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Frankenstein: Interdependence of People and Society

Uploaded by xsparklyvix on Sep 05, 2005

Explore Shelley’s presentation of the interdependence of people and society

Shelley presents the dependence of people and society as intertwined and dependent on each other throughout the novel ‘Frankenstein’. From the struggle for survival from the monster who, shunned by society lives alone, the reader has a clear view of the importance of society to being able to survive. From Victor’s struggle to cope with the pressure of conforming to society, the De Lacey’s reaction to society and Justine’s injustice from the laws placed around us this view of society in relation to people is supported.
Society is defined as “a social community who interact and survive by depending on one another to provide help and support. The society is restricted and guided by laws and regulations, which support the running of the community”. However, a society creates a hierarchy of people, which in turn produces discrimination and prejudices against each other. This is most clearly shown through the reaction of the society against the monster ‘The whole village was roused, some fled, some attacked me’ because he physically looked different from the rest of the community, ‘Abhorred Monster’. This forces the monster to feel depressed and begin to hate his appearance ‘I was a poor, miserable wretch’. He understands he is not part of the community ‘I knew that I possessed no money, no friends, no kind of property’. Shelley has shown how through being part of a community you instantly reject others who do not look or act similarly to the rest. By excluding the monster, he has turned into a recluse, obsessive about becoming part of the society ‘I ardently desired to become acquainted’, this leads to his degradation. Without having any social interaction he becomes lonely and questions the importance of his self within society ‘What was I?’.
In the introduction of the novel by Volney ‘Ruins of Empires’, Shelley provides a critique of the society as monstrous and discriminative. People commit unspeakable crimes against each other and exploit those who do not possess the trivial virtues of money and noble birth. The monster’s reaction to people at hearing this ‘at once so powerful, so virtuous and magnificent, yet so vicious and base’ shows Shelley’s reaction and portrayal of society as biased to support those who are of wealth and status.
As the creature’s education begins to grow, he begins to understand the superficial qualities of being...

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Uploaded by:   xsparklyvix

Date:   09/05/2005

Category:   Literature

Length:   5 pages (1,202 words)

Views:   9667

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