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Mary Shelley

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Title: Mary Shelley


1
Mary Shelley
  • Frankenstein

2
Contents
  • - Mary Shelleys biography
  • - Frankenstein

3
Mary Shelleys biography
  • Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, née Mary
    Wollstonecraft Godwin, was the only daughter of
    William Godwin and Mary Wollstonecraft. Their
    high expectations of her future are, perhaps,
    indicated by their blessing her upon her birth
    with both their names. She was born on 30 August
    1797 in London. The labor was not difficult, but
    complications developed with the afterbirth.
    Despite expert attention, her mother sickened
    from placental infection and died eleven days
    after her birth, on 10 September. Mary was
    brought up with her elder sister Fanny Godwin,
    the daughter of Mary Wollstonecraft and her
    American lover Gilbert Imlay, who was adopted by
    Godwin and reared as his own child until the age
    of eleven when he disclosed her parentage to her.
    The family complications were considerably
    advanced in 1801 with Godwin's remarriage to his
    neighbour, the widowed Mary Jane Clairmont, which
    brought two further children, Charles and Claire
    Clairmont, into the household. A fifth sibling
    was added in 1803 with the birth of William
    Godwin, Jr.
  • The five children were instructed
    principally at home. Following Godwin's own
    precepts, there were little distinction made in
    their educations on the basis of sex, so Mary
    Godwin had an education of considerable breadth,
    one that few girls in her age could equal. Apart
    from formal instruction, the children were
    exposed almost daily to Godwin's extensive
    acquaintance among the London intelligentsia,
    ranging from the poet and philosopher Samuel
    Taylor Coleridge, whom Mary heard recite "The
    Rime of the Ancient Mariner" in Godwin's living
    room, to scientists like Humphry Davy and her
    father's bosom friend William Nicholson, the two
    foremost experimenters with galvanic electricity
    in the early years of the nineteenth century.
    These figures especially would later have a
    noticeable impact on the writing of Frankenstein.
    As heady as was this intellectual climate, there
    was a practical side to Mary's education in the
    Godwin-Clairmont household as well, for its
    income derived mainly from the proceeds of the
    Juvenile Library, their publishing venture
    specializing in books of instruction for younger
    readers. At the age of ten Mary had her first
    experience with publication, when the Juvenile
    Library printed her witty poem, Mounseer
    Nongtongpaw or, The Discoveries of John Bull in
    a Trip to Paris. By 1812 it was in a fourth
    edition.

4
  • That same year, at the age of fourteen, Mary
    was exposed to yet another broadening influence,
    when, in order to distance her from the
    step-mother she resented and disliked, Godwin
    sent her on an extended visit to the Baxter
    family in Dundee, Scotland. There she resided
    from June to November of 1812 and, again, from
    June 1813 to March of 1814, developing a strong
    attachment to the Baxter's adolescent daughter
    Isabel, who became her first close friend.
  • Shortly after her return to the family home,
    she became reacquainted with her father's
    youthful admirer, Percy Bysshe Shelley, whom she
    had first met in the company of his wife Harriet
    in late 1812. Now, he became a frequent visitor
    to the Godwin household, and the two of them fell
    in love. In July, with Mary still in her
    sixteenth year, the couple eloped to the
    continent accompanied by Mary's step-sister
    Claire.
  • It is perhaps to be expected that this
    couple, immersed as they were in the world of
    books, would turn the journal of their elopement
    into a travel book, which Mary wrote up and
    published as History of a Six Weeks' Tour in
    1817, while her first novel was being prepared
    for the press. The conjunction of the works
    suggests a self-assured young writer assuming a
    professional identity. The young woman who
    returned in September of 1814 from her two-month
    tour, however, was not yet ready for such a role.
    The couple was penniless, and Shelley was forced
    to hide from creditors Godwin, feeling injured
    by his daughter, would not even see her lover
    and Mary, unmarried and barely seventeen, was
    pregnant. To aggravate this sense of a sudden and
    severe constriction of opportunity, Mary's friend
    Isabel Baxter was forced by her family to
    terminate their acquaintance. Years later, upon
    her return to England from Italy as Shelley's
    widow, Mary found herself regularly refused the
    notice of respectable people who would never
    forgive her, whatever her subsequent career, for
    so blatant a transgression of proper social
    decorum.

