Compare and contrast the Frankenstein novel and Coleridge's rime of the ancient mariner in terms of narrative voice, theme and literary techniques

Essay by valtanUniversity, Bachelor's April 2007

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Mary Shelley and Samuel Taylor Coleridge are two established writers of the Romantic era. Works by both writers are unique in many ways. The profound influence of Coleridge's " The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere" is reflected in Shelly's "Frankenstein" in terms of narrative structure, themes and literary techniques. This essay will compare and contrast the "Frankenstein" extract and the poem, "The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere" in three aspects, namely the narrating voice, the themes and the literary techniques used.

In the "Frankenstein" passage, Victor's creation, the creature, is the narrator. Here, a framed narrative is presented by the creature to allow his side of the story to be heard as he attempts to gain self-definition and redemption of his guilt by casting himself as the real victim to all the sufferings caused by Victor. The creature's first person narration about how he was once "nourished with high thoughts of honour and devotion" was forced to experience the tormenting hardships of being "an abortion, to be spurned at, and kicked, trampled on" aims to achieve reader's sympathy and hopes to conjure the reader's reconsideration of who the real monstrous character is in the novel.

The creature's repetitive description of his initial innocent desire to be accepted by the society, his guilt towards his crimes and the injustice done to him by the society engages the reader more directly with his feelings of misery and sufferings.

Similarly for the poem extract, framed narrative is also being engaged. Two narrative voices are presented here. The first stanza of the extract is narrated by the mariner in a first person's perspective. In his narration, he is doing the teachings of his lessons on his voyages, telling the wedding guest how to lead a good life with God and to...