Consider the roles and the importance of Safie in the novel. Throughout the novel `Frankenstein', Mary Shelley introduces many characters that although are not either essential or principal to the main storyline, have important roles in highlighting certain issues and also in helping to set up the story to become more believable. In the novel, Safie is the daughter of an Arab and comes to live with the De Laceys, whom the creature calls his `protectors'. Aspects of Safie's life also highlight issues that Shelley feels strongly about. This essay shall consider the importance and the role of Mary Shelley's seemingly insignificant character Safie. When Safie first arrives at the De Lacey's, the creature witnesses an important change in Felix. `Felix seemed ravished with delight when he saw her, every trait of sorrow vanished from his face, and it instantly expressed a degree of ecstatic joy, of which I could hardly have believes it capable..." Ch.13 P.90 The emotions that the creature was witnessing were the emotions of love, and Safie and Felix are the first couple that the creature observes together. Perhaps it is from absorbing the intense emotions that Felix feels when Safie arrives, that the creature learns how to love, and that man and woman are meant to be together. Up until Safie arrives, the creature has only witnessed old De Lacey with his
To what extent do you agree with the view that, in Frankenstein, Mary Shelley is exploring 'the dark side of the human psyche'?
To what extent do you agree with the view that, in Frankenstein, Mary Shelley is exploring 'the dark side of the human psyche'? Shelley explores the dark side of the human psyche in her novel Frankenstein through her characters and their actions. By this I am referring to the actions of Victor in the novel, his creation of the monster and then his hatred towards it and also the monsters actions in the crimes he committed throughout the text. I believe that Shelley explores the dark side of the human psyche by creating a very thin line between humanity and becoming a monster again through her characters, who are very closely linked, Victor and his monster. At the beginning of the novel Shelley presents Victor as having a very positive attitude towards life, he and his family live together in an almost 'perfect' existence, "much as they were attached to each other, they seemed to draw inexhaustible stores of affection from a very mine of love to bestow them upon me." Shelley includes this quotation in the novel as she is laying the groundwork for the reader, she wants her readers to understand the two sides of Victor, the beginning when he is very loving and happy, compared to the rest of the novel where he becomes distraught and bordering on mad, "nothing is more painful to the human mind..." This quotation shows the reader that Shelley meant Victor to be very hyperbolic,
Frankenstein contrasts his 'thirst for knowledge' with Elizabeth's interest in 'the aerial creations of the poets'.
Frankenstein contrasts his 'thirst for knowledge' with Elizabeth's interest in 'the aerial creations of the poets'. What is your response to Shelley's exploration in Frankenstein of the relative merits of science and literature? Mary Shelley grounded her fiction of the scientist who created a monster he cannot control upon an extensive understanding of the most recent scientific developments during her days. She thereby initiated a new literary genre, what we now call science fiction. More importantly, she used this knowledge both to analyze and to criticize the more dangerous implications of the scientific method and its practical results. Implicitly she contrasted what she considered to be "good" science - the detailed and reverent description of the workings of nature- to what she considered "bad" science, the hubristic manipulation of the elemental forces of the nature to serve man's private ends. In Frankenstein, she illustrated the potential evils of scientific hubris and at the same time challenged the cultural biases inherent in any conception of science. Victor Frankenstein chooses to work within the newly established field of chemical physiology. He must thus become familiar with the recent experiments in the disparate fields of biology, chemistry, mechanics, physics and medicine. The need to span the entire range of science is stressed by Frankenstein's chemistry
An exploration into the similarity and differences between Mary Shelly’s ‘Frankenstein’ and John Steinbeck’s ‘Of Mice and Men’
An exploration into the similarity and differences between Mary Shelly's 'Frankenstein' and John Steinbeck's 'Of Mice and Men' Mary Shelley, born August 30, 1797, was a prominent, though often overlooked, literary figure during the romantic Era of English Literature. She was the only child of Mary Wollstonecraft, the famous feminist, and William Godwin, a philosopher and novelist. She was also the wife of the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley. Mary's parents were shapers of the Romantic sensibility and the revolutionary ideas of the left wing. Mary, Shelley, Byron, and Keats were principle figures in Romanticism's second generation. Whereas the poets died young in the 1820's, Mary lived through the Romantic era into the Victorian. Mary was born during the eighth year of the French Revolution. "She entered the world like the heroine of a Gothic tale: conceived in a secret amour, her birth heralded by storms and portents, attended by tragic drama, and known to thousands through Godwin's memoirs. Percy Shelley would elevate the event to mythic status in his dedication to The Revolt of Islam".(from page 21 of Romance and Reality by Emily Sunstein.) From infancy, Mary was treated as a unique individual with remarkable parents. High expectations were placed on her potential and she was treated as if she were born beneath a lucky star. Godwin was convinced that babies are born with a
What views of 'mankind' does the Romantic writer, Mary Shelley, present in Frankenstein? Mary Shelley was writing shortly after the French Revolution and at a time when numerous scientific theories were being put forward. She was the daughter of two radical thinkers Mary Wollstonecraft and William Godwin, married to the romantic poet Percy Shelley and she was very well read. Hence it was inevitable that her view of 'mankind' would incorporate many different aspects. At the start of the book we see the romantic character Walton preparing to set out on a journey of discovery to the North Pole. Walton exhibits many aspects of the romantic - he is self-educated, has a love of nature, he is ambitious wanting to discover a passage to the North Pole: 'I am going to unexplored regions to 'the land of mist and snow'; but I shall kill no albatross.' and he sees the importance of friendship and feels the lack of it has a serious disadvantage 'I bitterly feel the want of a friend'. Shelley has used the epistolary style of writing in this part of the novel and this enables the reader to quickly get into the story and creates an air of realism. Walton's ambitions are a mirror of Frankenstein's and we see two characters who have become obsessed with the pursuit of knowledge believing that they are doing it for the good of mankind rather than any material wealth. Walton's 'insanity' being
Though Frankenstein was written by the daughter of a feminist, the women in the novel seem less important than the men.
