Chapter 5 is where we see the birth of the creature which Victor has put all his efforts in to creating. It is not what he expects it to be and we see a cowardice side to Victor’s character and that his overreaching has come to serious consequences. In the first paragraph, Shelley creates a dark, dismal atmosphere and creates tension by using pathetic fallacy; describing the weather and time of night.
She uses the phrase “dreary night of November”, this builds suspense for the reader as it gives the hint that an event is about to occur, as most horrific events occur in the middle of he night. The use of the word “dreary” shows that the night had a certain bleakness and gloom about it, which can refer to the Gothic theme of the novel.
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Perhaps Mary Shelley chose to open chapter 5 using this phrase because It sets the atmosphere and mood for the chapter, and gives a slight hint as to what the chapter will be like-The writer adds to the gloomy atmosphere by using “The rain pattered dismally against the panes,” this further adds suspense to the moment, as the writer uses pathetic fallacy to create a dark atmosphere. Victor Frankincense’s irrational behavior begins with his ambition, and what begins as a healthy curiosity about nature and science turns into an obsession that he cannot control.
Victor ‘collected the Instruments of life. ‘ This shows his arrogance and overreaching. This could seem quite disturbing especially In the 1 9th century as he Is going against God and Ignores the moral and ethical conventions. Connotations of ;lifeless, dull yellow eye, agitated, wretch, horrid’ all suggest that the creature is not what Victor expected or hoped it would be. Shelley uses these sinister and disturbing words which suggest something hellish or demonic. Furthermore in the first paragraph, “The candle had nearly burnt out” may be a metaphor to Frankincense’s hope.
The candle nearly burning out, could link to his sanity and morality diminishing. Victor doesn’t think about the creature ‘how can I describe my emotions? ‘ He is very self absorbed and can only think about his own feelings. He doesn’t consider the creature or how he is feeling being brought in to this world, alone and scared or what the consequence of his overreaching will have on society. Shelley uses the first person narrator which gives direct channel to the mind of the narrator whereby the deader experiences Victor’s thoughts and feelings first hand.
We gain knowledge and primacy of his perception ‘l had worked hard for nearly two years. ‘ ‘l had deprived myself of rest and health. ‘ Shelley uses the word ‘l’ throughout this chapter which again emphasizes Victor’s ego and he only thinks about himself. Victor’s abandons the creature ‘unable to endure the aspect of the being I had created, I rushed out of the room. ‘ The rejection of the creature is based on his fear. There Is a contrast between the abandonment of the creature and the abandonment of Victor’s family as tit his family for he is totally absorbed in the creation of the creature which is his tragic flaw.
Victor’s fear is evident in this chapter ‘Oh! No mortal could support the horror of the countenance. ‘ He cannot face the consequence of his actions so he Just abandons it, he is blinded by his scientific pursuit to create new life. Shelley use the phrase ‘the dim yellow light of the moon’ this heralds the appearance of the creature. This again is a gothic image and we feel pathos towards the creature as he is rejected by his new ‘parent. ‘ Victor misinterprets the creatures signals, he is trying to reach out to IM and he rejects the creature when he reaches out for guidance.
There is again reference to the rhyme of “The Ancient Mariner” when Shelley describes Victor’s wanderings in Inconstant. Victor feels desolate and alone, Just as the Mariner did in Coleridge work. The knowledge that Victor has gained will turn out to be a curse and a heavy burden, Just as the albatross was to the Mariner. This is a use of literacy illusion. Victor ignores the moral and ethical conventions of the 19th century and shows regret for his actions but it becomes clear to the reader that he has crossed the boundary.