5
  • Over the next two years Shelley fashioned a
    financial stability for them (and for William
    Godwin, even though he would still not speak to
    him), and the couple developed a circle of
    friends. Mary was twice pregnant, losing her
    first child, a daughter, after three weeks, but
    giving birth to a son, named after her father, in
    January 1816. In retrospect, she would idealize
    these years spent near Windsor, where she sets
    the early chapters of her third novel, The Last
    Man (1826). Still, she was as yet unmarried and
    had yet to accomplish anything on her own. The
    impetus to a new chapter in her life was provided
    inadvertently by her step-sister. Claire, who
    tended to compete with Mary, in a bizarre but
    successful scheme set out to secure her own
    poet-lover, and she hit on the chief prize, Lord
    Byron, whose separation proceedings from his wife
    formed the prime scandal of the 1815-16 winter.
    By the spring Byron had set off for exile on the
    continent, and Claire found herself pregnant.

6
  • Claire, needing to establish the paternity
    of the expected child, confided in Mary, who, in
    turn, convinced Shelley of the importance of this
    claim. So came about the famous summer of 1816 on
    the shore of Lake Geneva. Mary has left her own
    account of this period in the Introduction she
    supplied to the 1831 edition of Frankenstein.
    What she does not quite get around to saying in
    that dignified memoir is that Claire did, indeed,
    establish Byron's care for his future child,
    though with the unexpected and rather unpleasant
    proviso that he never again see the mother that
    Shelley made the acquaintance of, and then
    developed a particularly intense intellectual
    friendship with, the foremost poet of the age
    and that, amidst all these heady events and with
    almost no one but herself noticing, she quietly
    became a writer and set out on her remarkable
    career.
  • Upon her return to England in September of
    1816, Mary quickly began to develop the novel she
    had started in the summer. Its progress was twice
    interrupted by family catastrophe, first the
    suicide of her half-sister Fanny in October, then
    the discovery in December of the body of Harriet
    Shelley, who, being with child, had herself
    committed suicide the month before. Two weeks
    after they were notified of Harriet's suicide, on
    30 December 1816, Mary Godwin and Percy Bysshe
    Shelley were married.
  • This event brought about an immediate
    reconciliation with Godwin, but was attended as
    well by a lawsuit in the Court of Chancery
    brought by Harriet's family with the intention of
    depriving the father of custody of his two
    children from the marriage. The success of this
    suit convinced Shelley and Mary that they would
    suffer continual persecution if they remained in
    England. On the first day of 1818 Frankenstein
    was published anonymously, followed shortly after
    by Shelley's book-length narrative poem, The
    Revolt of Islam. On 12 March Mary and Shelley,
    with their two children Clara and William, along
    with Claire and her daughter Allegra, departed
    from England to make a new home in Italy.
  • The four years they spent in Italy saw the
    establishment of Percy Bysshe Shelley as one of
    the foremost poets in the English language. It
    likewise furthered the career of Mary Shelley as
    "The Author of Frankenstein," the rubric under
    which she continued her anonymous publication
    with a second novel immersed in medieval Italian
    history, Valperga or, The Life and Adventures of
    Castruccio, Prince of Lucca (1823). After Percy
    Bysshe Shelley's death by drowning in 1822, Mary
    Shelley found herself without sufficient
    financial means to remain in Italy and, with some
    reluctance, returned to England to begin a second
    existence there in the fall of 1823.
  • .

7
  • She never equalled the popular success of
    Frankenstein, but she published a number of other
    novels after Valperga The Last Man (1826), The
    Fortunes of Perkin Warbeck (1830), Lodore (1835),
    and Falkner (1837). In addition to her novels,
    she produced a large volume of miscellaneous
    prose short stories, biographies, and travel
    writings, including the retrospective Rambles in
    Italy and Germany of 1844. She likewise
    supervised the publication of her husband's
    Posthumous Poems, which appeared in 1824, his
    Poetical Works (1839), and his prose (1839 and
    1840). Her only surviving child was Percy
    Florence Shelley, who was born in 1819 and who
    acceded to the baronetcy upon the death of
    Shelley's father, Sir Timothy, in 1844. Mary
    Shelley herself died in her home in Chester
    Square, London, on 1 February 1851.

