Mary Shelley's Frankenstein Employs Typical Features Of The Gothic Tradition

1119 words - 4 pages

Mary Shelley's Frankenstein Employs Typical Features of the Gothic Tradition

One of the most important aspects of any Gothic novel is setting. Mary Shelly's Frankenstein is an innovative and disturbing work that weaves a tale of passion, misery, dread, and remorse. Some would argue that Frankenstein is a classic Gothic novel. By a classically Gothic novel it is meant that the story employs a traditionally scary theme. This could include such things as dark and dreary castles set in isolated surroundings replete with dungeons. Supernatural beings such as ghosts and living dead may be included in the twisted, thrilling, unveiling tale. The novel does contain many Gothic characteristics in a sense that it does explore the uses of dark dreary basements, where the monstrous creature is made. Frankenstein is not set in a dull and dreary basement but you could say that where Frankenstein worked on his creation to be a gloomy dreary room. There is a struggle between good and evil throughout the story, an example of this is seen in Victor Frankenstein and his monster. We also get a lot of suspense around the person who is next to be murdered or die. An example of this is before Elizabeth dies when Victor Frankenstein is anticipating his own death.

The Author of Frankenstein the novel Mary Shelly had a very unfortunate childhood. Death reeked all around her throughout her life. Her mother died giving birth to Mary and ever since Mary had blamed herself for the death of her mother and this is one of the many factors of her life that can be related to the novel disturbing story line. Her sister and her son William perished before her in along line of illness and disease.

Chapter five starts with possibly the most famous line of any book. " It was on a dreary night of November that I beheld the accomplishment of my toils" This is an excellent example of classically gothic text. It explores the uses of internal horror. It also sets the scene, which is one of disgust and anguish. A rhetorical question is used in the first paragraph; it is used to make the reader build a picture of just how hideous the monster is.

Page 45 "How could I describe my emotions at this catastrophe, or how can delineate the wretch whom which such infinite pains and care I had endeavoured to form?"

Page 45 "His limbs were in proportion and I had selected his features as beautiful. Beautiful!" - Great god!

Throughout chapter five, when read between the lines one can begin to discover that Victor Frankenstein is beginning to believe that he is god himself the creator of life and all beings. This has much significance in respect to horrific behaviour of Victor Frankenstein. Chapter five is full of harsh but appealing words. Most of these are used in description of the creature. "I saw the dull yellow eye of the...

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