Though Frankenstein was written by the daughter of a feminist, the women in the novel seem less important than the men. How far do you agree that Shelley does indeed present male characters as being more interesting and more central to the main ideas of the novel? Strangely, even though Mary Shelley came from a feministic background, the women in Frankenstein take a very backseat role as the story follows that of the men, with women only portrayed subjectively from Frankenstein or the monster, who are both male. Even though the character of Elizabeth is arguably the third most important character in the novel, it never takes her first person view of events. Firstly, Frankenstein is undisputedly the main character in Frankenstein, and for the majority of the novel it is Frankenstein's recalling of events, through Walton, "Strange and harrowing must be his story", as Walton hears his 'monstrous' tale. The story revolves around Victor Frankenstein in first person, which allows the reader to relate to him with more ease. With Shelley's decision of first person, it allows us to feel the emotions Frankenstein feels, which really complements the story as there are many extremes of happiness and sadness, allowing the reader to experience these as closely as possible. The first person perspective also gives way to bias, considering we are reading Frankenstein's personal reaction to
Compare and contrast the ways in which rejection is presented in an extract from Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein” Mary Shelley presents rejection very much through her characterisation of the Frankenstein monster. I have taken an extract from the novel in which Frankenstein is reunited with his monster. In this extract the monster relates to Frankenstein the troubles he has had in mixing in human society, and he then threatens Frankenstein to build himself a mate. Shelley presents the monster’s rejection through her use of form, structure and language, of which she uses to highlight the significance of the monster’s rejection and the intensity of pain that results from his rejection. Frankenstein’s monster describes a pivotal moment in his life that changes his destiny, or his desired destiny, and propels the story to its tragic ending. The monster approaches the home of his “protectors.” He waits for any opportunity for himself and the blind old man, De Lacey, to be left alone. When the youthful Salfie, Felix and Agatha leave the home, the monster seizes his opportunity to befriend a group of human beings. The tension building to this moment is heightened as the monster relates the nervousness and apprehension he feels before approaching De Lacey. The narrator, the monster, is aware of the great importance that this scene holds for his future, and as a result,
Analyse the presentation of horror in ‘Frankenstein’. To understand how horror is presented within a gothic horror novel we must first understand the aim of such, its purpose, it should “speak to the mysterious fears of our nature, and awaken thrilling horror- one to make the reader dread to turn around.” ‘Frankenstein’ is one of the definitive novels of the Gothic horror of the 18th century. While many of this genre focused on ghosts, ghouls and the paranormal, Mary Shelley focuses on the paranormal, the impossible, and the (at the time) unknown, to evoke a sense of terror and dread. “People fear what they don’t understand and hate what they can’t conquer.”- Andrew Smith. ‘Frankenstein’ creates horror through fear endorsing atmospheres and imagery. “By the glimmer of the half extinguished light… morning, dismal, wet... although drenched by rain which poured from a black comfortless sky.” Darkness is used to create a sense of dread and foreboding, leaving the reader wondering, “What is hidden in the shadows?” This is psychological torment for both the reader and Victor, rather than physical torment. The weather is used through pathetic fallacy to allude to, or reference things to come, “then, for an instant everything seemed of a pitchy darkness” the weather instantly shifts, to prepare the reader for the appearance of the creature; it
Close Analysis of Frankenstein Extract page.101 – 103 The confrontation between Frankenstein and the monster in Mont Blanc contains distinct themes as the presence of the monster post William’s death causes Frankenstein to want to engage in “mortal combat”. The idea of revenge is very common in the gothic genre as seen in Wuthering Heights. However, the concept of vengeance is futile due to the newfound power that the monster possesses and this is present through the use of imperatives and general dominance over Frankenstein. The conflict between the monster and Frankenstein also provides an insight into the key theme of religion against science because Frankenstein’s creation (science) is now the “daemon” suggesting religion is being affected due to actions resulting from the thirst for knowledge. The meeting in an isolate surrounding provides an ideal opportunity for the monster to express his views and to convince Frankenstein to hear his side of the story. William’s death causes Frankenstein to feel responsible for his death and he channels the guilt into anger towards the monster. The presence of the monster overwhelms Frankenstein with hatred and disgust as seen by “it was the wretch whom I had created. I trembled with rage and horror”. The strong nouns “rage” as well as “horror” show how Frankenstein despises his creation. Additionally, as
How does Shelley convey the concept of monstrosity? Compare this to your partner text. Mary Shelley conveys the idea of monstrosity through the creature and Frankenstein. She does this emotionally, psychically and mentally. Monstrosity does not just mean a physical appearance it is also how you act behaviour wise. This is why Frankenstein and the creature come across as monstrous characters as they behave in an monstrous way; there actions also affect other people. Frankenstein shows he is monstrous by acting in a selfish manner throughout the novel. Whereas the creature has monstrous features but he also has a monstrous personality within him which is slowly unfolded as the novel progresses. The idea of monstrosity also plays a huge part in Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. This is because like Frankenstein Dr Jekyll’s actions have an effect on other people. In Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde, Jekyll was merely experimenting on potions in his private laboratory and decided to drink the potion whereas in Frankenstein wanted to experiment on humans to create a new race for his own gain. This idea is used by Shelley to explore how Frankenstein wants to create a new species of his own, that will worship him. This is the first clue we are given by Shelley to recognise that Frankenstein wants to be god-like, so by creating a new race he will be able to be god to them. This led the characters in