The monster and his manipulation of the reader.

Despite the monstrous acts that Frankenstein’s creature conducts throughout the novel there is an air of empathy and understanding from the view of the reader towards the monster. Although the words and views of the monster are seemingly innocent, his actions are exactly the contrary. The reader is manipulated by the charisma and eloquence of the monster and is even swayed in opinions as to the guilt of his actions falling upon him or onto his creator. The reader almost forgets the numerous horrendous murders conducted by the monster, because of his soft-spoken and intelligent demeanor. There is sympathy for the monster due to the fact that he often shows remorse and sadness, yet this sympathy seemingly does not fade even when he enacts more horrendous murders. So why does the reader continuously sympathize with this creature even though his actions contradict his eloquent words of remorse? Why does the reader weigh more on his tone, speech and attitude rather than his legitimate actions against mankind?

It is because of the pity the reader has for the monster, the suffering, loneliness, and pain the monster endures, make the monster seem as the victim. When the monster is viewed as the victim the search to find any form of innocence in it becomes a mission of the reader. When he expresses intelligence, sorrow, sadness and empathy, the reader begins to believe that the monster is actually not a heinous murderer, but instead a creature placed in adversity. This is a very clever manipulation set into the text by the author. It opens the question of what people can accept at face value, that we can accept a monster in society just because they are well spoken. It shows that actions do not speak louder than words, that how we view people can be equally if not more important to our point of view.


3 thoughts on “The monster and his manipulation of the reader.

  1. This is a very interesting take on the Monster that I don’t believe is looked upon very often. Could Shelley’s true message be that the true monstrosity in the Creature could be his manipulative nature? Or is it perhaps that he acquired said manipulative nature through his observations of man?

    Very interesting indeed.


  2. I never thought about it.
    Very interesting.
    It is true that the reader has pity for the monster and we often have the impression he is a victim! However, is the monster still a victim when he commits crimes like killing Frankenstein’s young brother?


  3. I think your post is very good since it shows an other side of the monster’s nature. It is true that with his appearance and the rejection he faces, we are more prone to feel sorry for him and almost forget that he committed murder.

    The questioning you present in this article really makes me rethink about my view of the creature.

    Thanks for your insight!


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