How Shelley and Fowles Present the Socially Excluded Essay

How Shelley and Fowles Present the Socially Excluded Essay

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How Shelley and Fowles Present the Socially Excluded

Men are numbered among beasts who renounce society, whereby they are
destitute of laws and the ordination of civility. Hence this ensures
that men, in creation are best, but when averse to justice and the
law, are the worst of all creatures.

(p.36 intro The Tempest by William Shakespeare, edited by Frank
Kermode 1961)

For the purpose of this essay, I shall focus my comparison on Victor
and Clegg and analyse the language they use. I will also explore the
form and structure used and give a personal response which will
include some commentary about the novels in terms of their
social/historical and literary contexts.

People's behaviour in social roles makes possible the life of a
society and its members.

Social roles are learned from culture, which defines how they should
be performed. They are not instinctive. However, people learn many
roles during childhood by observing their parents and other adults.
But on the other hand problems may result if the demands of one role
interfere with those of another. This situation is called role

Victor and Clegg are excluded by society primarily because they have
transgressed society's boundaries, that is to say, Victor plays God
and creates "a new species which would bless him as its creator" p.52
; his male monster is built from old body parts and strange chemicals
because he is determined to learn about "the secrets of heaven and
hell"p.37. Ironically, Victor creates a "hideous wretch" p.73 which is
"an outcast in the world forever" p.129. However, this "filthy daemon"
p.73 is initially gentle and has a kind, baby-like nature, just like
normal humans. Paradoxically, the monster is actually ...

... middle of paper ... a creation abandoned and shunned
by society and Victor his creator.

Therefore Shelley's use of letters enables the narrative to shift from
one character to another while remaining within the conventions of the
standard novel. Letters are also used to good effect as a means of
social interaction because characters are frequently out of immediate
contact with one another. Walton never encounters his sister in the
novel; his relationship with her is based wholly on the use of
letters. The same goes for Victor as he often isolates himself from
his loved ones but he does receive letters from Alphonse and Elizabeth
and this marks attempts to connect with him. Again, the monster uses
written communication in order to develop a relationship with Victor
when, at the end of the novel, he leads him northward by means of
notes on the trees and rocks he passes.

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