8
Frankenstein
  • - History of the writing of the novel
  • - Literary sources of Frankenstein
  • - Main characters

9
History of the writing of the novel
  • Mary Shelley spent the greater part of the
    summer of 1816, when she was nineteen, at the
    Chapuis in Geneva, Switzerland. The entourage
    included her stepsister, Claire Clairmont,
    Shelley, Lord Byron, and John Polidori, Byron's
    physician. Mary considered the area to be sacred
    to enlightenment. The weather went from being
    beautiful and radiant to melodramatically
    tempestuous. Torrential rains and incredible
    lightning storms plagued the area, similar to the
    summer that Mary was born . This incredible
    meteorological change was due to the eruption of
    the volcano, Tambora, in Indonesia. The weather,
    as well as the company and the Genevan district,
    contributed to the genesis of Frankenstein.
  • All contributing events that summer
    intensified on the night of June 16th. Mary and
    Percy could not return to Chapuis, due to an
    incredible storm, and spent the night at the
    Villa Diodati with Byron and Polidori. The group
    read aloud a collection of German ghost stories,
    The Fantasmagoriana. In one of the stories, a
    group of travelers relate to one another
    supernatural experiences that they had
    experienced. This inspired Byron to challenge the
    group to write a ghost story.
  • Shelley wrote an forgettable story, Byron
    wrote a story fragment, and Polidori began the
    "The Vampyre", the first modern vampire tale.
    Unfortunately, Mary was uninspired and did not
    start writing anything. The following evening the
    group continued their late night activities and
    at midnight Byron recited the poem, Christabel by
    Samuel T. Coleridge. Percy became overwrought
    during the reading and perceived Mary as the
    villainess of the poem. He ran out of the room
    and apparently created quite a scene. This
    incident undoubtedly affected Mary, leading to
    feelings of guilt that contributed to the story
    ideas she later developed. For the next couple of
    days Mary was unable to begin her story. The
    poets dropped theirs but Mary persisted in her
    creative endeavour. She felt that her ambitions
    and her value were at stake and attempted to turn
    the pressure and frustration into creative
    energy. On June 22nd, Byron and Shelley were
    scheduled to take a boat trip around the lake.

10
  • The night before their departure the group
    discussed a subject from de Stael's De
    l'Allemagne "whether the principle of life could
    be discovered and whether scientists could
    galvanize a corpse of manufactured humanoid".
    When Mary went to bed, she had a "waking"
    nightmare I saw the pale student of unhallowed
    arts kneeling beside the thing he had put
    together. I saw the hideous phantasm of a man
    stretched out, then, on the working of some
    powerful engine, show signs of life...His success
    would terrify the artist he would rush
    away...hope that...this thing...would subside
    into dead matter...he opens his eyes behold the
    horrid thing stands at his bedside, opening his
    curtains...The next morning Mary realized she had
    found her story and began writing the lines that
    open Chapter IV of Frankenstein - "It was on a
    dreary night in November"- She completed the
    novel in May of 1817 and is was published January
    1, 1818.

11
Literary sources of Frankenstein
  • Frankenstein is considered to be the
    greatest Gothic Romantic Novel. It is also
    generally thought of as the first science fiction
    novel. The idea for the novel arose in the summer
    of 1816 when Mary Shelley was staying at Lord
    Byron's villa in Geneva Switzerland. Not only did
    Mary incorporate experiences from that summer
    into her novel, she also utilized the sources
    that she had been reading and studying. Two in
    particular were the Metamorphoses by Ovid and
    Paradise Lost by Milton.
  • It is believed that Mary studied Ovid in
    April and May of 1815. The major element that
    Ovid supplied to the theme of Frankenstein, was
    his presentation of the Prometheus legend. This
    is acknowledged in the subtitle Frankenstein, Or
    the Modern Prometheus.
  • The second important literary influence was
    Paradise Lost by Milton. The influence of
    Milton's Paradise Lost can be seen directly from
    the epigraph of the 1818 edition of Frankenstein.
  • "Did I request thee, Maker from my clay to
    mould me man? Did I solicit thee, from darkness
    to promote me?"
  • The spirit of Paradise Lost permeates
    Frankenstein throughout the novel. On page 240
    the monster says
  • "The fallen angel becomes a malignant
    devil. Yet even that enemy of God and man had
    friends and associates in his desolation I am
    alone"
  • Three parallel themes from the two works
    arise from these quotes
  • - the moulding of a living being from clay
  • - the growth of malice and the desire for
    revenge
  • - the isolation of the hostile being and
    the consequent increase of his hostility
  • It is easy to establish Mary Shelley's
    knowledge of Paradise Lost. The work was admired
    in the Godwin household. Mary and Percy read it
    in 1815 and again in November 1816. Her journal
    states that Shelley read it aloud while she was
    writing Frankenstein.

