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Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

What Provoked the Monster’s Actions?
“My daily vows rose for revenge-a deep and deadly revenge, such as would alone compensate for the outrages and anguish I had endured” (Shelley 121). For anyone to get this angry in life, many things have to provoke them. For the monster, these feelings are caused by being abandoned as a baby, ten rejected over and over again by the human race because of the way he looks. In the beginning of the novel, Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley, the monster seems like a civil being, but throughout the book, he has many experiences that cause him to be a madman full of rage and misery.

In the monster’s first attempt to be a part of the human race, his differentness is only brought to attention. All alone in this world, the monster comes upon a village, but receives a welcoming that is anything but warm. The minute he is seen, he is called an “abhorred monster” and a “wretched devil” (Shelley 81). Although these exclamations are only made out of fear, the villagers only form their quick opinions based off his appearance. The villagers’ judgmental opinions make the monster start to realize he doesn’t fit in. Up to this point in his life, the monster has never seen himself and has no idea is different. After the rude comments, “children shrieked” and “one of the women fainted” (Shelley 81). This really is his first interaction with mankind as a whole. These experiences start to make the monster feel like an outcast. The monster has a good heart, but it is here, it starts to cloud with misery and rejection.



The monster’s sincere side is shown when he longs so greatly to have a relationship with the De Lacey family; but being rejected once again only forces his misery into rage. The monster learns emotions from watching the family, and feels a sudden closeness to them; this is his first relationship, in a sense. He suddenly cares for the family and “[longs] to join them”, but recalls “the treatment [he] suffered” with the villagers, so he knows he must be careful (Shelley 91). The monster learned the hard way he does not fit in, and he desires so badly for the De Laceys to accept him, that he is very careful to expose himself to them. Being so scared of rejection also adds to his discomfort, rage, and misery. The monster is crushed when the De Laceys are also scared of him. When they see him, “Agatha fainted”, and “[Felix] struck [him] violently with a stick” (Shelley 115). The family also rejects the monster. This rejection causes the monster pain and anguish, because he cared for them so much. By this time, the monster is so heartbroken and angry that he sets out to find his creator.

Despite all the bitter heartbreak and loneliness he feels, the monster tries to do a good deed. But is literally shot down. On his way to finding Victor, he saves a drowning girl in a rushing stream. A man who saw the monster with the girl “[aimed] a gun” “at [his] body and fired” (Shelley 121). The monster only tried to save an innocent girl’s life; but instead, he is shot due to his appearance. The wound causes him miserable pain and despair, which only makes him question his life once again. All alone, the monster endures “sufferings” and ponders the “sense of injustice and ingratitude of [the man’s] infliction” (Shelley 121). During his healing process, the monster can think of nothing but getting revenge on others, particularly Victor, so that they feel the same rage and misery he does. He concludes that his life was never meant to be enjoyed, and at this point, he vows to not only find Victor, but cause him pain as well. He feels that his life has been anything but fair, which causes him to take action like this.



All the miserable events in the monster’s life make him want to get revenge on his creator. He is heartbroken and lonely throughout his entire life, which closes off any hope for him. Being hurt by others in life over and over takes its toll on someone. Victor is an example of someone who had sufferings in life that he had no control over that pushed him to the edge.





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