Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is the first Gothic novel I’ve ever read and so far I am enjoying it. Frankenstein takes you through a spiraling tale of mistakes, miss-communications, and misjudgments, causing you to experience extreme turmoil one second and jovial feelings the next. The characters take you on a terrifyingly insane journey with twists on every road. You sit in nail biting suspense at moments, and the next you’re ready to throw something at the wall out of frustration with the characters. As you know my first blog was ranting about one of the main characters, Victor Frankenstein. This blog is going to be about misjudgments and shallowness, and not being able to look beyond an appearance. In these last few chapters I’ve read it’s been from the creatures perspective and it has been quite interesting. He starts off as a big grotesque creature who really only has the mindset of a child. He goes into a village unaware of his ugliness and the villagers react savagely, throwing things at him, insulting him, and beating him until he flees, “The whole village was roused; some fled, some attacked me, until, grievously bruised by stones and many other kinds of missile weapons, I escaped to open country and fearfully took refuge in a low hovel…” (Shelley 112). People despised him and hated him just because of his looks, but he still has feelings and emotions just like any other human, because that in fact is what Victor created him with. When I read this it made me think of a movie that is now in theaters called Wonder, it’s about a boy named August Pullman who has a facial deformity.The preview shows you the many different reactions he gets, including disgust. This boy is facing some of the same things the creature is, being outcast just because of the way you look.
Another example of mankind’s shallowness in this novel is a day when the creature was traipsing through the wood and came upon a beautiful young girl who slipped and fell into a rapid stream, “I rushed from my hiding place and with extreme labour, from the force of the current, saved her and dragged her to shore.” (Shelley 151). What kind of hideous monster would risk it’s life to save another’s? Perhaps one who’s not a monster at all. Now to the shallowness part, the creature repeatedly tried to revive the girl but when her companion came along, he ripped the girl from the creatures arms and ran away. The creature then chased him still hoping to revive the girl when the man turned around and shot him. The creature, who saved this girls life, gets punished for doing so. “This was then the reward of my benevolence! I had saved a human being from destruction, and as a recompense I now writhed under the miserable pain of a wound which shattered the flesh and bone.” (Shelley 152). There are so many examples of humans judging humans by their looks, Beauty and The Beast, and one that sticks fresh in my mind is Rigoletto. A man with half his face scarred and deformed, opens his house to children in the community and helps them in many ways, but when a child gets hurt from falling into a damn, he takes her into town to get help so she can be saved and the townspeople then accuse him of killing her. He is then beaten and killed by the townspeople. In both these cases they had saved the girl, and got punished for it. Why is it that humanity does this? That they have to judge and only care for appearances?
I hope this blog has opened your eyes to the fact that looks aren’t everything, and to look beyond them. So I leave you with this, the humans judge, despise, hurt and kill these ‘monsters’ but does that not make them the monsters?
Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein. Penguin Publishing Group, 2013.