Who is the real monster in Mary Shelleys Frankenstein

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Who is the real monster in Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein”

Initially, great emphasis must be given to the first appearance of the creature in the novel. It has to be made clear that the narrator in this chapter is Victor Frankenstein himself. The event of the creature's creation is explored from Frankenstein's perspective and does not allow the reader to empathise with the creature. Shelley uses this to highlight the monsters more horrific characteristics. In addition, Frankenstein himself believes that he has created “a thing such as even Dante could not have conceived”. Therefore, the reader's impression of the creature is biased at this point.

Pathetic fallacy in chapter 5 foreshadows the monster’s creation and the tragedies that will follow - “Dreary night of November” .The rain falling “dismally against the frames” and darkness, creates an atmosphere of a supernatural nature.

Shelley’s diction gives the creature’s birht a  Primarily, the corpse did not sweetly awake, but when its 'dull yellow eye' opened, 'it breathed hard and a convulsive motion agitated its limbs'. Frankenstein had 'selected his features as beautiful', but when the creature came to life 'the beauty of the dream vanished', as luxuriances such as 'lustrous black' hair and 'teeth of a pearly whiteness' only formed a more 'horrid contrast with his watery eyes'. At this point, the only characteristic of the creature that expresses monstrosity is its appearance, but it must not be judged solely by that.

Although it might not seem so, there is a large amount of humanity conveyed by the creature at this point. As it 'stretched out' to reach Frankenstein, a 'grin wrinkled its cheeks', which indicates a need for its creator. The monster is behaving like a newborn baby needing the guidance of its mother. In my opinion there are no signs of monstrosity in its actions at this stage.

After the creature's escape from Frankenstein's laboratory the reader is given the chance to empathise with it, as its own story reveals its true feelings. The narrator in these chapters is the monster itself and the events are, therefore, surveyed from its perspective. A dual narrative, such as this, gives the opportunity to explore events from different points of view and affects ouropinion of the characters. Although this appears to be confusing at first, it aids the reader to a great extent and improves our understanding of the sub-text of the novel.

It is reasonably evident from the language used by the monster, that the reader is faced with an almost civilised person, who now makes its first steps towards maturity. It is confusion, rather than monstrosity, which is expressed by the creature in this early stage. This surprises the reader, as a false impression was made fromFrankenstein in previous chapters. The monster experiences a 'strange multiplicity of sensations' and its humane characteristicscan be clearly recognised.

The monster calls itself a 'poor, miserable wretch' and recognises its hideousness. The fact that it 'sat down and wept' indicates its human nature. It is 'overcome with joy' when it experiences warmth from a nearby fire and howls with 'pain' as it 'thrust (its) hands into the live embers'. It appreciates beauty in nature and tries to mimic sounds of 'sweet little winged animals'. However, the 'inarticulate sounds which broke from (it) frightened (it) into silence again'.

The creature's relationship with nature is incredibly similar to one of a child and its parents. It discovers life through its interaction with Mother Nature and learns to appreciate and love beauty in animals and humans. It utilizes nature to acquire new skills and regards it as benevolent towards it.

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In my opinion, the most powerful expression of humanity in these chapters would be the creature's first meeting with the DeLacey family. The monster realized that 'the girl possessed delicate beauty' and was impressed by the 'rugged good looks of Felix'. It 'longed to reach out and touch them both', but 'felt fear for these strange beings'. The creature desires to communicate with human beings, but is awfully afraid of their reactions towards it because of its appearance.

Despite of the creature's innocence there are various signs of monstrosity shown in these chapters. Although without being aware of it, the ...

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