Theme Of Light And Darkness In Frankenstein

1098 Words 5 Pages
Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley, is a gothic science fiction novel written in the 19th century about Victor Frankenstein’s creation of a grotesque and unnatural being and the misery that results for both Frankenstein and his monster. Victor, a bright and intelligent young man studying at university, becomes enamored by the quest to create life. After discovering the secret, he raids graveyards and morgues for materials to create a new life. Victor succeeds, but is disgusted and horrified by his creation upon its awakening and abandons it. As a result, the monster must learn about life and the world by himself. When describing the monster’s first experiences after being created, Shelley uses theme, characterization, diction, and imagery to create …show more content…
Shelley uses these terms to describe the monster’s first experiences because they bear a striking resemblance to what a baby would experience coming out of a womb. “By degrees, I remember, a stronger light pressed upon my nerves, so that I was obliged to shut my eyes. Darkness then came over me, and troubled me; but hardly had I felt this, when, by opening my eyes, as I now suppose, the light poured in upon me again” (Shelley 8-13). A baby is accustomed to the darkness while in the mother’s womb; there is no light. As soon he is born, he is usually flooded by bright and glaring lights in a hospital room. Similarly, Frankenstein is almost blinded by the light of the sun that he first perceives after awakening. He is unused to the brightness, having only been used to “dark and opaque bodies” (15) impervious to his touch and sight. In addition, he notes that the light feels oppressive to him. The monster continues to describe his world using light and darkness even after leaving Frankenstein’s home. He wakes up during the night and mentions how dark and frightened he feels, but the light and radiance of the moon calms him and gives him pleasure. It seems that he is becoming more accustomed to the light of the natural world, just like a baby does after some time out of the womb. In addition, the light reflects his growing knowledge and awareness. After a few days, he becomes aware of his five senses and begins to notice more specific details of the world around him. The monster’s description of his first waking moments using light and darkness draws many parallels to a newborn’s

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