12
  • She even incorporated Paradise Lost into the
    novel by having it be one of the three works that
    the monster studied. The monster found a
    correlation between his condition and and an
    aspect of the novel and stated
  • "Like Adam, I was apparently united by no
    link to any other human being...I was wretched,
    helpless and alone. Many times I considered Satan
    as the fitter emblem of my condition (pg.
    135-136)
  • Other echoes of Paradise Lost are as
    follows
  • Frankenstein hopes to be the source of a new
    species, but ironically his creature evolves into
    a self-acknowleged Satan who swears eternal
    revenge and war upon his creator and all the
    human race. The monster reflects that hell is an
    internal condition which is produced and
    increased through loneliness. His only salvation
    is the creation of a mate, his Eve.
  • In the later part of the book, Frankenstein
    refers to the monster in terms used in Paradise
    Lost the fiend, the demon, the devil, and
    adversary. Both master and creature are torn by
    their internal conflicts from misapplied
    knowledge and their sense of isolation.

13
Main characters
  • Victor Frankenstein
  • As a young child, it could be said that
    Victor Frankenstein is indulged and spoilt by his
    parents, and later on by his adopted sister,
    Elizabeth and his friend, Henry Clerval. In the
    first chapter, as Frankenstein is recounting his
    story to the mariner, Walton, we learn that he
    was born into a wealthy family from Geneva, and
    lived in Italy for the first part of his life.
    His mother was the daughter of his fathers
    friend, and, therefore much younger than he. We
    are told that she was caring and dutiful, that
    she, "possessed a mind of an uncommon mould"
    (page 32), and had nursed and kept her own father
    during his illness until his death.
    Frankensteins parents are very much in love, and
    he was an only child for the first five years.
    Victors first recollections are of his,
    "mothers tender caresses", and his, "fathers
    smile of benevolent pleasure" (page 33). They
    regard him as being, "bestowed on them by
    heaven", and recognise that his future, "was in
    their hands to direct to happiness or misery". He
    also tells Walton that his mother and father felt
    that they, "owed" something to him because they
    had given him life.
  • At the age of seven, having moved to Geneva
    with his family, he meets Henry Clerval with whom
    he becomes great friends, although it is
    interesting to note that he chooses not to mix
    with the other local children. At the beginning
    of chapter two, Victor describes his childhood
    thus
  • No human being could have passed a happier
    childhood than myself. My parents were possessed
    by the very spirit of kindness and indulgence. We
    felt that they were not the tyrants to rule our
    lot according to their caprice, but the agents
    and creators of all the many delights which we
    enjoyed. (page 37) But even though he was growing
    up in what could be perceived as an idyllic
    family, he comments to Walton that, "My temper
    was sometimes violent and my passions vehement"
    (page 37). He was also prone to, "become sullen"
    (page 37), but Elizabeth seems always to have
    been ready to soothe and comfort him, to,
    "subdue", him, "to a semblance of her own
    gentleness." (page 37) , and whilst Clerval is
    enthusiastically learning all he could about
    life, and the world around him, Victor is
    interested only in "the physical secrets of the
    world." .

14
  • We can see that Victor is very much left to
    his own devices without much direction from his
    parents, when he retells the events when, at the
    age of thirteen he found a book by Cornelius
    Agrippa which sparked his interest in alchemy.
    Even he recognises that his father should have
    given him more guidance when he tells how his
    father, "looked carelessly at the title page"
    (page 38), and merely dismissed the work as, "sad
    trash." (page 38) . He states that, if instead,
    his father had taken the time to explain that
    alchemy had been disproved, then, "It is even
    possible that the train of my ideas would never
    have received the fatal impulse that led to my
    ruin." (page 38-39). It seems that his father is
    not interested enough in what his son is
    studying, and takes little notice of what he is
    doing. Frankenstein says of himself, "I was to a
    great degree, self taught" (page 39), and that,
  • My father was not scientific, and I was
    left to struggle with a childs blindness added
    to a students thirst for knowledge. (page 39).
  • So without any supervision, he engrosses
    himself in his studies, concentrating on the more
    altruistic side of alchemy - the secret of
    eternal life. Frankensteins first experience of
    real sadness comes when he is seventeen and his
    mother dies having contracted scarlet fever
    whilst nursing Elizabeth back to health. We are
    told that, "her countenance expressed affection
    even in death."., and he describes death as,
    "that most irrepairable evil". This event
    appears to make him even more determined to find
    a cure for this "evil". There is now only
    Elizabeth to give a feminine balance to his life,
    but he leaves for university with Clerval, having
    agreed to his mothers deathbed wish that he and
    Elizabeth would one day marry.
  • At university in Ingolstadt he is persuaded
    that alchemy has been superseded by natural
    philosophy, and his aptitude for science
    impresses both students and tutors alike.
    However, having decided to try and create life by
    scientific methods, he isolates himself from any
    friendly support and advice he may have received
    from Clerval, and the professional opinions of
    his tutors. He is, of course, away from his
    family, and so works alone.

