. He leaves having killed some of victor’s family and driving Victor and himself to death. The monster was a loving character when he was born, but society and its values turned the monster into a killing machine.