The characterization of Victor Frankenstein
The monster’s character also includes a lot of Gothic features, particularly in chapters 11-16 when it is the creature’s tale. In chapter 5 page 55 Victor is describing the beast’s ugly and attractive features. This is socializing disgust with desire, which is another crucial function in Gothic writing: “His yellow skin … his teeth of pearly brightness” (Chapter16. P. 137) The animals “yellow skin” which is viewed as an unsightly feature contrasts with the monsters attractive “teeth of pearly whiteness”. Nevertheless, this is not suggested to make the creature more appealing, but to emphasise how unsightly it is.
This is a great language technique used by Mary Shelley that follows the functions of Gothic writing. After developing the monster, anyone would believe the monster would be grateful for providing him any life at all. However, the beast desires Victor to feel as unpleasant as he does. This is because everybody who the beast has attempted to challenge, they have been revolted at his ugliness and afraid or afraid: “Monster! Ugly wretch! You want to consume me and tear me to pieces.
You are an ogre.” (Chapter 16. P. 137) After insults like this there is not surprising that why the beast is so upset and angry.
This was a contrast due to the fact that although the beast saved the child, he got shot even if of the method he looks. It is occasions like this that take place throughout the story that develop the animals anger a lot that he wants his developer dead. Animal imagery is used to describe the creature in chapter 16. This could be seen as a Gothic function as it makes the monster much more uncommon and freak-like. One Gothic function is that a piece of writing takes a look at the limits of order/disorder and the monster certainly falls under this classification: “I was like a wild monster that had actually broken the toils” (Chapter 16.
P. 131) This quote by the monster shows that he has lost all confidence in himself and even he can see himself as ugly and an animal. The word “beast” is of course the word we relate to animal imagery. He even describes himself as “wild” which shows that even he knows things got out of hand and he has done wrong. The Wretch also uses satanic imagery to describe himself, which has a similar effect as the animal imagery has. Gothic writers often show a darker side to the hero, but in Mary Shelley’s ‘Frankenstein’ the monster’s character is used as a darker side to Victor throughout the novel.
Victor being the hero, and the monster being the darker side of him. After all, it was Victor who created the monster so it is his responsibility and is sort of a part of him: “God in pity made man beautiful and alluring, after his own image; but my form is a filthy type of yours, more horrid from even the very resemblance” (Chapter 15 P. 126) This is a very important quote in the story by the monster. Not only does it show that the monster is extremely intelligent, but that he has feelings and is sensitive as well.
The phrase “my form is a filthy type of yours” shows that he resembles Victor, but only the negative points. It also represents what can happen when reason sleeps- the monster comes out. Multiple narration is another key Gothic feature and this novel is no exception. The story starts off with letter from Robert Walton. These are important letters that set the story off and are important to the Gothic tone. Chapters 1-10 are Victor’s words, it then moves on to the creature’s tale up to chapter 16. Victor is then left with a very important decision to make in Chapter 17:
“My companion must be of the same species and have the same defects. This being you must create. ” (Chapter 16. P. 139) This quote was taken from the end of chapter 16. Victor then has to make up his mind of whether to create another monster or not. He then is left to make a decision in chapter 17 when he becomes the narrator: “The being finished speaking and fixed his looks upon me in the expectation of a reply. ” Multiple narration has a number of positive features. It gives different perspectives, which allows the reader to become more critical.
It also avoids the restrictions of 1 narrator and gives a deeper insight into the characters, creating similarities and contrasts. It also affects the reader’s feelings buy avoiding biased views. It often makes the reader feel disgust and desire, which is of course a gothic feature. The narrative structure in ‘Frankenstein’ is no exception. The settings in Gothic novels are very important to the storylines. They often represent how the character is feeling or that something is going to happen. In chapter 7 Victor receives a letter telling him that his brother had been killed.
This, Victor thought, was the work of his creation. The storms brewed and Victor said: “This noble war in the sky elevated my spirits” (Chapter 7 P. 73) This is pathetic fallacy representing Victor’s emotions: rage, anger and revenge. The words “noble war” also creates irony as the wretch later on claims an “ever-lasting war” with Victor. We also think of monsters when we hear storms and the thought of lightning links to lightning and electricity. The word ‘moon’ is repeated numerous times throughout the story. However, this is not just a spooky Gothic feature. It has symbolism behind it.
The moon is supposed to be like menstruation and influence our emotions like menstruation does. The word menstruation is comes from the word month which is derived from the moon. Diana the Huntress is a mythical creature who is supposedly the Goddess of the moon. She is supposed to be a pioneer and have guided people through the wilderness. This obviously links to the novel ‘Frankenstein’ because the wretch spent most of his time in the wilderness of the forest. The novel ‘Frankenstein’ obviously falls into the Gothic category, following all features that good Gothic novels have.
The Gothic literature characteristics and features, combined with Mary Shelley’s great language techniques have made ‘Frankenstein’ a big success. ‘Frankenstein’ was an original storyline, inspired by a nightmare, and has carried on for centuries, making the name ‘Frankenstein’ a name everybody has heard of. Today, the name ‘Frankenstein’ has a myth behind it, which is a big green man with bolts through his neck and a deep croaky voice. After reading Mary Shelley’s ‘Frankenstein’ I now know that Frankenstein was the creator of the monster and the wretch is actually an intelligent, sensitive being.
Mary Shelley will carry on being well known for this original piece and her ‘Frankenstein’ has done the Gothic novel status proud. The novel is still raising important questions today because life has still not been formed. The nearest we have got to this was Dolly, the world’s first cloned mammal and she died young of lung disease. Show preview only The above preview is unformatted text This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Mary Shelley section.
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