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

Frankenstein and Paradise Lost

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Mary Shelley's Frankenstein Explore the ways Mary Shelley uses Paradise Lost in her novel; 'Frankenstein.' Shelley's story of a creature created by Victor Frankenstein has striking similarities to Milton's 'Paradise Lost' from the outset, as the second letter in the novel that documents Frankenstein's misfortune, is sent from 'Archangel'. Satan was an archangel before he was banished from heaven for challenging God, and we know that he was supposedly perfect. Frankenstein sought to make 'a human being in perfection', although both the creature and Satan fell from grace at the hand of their creators. The opening line of Paradise Lost underpins the correlation between the tales; 'Paradise Lost' opens with the lines, 'Of Man's first disobedience, and the fruit, Of that forbidden tree,' this is referring to Adam who took forbidden fruit from the tree of knowledge and was therefore exiled by God. This story of Eden and mans downfall has obviously influenced Shelley as Frankenstein's pursuit of 'nature to her hiding places' is what led to the demise of himself and his family. ...read more.

Middle

It is Satan and the monster who initially invoke the readers compassion, as the monster seems of a benevolent nature as he watched the 'beloved' De Lacy family and took 'pleasure' in aiding their labours. He also shows altruistic behaviour in saving a drowning girl, and lighting a fire to warm his creator, making him possibly more sympathetic than Frankenstein, who forgot his family in his aspirations to 'become greater than his nature will allow.' The monster states, after reading Paradise Lost and other literature he has found after eating the metaphorical apple, that 'sorrow only increased with knowledge', as he became aware from the De Lacey's, of such things as love and acceptance that he came to long for. His good intent could also be interpreted on his hearing Saphie play music that he found 'so entrancingly beautiful that they at once drew tears of sorrow and of delight from my eyes.' Satan's ruin also came from his pursuit of knowledge, leading both 'men' to their exile from the people they sought acceptance from. ...read more.

Conclusion

As the monster lives in a hut, we are reminded that he doesn't only live outside physically, but emotionally as he is a mere voyeur of family life while watching the De Lacys, and this social exclusion is to blame for his murderous behaviour, again relating to Satan who was excluded my his creator. We could again relate this to Satan who is looking for earth and is also 'racked with deep despair,' as are Shelley's characters. Frankenstein also resembles God, as he created his own version of Adam, and the monster that he constantly refers to as 'fiend' and 'devil' reminds him; 'You, my creator, abhor me..' his plea resounds through the humanity of every reader who has ever felt alone or incomplete, but these feelings however are to be changed as the monster commits heinous crimes against the humanity he once 'longed for,' and on his final rejection he cries; 'oh, earth...the mildness of my nature had fled, and all within me was turned to bitterness and gall.' This is when the role of God is transferred from Frankenstein and to the monster who will now decide his fate. ?? ?? ?? ?? Jo Devanny Frankenstein English Literature 1 1/30/2009 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Other Criticism & Comparison 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 AS and A Level Other Criticism & Comparison essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    The English Patient

    5 star(s)

    Finally, Historiographic metafiction often points to the fact by using the paratextual conventions of historiography to both inscribe and undermine the authority and objectivity of historical sources and explanations. (122-123, Linda Hutcheon) One author often associated with historiographic metafiction is Michael Ondaatje, in works such as Running in the Family,

  2. Ambition in "The Duchess of Malfi" and "Paradise Lost"

    The fact that someone who is ambitious will always be disappointed highlights the extremities of the maddening situation in which ambitions can cause torment and eternal suffering from longing to gain more; in this instance the Duchess's brothers attempting to gain control over her actions.

  1. A Critique of Society in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

    Isolation and loneliness are major themes in the novel which Shelley holds society responsible for. The monster suffers so cruelly due to his segregation and this parallels how Mary Shelley had grown up motherless herself. At the beginning of his life, he is so astounded by the simplest things such

  2. Otherness in The merchant of Venice, The Scarlet Letter and The Crucible

    Puritan community are fundamental to understanding the conflict between the individual and the community in The Scarlet Letter. The novel's second chapter details the "simplicity" and the "grim rigidity" of the puritan community, and Hawthorne seeks to deride it by presenting "the ugliest and the most pitiless woman" as the one who calls for her execution.

  1. Comparison between scientific advancements in Frankenstein and Dorian Gray

    and could possibly have led him to develop the sinister character of Dorian Gray. Victor Frankenstein could be described as too impatient, ambitious and self-centred to accept the slow pace of science and evolution, which could explain his despair before the creation of the monster.

  2. the fivepeople you meet in heaven analysis

    When asked the question of what good came of the Blue Man and Tala's death, this answer is simple. Eddie lived. As some may call it fate; love at first sight, or true love never dies. Many people say they find love, referring to it as an object; but in reality, love takes many forms.

  1. The Knowledge of Angels

    The fable is laced with irony as the two intellectual scholars; Severo and Benedixt are some what oblivious to the world out side the church, as all Benedixt's knowledge is textual and not from experience. Palinor is a biological thinker and his understanding is based on empirical knowledge, not things

  2. Similarities between "Frankenstein" and "In Cold Blood"

    suggesting that he does not see himself as a part of that society and thus is alienated from the entire world; this is later emphasized as he states that he is ?not even of the same nature as man?. Furthermore he mentions that ?of his creator he was absolutely ignorant?

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