Lord Byron 's Manfred, The Iconic Overbearing And Guilt Stricken Manfred

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Beyond the scope of the mystic and supernatural world that exists in Lord Byron’s Manfred, the iconic overbearing and guilt-stricken Manfred has influenced the Byronic archetype to transcend beyond the gothic setting into today’s modern pop culture. Extending outside the gothic genre, which is characterized by the “macabre, mysterious, supernatural, and terrifying”, the haunting settings of looming, isolated landscapes, and dark forbidding symbolism, the Byronic hero archetype still exists in even the popular science fiction genre, with its themes rooted in dystopian and post-apocalyptic environments (Lynch and Stillinger 584). For instance, the Byronic hero archetype is portrayed in Hideki Anno’s Neon Genesis Evangelion through the…show more content…
This precise description of Manfred in total isolation in a gothic setting is also explored in Sheley’s “Demolished worlds: Manfred and sublime (unburial)” where Sheley discusses how the space that exists in Manfred functions as a place of “skeptical rendition of nature” using to illustrate Manfred’s destruction through the “unrestrained spaces of nature” that oppresses Manfred (Sheley). Through the descriptions of Manfred’s world as its own microcosm, Byron illustrates Manfred’s agonizing imprisonment and enclosure within a universe where unworldly settings such as “Of mountains inaccessible are haunts” exist, and a setting that allows the eerie existence of imaginative phenomenon to exist such as Manfred’s abilities to conjure spirits at will (Byron 640; 1.1.33). The concepts of the Byronic Hero’s own personal flaws tie in perfectly with the surrounding the character exists in, as it shows how the setting becomes a mirror into the character’s psyche. In Nicholson’s “Byron and the Drama of Temptation”, Nicholson discusses Byron’s obsession with writing with “action” and less so about “abstract ideas”, which Nicholson discusses drawn from Byron’s gravitation toward subjects such as history, anthropology, and “comparative life and manners of people”(Nicholson). Byron’s obsession with underscoring “poems of action” is shown in Manfred, which Nicholson argues is essential to Byron’s narratives as a “drama of exile” where

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