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To what extent is

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Introduction

To what extent is "Frankenstein" typical of gothic literature? In you answer make close references to its context and Mary Shelly's use of language. This essay will assess how typical of the gothic genre writings is Mary Shelly's "Frankenstein". The novel was written at a time when electricity was first discovered and Galvanism was being explored, mainly for medical reasons. People at this time were ignorant and sceptical of medicine and so most people would have been disgusted by these studies. At this time the Romantic period was well under way, this movement (which Mary shelly and her husband Percy Shelly who was a poet belonged to) was about freedom of thought, the beauty of nature and the imagination. It was also a time of social change, with the French revolution just over the waters; this could be why the novel is mainly set in central Europe. The structure of Mary Shelly's "Frankenstein" is in many ways typical of the gothic genre. Within the novel there are many letters written to family members explaining what's going on at that point, this builds up suspense, which is a technique many authors who wrote in that era used. ...read more.

Middle

He explains this to Frankenstein when they meat, "solitude was my only consolation-deep dark, deathlike solitude" Using alliteration to stress the solitude. The third main character that we see is again lonely because she is left behind for years at a time when Frankenstein if off creating his monsters. We feel great sympathy for Elizabeth, who is portrayed as pure, aerial and racial beautiful. "Her hair was the brightest living gold...her face so expressive of sensibility and sweetness" This is where we first hear of Elizabeth, where she stands out from all the other children because she is so innocent and pure. Mary Shelley writes in a feminist slant when Elizabeth is concerned, this could be influence from her mother Mary Woolstonecraft who was a feminist. As in most gothic genres writings there is a twist, when Frankenstein meats with the monster, the reader expects the monster to be vicious and violent, with Frankenstein composed and collected, however the opposite is true. " Be gone vile insect! Or rather, stay, that I may trample you to dust" is said by Frankenstein when enraged, but the monster is not shocked by this and stays calm and answers with great intelligence, to the extent that the monster even tries to calm Frankenstein "Be calm! ...read more.

Conclusion

There is also a lot of suspense built up around the fact Frankenstein new there was more suffering to come. "I wondered like an evil spirit, for I had committed deeds of mischief beyond description and more much more was yet behind" This leaves the reader feeling that you want to know what is the much more that he talks about. I think Mary Shelly's novel of "Frankenstein" is to a great extent typical of the gothic genre, it has a lot of the techniques used by gothic writers and uses a lot of the affects. However the novel is not totally typical of the gothic era because there is no proper good verses evil, the monster is meant to be evil but we as the reader feel far more sympathy for the monster and less to Frankenstein. Frankenstein is the protagonist and main character so we are typically meant sympathise with him, but the novel looses the gothic edge when we start hearing things from the monsters view and so start to feel sorry for him, and roles switch like they did when the monster and Frankenstein met the reader does not really know who to sympathise with towards the end. ...read more.

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