After learning the language, the monster was now able to understand what the cottagers were saying. Whilst Felix was reading a book the monster stood by and heard. From Felix reading he was able to get knowledge of history, insight into the government and religions. The monster describes, ‘I obtained a cursory knowledge of history… it gave me an insight into the manners, governments, and religions of the different nations of the earth’. By just listening to a book the monster was able to deduce from it history, government, religion and empires.
The monster, while learning history, manners of government and religion, was able to make up own conclusions. The monster describes the state of man in chapter 13. ‘I learned that the possessions most esteemed by your fellow-creatures were high and unsullied descent united with riches. A man might be respected with only one of these advantages but, without either, he was considered, except in very rare instances, as a vagabond and a slave’. Here the monster describes man and how he sees mankind. This is evidence of the monster’s intellect on how quickly he was able come to such decisions.
As months went by the monster’s intelligence grew rapidly. He had reached a stage where he would question himself. Questioning ones self was known to be a high order skill. He says, ‘As I read, however, I applied much personally to my own feelings and condition… Who was I? What was I? Whence did I come? What was my destination? ‘ The monster in such short time had picked up a high order skill making him wonder even more. These questions ‘Who was I? What was I? Whence did I come? What was my destination? ‘ made the monster seek more knowledge making his intelligence grow even more.
Seeing that the monster’s intelligence grew in such a pace, the monster also presents him as being extremely lonesome, friendless, isolated and treated badly everywhere he goes. He describes the reaction of the villagers. ‘Some fled; some attacked me, until, grievously bruised by stones and many other kinds of missile weapons’. Here the monster had approached some people. The reaction is what the monster describes. This reaction would make the monster feel awful because everyone was scared of him at first sight, nobody gave him the chance to speak, nobody was willing to stop and listen.
These reasons would make the monster feel isolated and like an outcast. In addition to the monster feeling like an outcast, he uses his skills of self questioning to question himself about how he was in the absence of a mother or a father. He shows this by saying, ‘But where were my friends and relations? No father had watched my infant days; no mother had blessed me with smiles and caresses’. After reading the book Paradise Lost he started to ask himself this passage. He first shows the loneliness he had because neither friends nor family were with him, any friends or family to comfort him.
Paradise Lost was about the story of Adam, so therefore how God looked after Adam, the creature wanted a father who would watch his early life hood and a mother to love and care for him. Being treated badly came common for the monster but to be treated badly for saving someone’s life is uncalled for. When the monster saved someone’s life, even then he was treated badly. A passage from chapter 16 proves this. ‘I… saved her… he darted towards me, and tearing the girl from my arms… when the man saw me draw near, he aimed a gun, which he carried, at my body, and fired’.
This here shows the monster saving someone’s life and in return he got SHOT! This illustrates the monster being mistreated because the man didn’t give the monster a chance to speak. The man felt the monster was a threat, so he decided to fire a bullet at him. The monster also presents him as being friendless. By being friendless one felt unaccompanied and compared to a loner. When someone different would be the only strange being, for them to associate with other people and interact with them will turn into a difficult task. This is similar to the monster.
He says, ‘I had never yet seen a being resembling me’. Here he shows his solitude because not having anyone looking like the monster made the monster feel like he was one of a kind. This would effect his decisions about approaching humans even harder because not having anyone look like him he can’t interact with them. On top of the creature presenting himself as being a lonesome being, despite being treated badly and harshly he still has an affectionate feeling towards the humans. He would care for his cottagers and also would understand how they would feel if anything awful happened to them.
In chapter 12 he says, ‘I had been accustomed, during the night to steal a part of their store for my own consumption; but when I found that in doing this I inflicted pain on the cottagers, I abstained, and satisfied myself with berries, nuts, and roots, which I gathered from a neighbouring wood’. Here the monster shows that to seek his comfort he needed to steal some of the cottagers’ supplies. But soon he had found that this would be harmful to them and understood that by stealing their supplies it would cause them difficulty.
