Physical Appearance in Mary Shelly's Frankenstein Essay

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Physical Appearance in Mary Shelly's Frankenstein In Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein we are introduced early in the story to one of the main characters Victor Frankenstein and subsequently to his creation referred to as the monster. The monster comes to life after being constructed by Victor using body parts from corpses. As gruesome as this sounds initially we are soon caught up in the tale of the living monster. Victor the creator becomes immediately remorseful of his decision to bring the monstrous creation to life and abandons the borne creature. Victor describes his emotions and physical description of his creation as follows: “How can I describe my emotions at this catastrophe, or how delineate the wretch whom with such infinite…show more content…
In this essay I will examine how the monster’s looks and actions reflect the predominant cultural feelings that those who look different are bad, evil or incapable of normal feelings. That somehow because one may look different from the rest of us there must be something emotionally as well as physically wrong with them. As I struggled to grab on to a thesis for this essay, it finally occurred to me that my empathy for the monster really was fundamental in my reading of this text. In further examining why I would feel this way, and by comments made in class on this subject, I soon realized that I had a parallel to the monster’s experience right in front of me – literally. My brother, borne with a severe cleft pallet and lip he has endured twenty-three years of surgeries and therapies to repair the structure of his face. The first surgeries focused primarily on function of his basic needs: eating, breathing, speaking etc. without emphasis on how he looked. However, these past few years, as he approached his early twenties, the surgeries have focused primarily on his appearance. Like the monster, he experiences many prejudices based on his appearance. He is frequently looked upon suspiciously in stores while shopping and has been approached by security on occasion. Strangers tend to shy away from him and often look away and do not respond if he directly address’ them. He
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