15
  • Shelley could be seen to be saying through
    Frankensteins tale, that parents love alone is
    not enough for a childs healthy development.
    Unless love is given together with discipline and
    guidance, the child is unable to develop into a
    well rounded adult who can be assimilated into
    the wider society, and have a balanced view of
    themselves and the world around them. Not only
    does Victor appear to be selfish and too
    introspective, he seems never to mature and
    develop self discipline, as his obsessional
    nature seems to show. The cosseting he has
    received as a child has led him to grow into
    adulthood with no true sense of responsibility
    for his actions. This is highlighted when, having
    created the creature, on seeing the contrast
    between his dream and the reality of the,
    ""..miserable monster."(page 57), he flees from
    his apartment, and when, on returning, he
    realises that the creature has escaped, he
    remarks, "I clapped my hands for joy" (page 60).
    It is not until the desperate and unhappy
    creature has already murdered his young brother,
    William, and tells him his story, begging for a
    mate, that Frankenstein briefly feels the
    slightest responsibility for him. It is at this
    point in the novel that he thinks to himself,
  • and did I not as his maker, owe him all the
    portion of happiness that it was in my power to
    bestow?
  • Shelley seems also to be showing the reader
    that self-education is not always a good thing.
    Unless supervised, the autodidact is in danger of
    gaining knowledge in a very narrow field, for
    instance, Frankensteins learning seems to be
    solely focused on science, without any education
    in morals, the arts, or social skills which would
    have helped him to mature and be a more social
    and compassionate individual.

16
  • The Monster
  • The creatures childhood is condensed
    into a matter of months. His first experience of
    Victor, his parent and maker is one of rejection,
    and this sets the pattern for his life. We are
    told that, on being born, the creature made his
    way to Frankensteins bedside,
  • He held up the curtain of the bed and his
    eyes, if eyes they may be called, were fixed on
    me. His jaws opened, and he muttered some
    inarticulate sounds, while a grin wrinkled his
    cheeks. He might have spoken, but I did not hear
    one hand was stretched out, seemingly to detain
    me (page 57)
  • In all probability, the creature was
    reaching out, as a small child does to their
    mother, but his ugly appearance only frightened
    Victor into running away.
  • With no one to love him or care for him,
    the creature spends his first days in the forest
    near Ingolstadt. Through his narrative, we learn
    that, at first he was like an abandoned baby,
    alone, and in his own words
  • I knew, and could distinguish nothing but
    feeling pain invade me on all sides, I sat down
    and wept. (page 99)
  • At this point in his life, he has only a
    basic sensory awareness, and we are told,
  • No distinct ideas occupied my mind all was
    confused. I felt light and hunger, and thirst,
    and darkness innumerable sounds rang in my ears,
    and on all sides various scents saluted me the
    only object that I could distinguish was the
    bright moon, and I fixed my eyes on that with
    pleasure. (page 100).
  • Eventually he learns that drinking from the
    stream will quench his thirst, eating nuts and
    berries will sate his hunger, and he can be
    shaded by the trees. He has an instinctive
    appreciation for nature, and even tries to mimic
    the birdsong that give him so much pleasure, but
    the, "uncouth and inarticulate sounds" (page 100)
    that he utters, frighten him into silence. The
    creature discovers an abandoned fire and, just as
    a young unsupervised child would, he learns about
    its heat by putting his hand into it and feeling
    the pain of the burn. However, he also finds it
    can keep him warm, and that nuts and berries
    taste good when cooked in it. At this stage, he
    still has no idea or curiosity about his
    appearance, and is therefore surprised when his
    arrival at a shepherds hut causes the old man to
    run away in terror. His next encounter with
    humans is even more negative than the last, and
    he is pelted with stones when he enters a
    village. Again, he is puzzled by peoples
    reactions to him.

