The story of Frankenstein is a tragic tale whereby an obsessive scientist named Victor Frankenstein works night and day, isolated from his friends and family to bring a human to life. At the time of the story being written, England was undergoing a great industrial revolution which resulted in many scientists thinking up new inventions and ways to make life better. Victor’s longing to create life begun after his mother, whom he was very attached to, passed away. He wished to end death and sadness and gain the ability to create new life scientifically.
This was and still is frowned upon by some audiences as it was seen as ‘Playing god’. In the beginning of the fifth chapter, tension is built up as Victor starts work on ‘a dreary night of November’ on the monster. The fact that Victor works by night suggests that he shouldn’t be doing what he is. Furthermore the tension is continually built up as Victor attempts to bring the creature to life, ‘It was already one in the morning; the rain pattered dismally against the panes, and my candle was nearly burnt out’. This description emphasises on the dull, rainy night, which sets a very grim atmosphere.
This signals that things are not going to go well. The setting is very miserable. The words that Victor uses to refer to the creature are significant factors in the role of depicting the creature as monstrous. As Victor brought the being to life, he realised that it was not the perfect being, but a deformed, ugly creature. He described it as ‘a catastrophe’ and a ‘wretch’. He then rushed out of the room and escaped to his bedroom where he tried to ‘seek a few moments of forgetfulness’ by sleeping. The nature of these descriptive words suggest: that the creature is some kind of monster; one that should be feared.
Soon after that set of events, the monster arrived at the bed; posing no threat whatsoever, yet Victor shouted and fled to the courtyard. Immediately, the impression we get of Victor is a careless, cruel and selfish man. He judged the helpless creature merely by his appearance. The reader at this point would feel pity for the creature and possibly anger towards Victor due to his cruel actions. The careless and selfish actions of Victor at this point strongly link to previous parts of the story, where Victor isolated himself in Ingolstadt where he worked day and night, showing no care or though for his friends and family.
The line: ‘With an anxiety that almost amounted to agony, I collected the instruments of life around me… ‘ and ‘… it was already one in the morning’ show Victor’s determination to create this being. Though his love for Elizabeth did exist, he was quick to leave her so he could get on with his work on creating life. For ‘two years he worked on the creature’, however, he was very quick to abandon the outcome of his toils. These actions strongly suggest that Victor is an irresponsible man and refuses to acknowledge his actions.
The creature itself is portrayed as monstrous, through Victor’s descriptions of his appearance. Descriptions such as: ‘miserable monster’ and ‘demonical corpse’ are used. These descriptions portray the creature as some kind of ugly, deformed and evil character. The word ‘demonical’ suggests that he is evil and out to get Victor; however this is far from true. The creature’s appearance was not his own choice, though Victor still cruelly shunned him away due to it. The creature did not pose a threat; furthermore he was confused and helpless.