Volume 2, Chapter 8: The Girl in the Woods

How do the events of Volume 2, Chapter 8 effect the creation’s perception of the world?

In Volume 2, Chapter 8 we learn of the creation’s journey through the forest as he makes his way to Geneva. As he finally reconciles to a life of seeking revenge upon his creator, he is offered one final opportunity to prove his natural benevolence to mankind. Rather than allowing a young girl to drown in a river in the woods, the creation jumps to her rescue. However rather than being accepted by mankind, he is once again rejected; a friend of the young girl fires shots at him, seriously wounding him.

This is a key moment within the text as it uncovers much about the creation’s perception of the world. Not only has he been rejected by his creator but he has also been driven from villages as a result of his physical appearance. Despite having acquired the language he needs to express himself and learning the ways of human life by watching the family from his hovel, he is still unable to find acceptance within the world. When one final opportunity arises, an opportunity to be seen not only as a benevolent creature but as a hero, he is rejected once more despite having saved a human life.


After facing endless rejection, how far is society culpable for the creation’s increasing monstrosity?

The Girl in the Woods

Homework: Frankenstein and Difference

Due: Monday 15th December


1) Complete a summary of Volume 1 and Volume 2

2) Complete a column of your choice from the task sheet below.

How the monster is perceived as different is important to our understanding of the creation’s growth as a living thing. He learns from experience and is now able to articulate how the world’s initial reactions to him have led him to feel not only insecure, but desiring companionship.

As the monster retells the events of his meeting with the old man, we must consider how responsible we are for the monsters that we create.

Difference in Frankenstein

Volume 2, Chapter 7: Monster by nature or nurture?

In Volume 2, Chapter 7 the creation retells how he began to interpret the world through the literature he had access too. He compares himself to Adam – the perfect figure who was nurtured by his creator – and laments his own ugly form and abandonment. He then retells his readings of Frankenstein’s own scientific diary. Within the Chapter, the reader learns how the creature developed his understanding of the world. It enables us to come to a greater understanding of the true consequences of what he done.

As the creation continues to tell his story, we begin to explore what it truly means to be alive. The reader almost begins to feel pity for the reader. But why would Shelley create this effect in a world where science is seen as the saviour of humanity?


Frankenstein Chapter Summary Deadlines

To accompany our accelerated reading of Frankenstein in class, you will need to have completed the following chapter summaries by the deadlines below. Remember, your chapter summaries should have the following headings:

Narrative Summary

Thematic Summary

Key Quotation/s Explained


The deadlines:

  • Volume 1 and Volume 2, Chapters 1-6: Monday 8th December
  • Volume 2, Chapters 7-9: Thursday 11th December
  • Volume 3, Chapters 1-4: Monday 15th December
  • Volume 3, Chapters 5-7: Thursday 18th December

Chapter 7: Justine’s Trial

How does the moment of Justine’s sentencing affect our judgement of Frankenstein’s character?

In Chapter 6 and Chapter 7, Frankenstein is confronted with the consequences of his creation as the events surrounding the death of his brother William become clear. Elizabeth’s passionate defence of Justine’s character appears to do little toward countering Justine’s possession of William’s locket. On the eve before her sentencing, Justine confesses to the murder of William although it becomes clear that the confession is false.

As Justine is sentenced to death on the scaffold, Frankenstein’s nightmare becomes a reality as he finds himself confronted with the evil of his creation within his own family. However, how far should Frankenstein feel responsible for the deaths of William and Justine? And how do these events affect our understanding of Frankenstein’s character?

The tasks within this lesson work towards an extended response to the central question. A response to this synthesis task must be submitted by Friday 28th November.

Chapter 7-Justine’s Trial

Homework: Pathetic Fallacy

Due: Thursday 20th November

Today we took a brief interlude to discuss the pathetic fallacy in Chapter 4 of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. I would like you to demonstrate your understanding by providing a detailed answer to the following question:

How does Mary Shelley use pathetic fallacy to increase our understanding of the moment the monster is created?

Below you will find the beginnings of the model answer we discussed in class today. I require this level of detail within your own response as a minimum:

Within Chapter 4, Mary Shelley uses pathetic fallacy to increase the sense of foreboding about the future of the monster. For example, Shelley sets the moment of the monster’s creation on ‘a dreary night of November’. The month of November connotes the Autumn season within which the life of Spring and Summer begins to fade and is replaced by the barren winter months. As such, Shelley strengthens the connections between the moment of the monster’s creation with the impending doom of all mankind. As November is a tipping point, whereby natural life succumbs to death, the moment of the monster’s creation also becomes a tipping point for natural order of the world. By adding that the moment takes place on a ‘dreary night’, Shelley also suggests that…

Example Chapter Summary

By Monday 24th November, you must have completed your own chapter summaries from the Prologue to Chapter 6 of Frankenstein. You must complete your own summaries, rather than finding them online in order to develop the individuality of your response.

Please find an example chapter summary below:


Summary of Narrative:

In the Prologue, we are introduced to the character of Robert Walton through a series of letters he writes to his sister, ‘Mrs Saville‘.

The letters detail his voyage of discovery and his enthusiasm for the pursuit of knowledge. His ship becomes trapped in the snow and ice and the men grow restless. He becomes concerned that a mutiny might occur. He longs for a male companion.

He sees a large figure in the distance being pulled by a sledge. We later understand this to be Frankenstein’s monster. This figure is followed some time after by a man who is weak and weather beaten. We learn that this is Victor Frankenstein. Walton takes an immediate liking to Victor. As the men become close, and Frankenstein recovers, Frankenstein begins to tell his story.

Summary of Themes:

Companionship: Robert Walton seeks a companion with whom he can share his passions with.

Pursuit of Knowledge: Robert Walton discusses his desire to progress the whole of human-kind through his discovery. He believes that he could be instrumental in the furtherance of society through his work.

Key Quotations:

‘How can I see so noble a creature destroyed by misery without feeling the most poignant grief?’

This rhetorical question communicates Robert Walton’s immediate affinity toward Frankenstein. His use of the word ‘creature’ appears to dehumanize Victor and draws parallels between his character and that of the monster. It emphasizes our natural feeling of care for others.

Frankenstein: Chapter 4

Why does Frankenstein feel anxious by the end of Chapter 4?

This week we will be turning our attention to the theme of morality. 

As Victor Frankenstein turns his attention towards his human experiments, his obsession for his work begins to take its toll physically and mentally. He fears nothing. Yet once the physical form of his monster is constructed, an anxiety begins to grow. But why…?

Chapter 4: Human Experiments