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Using the episode in which the monster meets his creator, Frankenstein, as a starting point, discuss how Mary Shelley explores ideas of good and evil in this novel

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Using the episode in which the monster meets his creator, Frankenstein, as a starting point, discuss how Mary Shelley explores ideas of good and evil in this novel Briony Donnelly "Frankenstein" was written by Mary Shelley. She was born in 1797 and died in 1851. Her parents were also progressive writers, and their work would have influenced Shelley's work. "Frankenstein" is written in the gothic horror genre. The idea of Frankenstein actually came to Mary Shelley in a half waking nightmare. She herself said, "When I placed my head on the pillow I did not sleep......... My imagination, unbidden possessed and guided me, gifting the successive images that arose in my eyes..." Shelley felt possessed by the novel. She wanted to write a story to frighten the reader, as she herself has been frightened the night of the horrific nightmare: "Oh! If I could only contrive one which would frighten my reader as I myself had been frightened that night". She does not just imagine the horror of her story; her imagination is possessed by this story; just as Frankenstein is possessed by his horrific activity of making a monster or a new species. ...read more.


So this shows that he has a good side. But this example also shows Frankenstein's bad side as well as good side when he says that he will make the monster a mate he then takes it away and dashes the monster hopes by then going back on his word. This shows a very good contrast between good and evil as this is a terrible thing to do to someone, taking away their only hope to be loved. But also he is saving mankind because if he made a female monster then they would be able to reproduce. So he is undertaking a good deed to mankind, but a bad deed to his own creation. He is the monster's creator and he has abandoned his son-like creation. This brings out a sense of evil in Frankenstein's character as he abandoned the monster to fend for himself not thinking of anyone but himself. If he stopped to think how he reacted then he would realise that what he was doing was wrong, this might have stopped the monster from turning evil. In the beginning of the novel we see the monster having a good side. ...read more.


But he takes it too far and goes for knowledge beyond human knowledge. He wants to make a human race that will live forever, cheating death. Beating all diseases and living forever. But this did not happen, as because he did not like the physical appearance of his creation, he deserted him. This was not done out of evilness, but out of panic. He then wishes the monster dead, and actually tries to kill him. This is out of evilness, as he does not want the monster in his life anymore so he decides the only option is to kill him. We feel a little sympathy towards Frankenstein, as we know that is not what he wanted to happen. But it is his fault and he could have handled the situation better, so this is a contrast between the good and evil in his character; but also it brings out the ideas of good and evil in the contrast between Frankenstein and the monsters character. In conclusion I think that yes, the monster is evil. But I also feel that it is not his fault, that it is society's fault. I think this is the point Shelley is trying to put across. I think that Shelley is trying to tell us that the reason that there is evil in the world, because of society in itself. ...read more.

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