17
  • This last experience teaches him to be
    cautious of interaction with humans, and he
    decides to take refuge in a hovel which is built
    onto the back of a forest hut, but not to make
    his presence there known to the inhabitants. The
    first thing he learns about people is their,
    "barbarity" (page 103). From his position in the
    hovel, through a crevice, he can observe the
    family who live in the hut. It is during this
    period in his life that most of his education
    takes place. He first appreciates the beauty of
    M. De Lacey, the old man, with his, "silver hair
    and benevolent countenance" (page 104), and that
    of Agatha, his daughter, who is described as a,
    "fair creature." With, "gentle manners" (page
    104). He sees the love and care that the family
    show towards each other, and watching them
    together, he also feels emotions which he has not
    experienced before. When Agatha is upset and her
    father comforts her, the creature recalls that
    he,
  • felt sensations of a peculiar and
    overpowering nature they were a mixture of pain
    and pleasure, such as I had never before
    experienced, either from hunger or cold, warmth
    or food" (page 104)

18
  • At this moment he has begun to develop more
    sophisticated emotions as he becomes aware of
    others, and feels compassion, sharing their joy
    and sorrow. His emotions are no longer purely
    based on his own basic needs and his senses. Just
    as a small child learns about their relationships
    with others, the creature also learns, although
    from a distance.
  • The creature spends many months in the
    hovel, and learns to speak, partly by listening
    to the De Laceys, and then by listening to the
    French instruction that they give to Safie.
    Whereas, in the beginning his education had been,
    for the most part experiential, he is now able to
    follow these lessons. It is once he has learned
    to read, that that his thoughts and ideas about
    the world he has found himself in, start to form.
    He has found three books in the forest
    Plutarch's 'Lives', 'The Sorrows of Werter' by
    Goethe, and Milton's 'Paradise Lost'. The
    creature learns something different about life
    from each book. In 'Paradise Lost', he can see
    similarities between himself and Adam, and is
    introduced to the idea of God, the Christian
    myth, and good and evil. He realises that wealth
    and social standing, are most highly prized in
    society, from Plutarch's 'Lives', and in Goethe's
    work, he reads that suicide can be an option for
    a desperately unhappy person. In the same way
    that Frankenstein is self educated, the creature
    is also and, like his creator, he is learning in
    a vacuum, with no other influences to balance his
    views.
  • The creature never manages to interact
    positively with others or find friendship, and we
    can see his self esteem sink lower and lower, the
    more he is rejected, and becomes lonelier and
    more alienated from society. It is at this that
    eventually changes him from a kind, affectionate,
    and reasonable being, to a bitter murderer. He
    tells Frankenstein,
  • I am malicious because I am miserable. Am I
    not shunned and hated by all mankind? You, my
    creator, would tear me to pieces, and triumph
    remember that and tell me why I should pity man
    more than he pities me? You would not call it
    murder, if you could precipitate me into one of
    those ice-rifts, and destroy my frame, the work
    of your own hands. Shall I respect man when he
    condemns me? Let him live with me in an
    interchange of kindness and, instead of injury I
    would bestow every benefit upon him with tears of
    gratitude at his acceptance. (page 140).

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  • It could be suggested that his education
    and intellect have betrayed him. They have served
    only to highlight his misery. His understanding
    of his predicament, and how he falls short of
    society's norms and aspirations, can only make
    him more wretched. Apart from hearing his voice
    when trying to sing, he no real self awareness
    until, like a perverse Narcissus, he sees his
    reflection in a pool, and becomes, "fully
    convinced that I was in reality the monster I am"
    (page 110). Now he can see himself as others see
    him. Through reading, his knowledge of man's
    capacity for evil gives him a more realistic view
    of society, and his place in it. Like Adam and
    Eve and their consequent banishment from the
    Garden of Eden after eating from the tree of
    knowledge , he has developed from a 'noble
    savage', as unselfconscious and close to nature
    as an animal, to acquiring knowledge and the loss
    of innocence that accompanies it. He has, in
    effect, been cast out like Adam and Eve before
    him.

20
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