• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Look at the significance of chapter five to the novel as a whole. Focus on the relevance and effect of writer's use of language to describe setting, character and what it shows about social and historical influences. "Frankenstein"

Extracts from this document...


GCSE ENGLISH LITERATURE COURSEWORK PRE-1914 PROSE MARY SHELLEY'S "FRANKENSTEIN" Look at the significance of chapter five to the novel as a whole. Focus on the relevance and effect of writer's use of language to describe setting, character and what it shows about social and historical influences. "Frankenstein" is a novel which was written in the 19th century by Mary Shelley. The novel is about a man named Victor Frankenstein who attempts to create life, and succeeds. In this novel we get to see the powers and dangers of technology and Mary Shelley suggests that when you meddle with it the outcomes can be very dangerous. The novel not only tells us a story, but also has a deeper meaning with a number of key themes. One of the themes is that the idea of seeking knowledge is risky. "He who seeks knowledge only has sorrow." This is another one of the key themes of Frankenstein. Mary Shelley's life had a great impact on her writing; one of the reasons was that her parents were both intellectual, which led to Mary Shelley being interested in many debates during that time. One of the things that was happening during that time was the industrial revolution, and there were a lot of debates on that. Another influential experience she had was a miscarriage of her daughter. Some people think this could have been the reason why she was so interested in bringing the dead back to life. Not only that, but her own mother died ten days after her birth, which could have been another reason for her interest in life after death. This novel was also written as a warning about man's use of technology. Mary Shelley is trying to examine how far we should take technology and science. It also shows her fear that people themselves are turning into machines. The novel Frankenstein is a message to people not to interfere with the course of nature. ...read more.


Throughout this whole novel, Frankenstein's project and the creature create a rift between him and his family and friends, making him an outcast like the creature. This is the irony of this novel; he becomes the outsider himself. Mary Shelley uses language to develop the novel's atmosphere in chapter 5. She does this by entertaining the reader, mainly to create fear in the reader. 'Frankenstein' is one of the earliest examples of horror fiction. The reason Mary Shelley creates fear in the reader is to entertain them; the reason for this is that she expects them to read on since they feel scared. This makes the reader want to know what happens further on in the novel, plus it makes them carry on reading. Another way she makes the readers engaged in reading 'Frankenstein' is by using special techniques to describe the atmosphere in chapter 5, which makes the readers want to carry on reading. We see the use of this when Mary Shelley portrays the setting for chapter 5 when the creature comes to life. To achieve her aim in giving the chapter atmosphere, she begins with the sentence: "It was on a dreary night of November" She does this to establish the atmosphere of darkness, secrecy and isolation. To put forward this idea Mary Shelley talks about the weather, the time and the place, where it's all taking place. This all discloses Victor's isolation and the mysteriousness behind the form of work he's doing. One way she conveys the atmosphere is by referring to the weather and its condition throughout the beginning paragraph. "It was already one in the morning; the rain pattered dismally against the panes, and my candle was nearly burnt out," This quote shows the comparison between light and darkness, which adds to the mysteriousness of what is going on inside the laboratory. The writer is trying to emphasize that the creature is unknown to the outside world, so therefore this creates a sense of remoteness. ...read more.


This is shown in the setting, where she describes the rain and darkness. One thing which Mary Shelley shows a lot is, Victor's isolation and this is typical of Gothic fiction. The Gothic tradition is also shown in the plot where people deal with the unknown; they deal with things, which are out of their imagination and to do with supernatural. We see this with Victor because he is creating something that no one can imagine. Even though Gothic fiction is so old, it is still popular because it's a fashion, which will always remain with us. Another literary context, which Mary Shelley was influenced by, was Romanticism. The Romantics believed that the individual was more important than society. They also believed that the emotions of people were important too. Another thing that they believed was that nature has great powers. In chapter 5 we see the influence of romanticism when Victor falls ill, because of technology and science. However he is then helped to recover by nature. "It was the divine spring, and the season contributed greatly to my convalescence." Victor says that nature restores him back to health and back to his normal self too. Overall Mary Shelley is trying to say that nature is the greatest medicine and one should not try to change the fact by using technology. In the whole novel Mary Shelley argues against technology by talking about nature and emotions. We can clearly see that she is influenced by Romanticism in the writing of the novel. Another example that she uses is when the creature says to Frankenstein: 'you have given me emotions but didn't tell me how to use them'. This is typical of a Romantic's thought. Some of the things, which inspired Mary Shelley to write about Romanticism, were that her husband Percy Bysse Shelley was a romantic poet and so was their friend Byron. It was a particularly strong influence on artists and writer, at that time. So finally looking at the overall literary context used in chapter 5, it has given us as readers a better understanding of 19th century prose. ...read more.

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.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Mary Shelley essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Frankenstein. Look at the significance of chapter five to the novella as a whole. ...

    3 star(s)

    Shelley uses descriptive language, she describes the monster as having "yellow skin". Shelley writes this to create an image of the monster in the reader's minds. The novel also compares the monster to a diseased person, it also is comparing the monster to a dead body a dead body is

  2. In Frankenstein How Does The Use Of Three Narrators Affect The Reader's Response To ...

    He is unable to understand that the life of a crewmember is the life of a man, which should not be sacrificed just to fulfil blind ambition. Walton and Victor are very alike. Both see themselves as victims in situations that they are to blame for.

  1. Discuss Chapter four of 'Frankenstein' by Mary Shelley and relate it to the wider ...

    However, his prejudicial views are what appear to make him hate the monster, although this might be a contributing factor. Prejudice is another key idea Shelley presents to us in the novel. We can see Frankenstein discriminating against the monster when the creature first comes to life.

  2. Compare and Contrast "Frankenstein" by Mary Shelley and "Flowers For Algernon" by Daniel Keyes, ...

    nothing could be done to help Charlie and at the age of six Charlie was disowned by his immediate family and went to live with his uncle. From an early age Charlie was under huge pressure to be like everyone else and to be "smart", this still haunts him in

  1. Explore the Effect of Shelley's Authorial Craft on the Reader in Chapter Five and ...

    The focus of this essay is to explore the effect of Shelley's Authorial Craft on the reader, based on Chapter Five and Eleven. I will deeply analyze the techniques that she has used, and there effect on the audience. I will also look at how successful Shelley is at creating empathy with the audience.

  2. Explore Mary Shelley's attitude to Monstrosity in 'Frankenstein' through a comparison of the depiction ...

    He helped a young child who had fallen into a stream. However instead of gratitude the child's parent shot at him. So instead of appreciation for saving the child the 'monster' was greeted by a bullet, which caused him to suffer for weeks.

  1. Frankenstein - Look at the significance of Chapter 5 to the novel as a ...

    Scientists were undertaking very horrific experiments involving electricity and inanimate bodies. They were discussing the possibilities of bringing the dead back to life, but was it possible? One of these Scientists was Erasmus Darwin, who suggested that is was possible.

  2. Is Chapter Five Particularly Significant to the Novel Frankenstein?

    horrific and terrible ghastliness she rose notches and more above the crowd. Published two years later, substantially revised in 1831 and now the basis for many films, plays and novels Frankenstein, from the fermenting imagination of a teenage drug addict, has become a somewhat international phenomena.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work