To show his kindness towards them he would rest by gathering wood and roots and satisfy his hunger by eating berries and nuts. To show how helpful the monster was, he performed several actions which would benefit his cottagers. He says in chapter 12, ‘I often took his tools… and brought home firing sufficient for the consumption of several days’. He would help them when they were in need because he realised that the DeLacey’s were in need of help. Unaware of the monster’s help the cottager’s happily accepted the firewood.
Furthermore of the monster presenting himself as being helpful was when he saved a human’s life. In spite of being treated like an animal the monster would still look after the human’s life. He shows this in chapter 16. ‘I… saved her, and dragged her to shore… I endeavoured by every means in my power to restore animation’. This here shows how the creature cared for the human’s life. The lady was drowning in a harsh river, water gushing in from all sides. The monster saw her and saved her by dragging her towards the shore. With all his efforts he tried to make her regain consciousness.
This here proves that the monster was indeed a very helpful being and a life saver. To love and to be loved is needed for one to fulfil one’s desires. Similarly the monster also expresses him as in one who is in need of love in his life. He quotes many lines where it proves that the monster is attracted to the opposite sex. He shows evidence of this from chapter 11. ‘the gentle manners of the girl enticed my love’. This line here shows that the monster was tempted by love. It shows he is attracted to women because he quoted a line in which he proves he likes women because it made him fell tempted.
Moreover, further confirmation of the monster being fascinated towards the womenfolk, is when he describes Safie in chapter 13. ‘I beheld a countenance of angelic beauty and expression. Her hair of a shining raven black, and curiously braided; her eyes were dark, but gentle, although animated; her features of a regular proportion, and her complexion wondrously fair, each cheek tinged with a lovely pink’. This here shows that the monster is fascinated because the amount of detail he gives about Safie, about her angelic beauty, rosy cheeks, long black hair shows what a good looking woman for the monster is.
Having read the journal of his creator, hatred filled up the monster’s heart. The journal which Victor Frankenstein had expressed his view on the monster, the creature itself was now reading it. Showing his hatred the creature says, ‘For the first time the feelings of revenge and hatred filled my bosom’. This line here shows the changing of the monster from being the Good Samaritan to the devil’s pet. The words first time give the meaning of the monster never experienced what hatred felt like and how revenge sought him comfort.
This shows the transition of the monster’s emotions. Still showing his kindness towards humans, the monster first takes his anger out on inanimate objects. He quotes, ‘I turned my fury towards inanimate objects’. This shows that the monster first took his hatred and strength out on things which did not move. For example buildings, trees etc. This also shows he still cares about humans because he doesn’t directly go and harms the humans. Society played a significant role in the changing of the monster.
From the previous paragraphs we understood the kindness of the monster, how he dealt with the treatment he got and how he helped others. But the treatment of society led him wild. The treatment he got was unbearable. When he conquered his fears about approaching the cottagers, the cottagers reject him in such a way it completely changed the monster. This proved to be true in chapter 16 when he says, ‘from that moment I declared everlasting war against the species’. Here he shows the monster shows him turning violent because the treatment led the monster making threats and the humankind in trouble.
Humankind will be in trouble because the treatment they gave the monster will lead him doing actions which will be really cold hearted and dangerous. Having read and analysed all the quotes which back the monster up and portrays in good light, I feel that anyone who is deformed in any way and are different, they deserve what we have. I feel this because we are all the same in one way or another. The monster was as same as the humans because he too had a brain, a heart, two arms and two legs; he had everything normal humans had apart from love.
I also feel sympathy towards the creature because he had went through some serious, painful, emotional, difficult times where each one he would take it in not mentioning it to anyone. I mentioned that Mary Shelley was presenting the monster as an intelligent, lonely, isolated, mistreated being. As well as all of that she wanted to express her views through the character of the monster. She felt society plays a big role in turning someone evil. Mary Shelley admired the works of Jean-Jacques Rousseau. He stated that man’s nature is harmless, but that it can become corrupted by society.
She agreed with him and presented this view when society had treated the monster harshly thus turning the monster evil. Another view Mary Shelley tried to express, was the views of science. During the era of the time she wrote her book, science discoveries were rapidly entering the world. Electricity was not well understood back then, so perhaps the fear of electricity and science would create something evil. She could’ve expressed that the powers of science would get out of hand and reach someone with a ballistic mind.