The Novel Frankenstein Or The Modern Prometheus Was Written By Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. This Was The Highlight Of Her Work.

1998 words - 8 pages

The novel Frankenstein or The Modern Prometheus was written by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. This was the highlight of her work. The main plot of the story is enveloped by a unique frame story. The narration shifts from Robert Walton to Victor Frankenstein to the monster and in the end back to Walton. Thus making Walton's story the frame to Frankenstein's. This style of writing provides several interesting functions to the story as a whole. Shelley uses this frame story to create a very important narrative structure. The novel is filled with several different kinds of texts such as; letters, notes, journals, inscriptions, and books. It is through this "profusion of texts" in which Shelley uses to help unfold the ghostly and haunting story of Frankenstein and provide the narrative structure she wishes to convey.The novel takes place in the 1700's and starts with Walton's letters to his sister, Mrs. Margaret Saville who resides in England. In using Walton to begin the story it enables Shelley to introduce the setting of the novel to the reader. Walton is a well to do English explorer seeking a meaning to life and an searching for a discovery not yet ventured upon by any other man. These letters encompass the whole story. Victor Frankenstein's story fits inside Walton's letters; the monster's story fits inside Victor's; and the love story of Felix and Safie and references to Paradise Lost fit inside the monster's story. The various types of writings in the novel serve as "concrete manifestations" of characters' attitudes and emotions. Walton's letters transmit important information to the reader, which serves to "advance the plot and offer some sense of authenticity to an implausible story". In addition to Walton's letters, Victor also uses letters in he's narrative, which have come from Alphonse and Elizabeth. Victor's use of these personal letters allows Alphonse and Elizabeth to express them; shedding light on their respective concerns and attitudes, and thus having them seem more human. Letters also serve as a means of social interaction, as characters are frequently out of immediate contact with one another. Shelley uses the letters to allow for her to make shifts in the narrative from different characters while still having her story remain in "the bounds of the standard novel".With each shift of perspective, the reader gains new information about both the facts of the story and the personalities of the individual narrators. Each narrator contributes pieces of information that only he knows: Walton explains the circumstances of Victor's last days; Victor explains his creation of the monster; the monster explains his turn to evil. The differences in perspective between the narrators are sometimes severe, especially when it deals with Victor and the monster because they stand in counteraction to each other for the majority of the novel. Shelley's choice for complex narrative structure and excellent use of a frame story help her to achieve such an...

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