ver time, humans have always created stories and conjured up personifications of evil to explain the unknown - whether it was the myth of the vampire, spurred on by Bram Stoker’s Dracula and the receding of skin that causes a corpse’s nails to appear longer, or the myth of Wendigos, a create of evil in Native American culture. Many cultures and civilizations, new and old, have their fairytales and monsters in the dark, to explain the unknown. We see this in Beowulf, where Grendel is a representation of Satanic evil in the Bible due to the heavy influence of faith in Germanic warrior society, as opposed to monsters in modern society such as the zombie, which is a reflection of evolving political fears. In Beowulf, the first antagonist the reader
Molly Childree Fleischbein EH 102.147 Draft February 5,2018 Our world is full of monsters, some imaginary, but most are legitimate and terrifying. In his text “Monster Culture (Seven Theses)”, Jeffery Jerome Cohen examines the use of monsters in literate and cinema. Cohen makes the claim that the use of monsters, historically and presently, in forms of entertainment symbolizes more than just the fear they instill in audiences. A monster is no longer just a monster.
The monster archetype has been one of the most riveting archetypes that surrounds the concept of ‘evil’. It has been portrayed as a supernatural creature with grotesque features that normally brings disruption to the city and needs to be tamed or controlled to bring once again peace to the story. Due to this, it is most commonly depicted with a negative connotation, and with the idea of horror and fear. The monster has been present since the bible, which was written approximately 3,400 years ago, with the anecdote of Goliath. It has remained with its primary role of converting the protagonist into a hero and providing fear to the storyline.
In Jeffrey Jerome Cohen’s Monster Culture (Seven Thesis), Cohen analyzes the psychology behind monsters and how, rather than being a monstrous beast for the protagonist of the story to play against, “the monster signifies something other than itself”. Cohen makes the claim that by analyzing monsters in mythology and stories, you can learn much about the culture that gave rise to them. In Thesis 1 of Monster Culture, Cohen proposes that “the monster’s body literally incorporates fear, desire, anxiety, and fantasy”, specifically the fear, desire and anxiety of the cultures that gave rise to it;; fFor example, vVampires, undead, represent a fear of death. Monsters are born of an intense fear, desire, or internal conflict, “at this metaphorical
These creatures can have their origin in the supernatural realm or come about through ominous scientific experiments, often times the two are very hard to differentiate(cf. Hurley 192). A popular reading of this trope is the notion of repressed anxieties and desires manifesting themselves in the form of monsters (cf. Dryden 20, cf. Halberstam 9).
To answer the question of “Who is the monster?” when talking about “War of the worlds” and “Monsters”, one must understand what a monster is. A monster is not simply a creature so ugly or monstrous it frightens people, it can also be defined as a person or thing who excites horror by wickedness or cruelty. This second definition establishes that we, humans, can be classed as a monster even if we do not fit the stereotypical description of what a monster looks like. This question is an important
A genuine definition of a monster is an "imaginary creature that is typically large, ugly, and frightening," but in the poem Beowulf a monster has much more meaning than just an imaginary creature. Monsters were commonly used in stories written during the pagan times. Throughout the plot of ‘Beowulf,' the protagonist Beowulf faces many obstacles that include fighting monsters: Grendel, Grendel's mother, and a Dragon. The monsters in Beowulf are present for a substantial reason to contribute towards the story, and they are symbolic of many qualities in the Anglo-Saxon culture.
While walking through Africa snakes began to fall from Medusa’s head; she is the reason there are venomous snakes in Africa. Eventually death came to meet her in the form of the hero Perseus. After he had cut off her head a beautiful, winged horse named Pegasus sprang from her neck. Of course, monsters aren’t exclusive to Greece, monsters are belived all around the world.
Comparing society in Beowulf and society in Frankenstein is like comparing a simple farm to the processing plant; futuristic and totally dissimilar. Although, the core ‘monsters’ are unchanged; grotesque, horrifyingly pagan-esque beings of the dark that strike terror in to the hearts of even the stoutest of fighters and the sanest of men. In the Christian and Medieval world, monsters were human beings with an unnatural birth or a birth deformity (Stitt, 2003). The term ‘monster’ derives from the Latin term ‘monere’ which means ‘To warn’ or ‘to advise’ and ‘monstrum’ which is ‘a sign or portent that disrupts the natural order as evidence of divine displeasure’. The aspect of ‘Divine Displeasure’ is attributed almost perfectly to Grendel, the monster of Beowulf and the terror of Hrothgar.
Monsters are born in literature through their words, origins, thoughts, and actions. Into Thin Air, by Jon Krakauer, as well as Burton Raffel’s Beowulf, contain such monsters that are large impediments to the hero’s quest. Also the expeditions or quests are affected in terms of intimidation by the monsters who are always overwhelming at first to the pessimistic eye such as how the Israelites viewed Goliath, the Philistine, when David went to fight him. A monster’s thoughts, origins, and words are often used to construct the description of monstrosity in literature and are very critical.
At first glance, the novel Dracula by Bram Stoker appears to be a typical gothic horror novel set in the late 1890s that gives readers an exciting look into the fight between good and evil. Upon closer inspection, it becomes apparent that Dracula is a statement piece about gender roles and expectations for men and women during the Victorian age. Looking at the personalities, actions, and character development of each of the characters in Dracula bring to light startling revelations about Victorian society and how Stoker viewed the roles of men and women during this time period. To really understand Dracula, it is important to note that this novel was written during a time “of political and social upheaval, with anxieties not just about the
Vampires have been a common monster used in horror literature; dating back to the 18th century. These creatures have been able to make an identity for themselves within the genre. For years authors have been able to take the essence of the vampire’s identity and ability by turning it into something new. The reinvention allows for there to be a fresh new take on the vampire’s identity and ability. The original template for a vampire has been created through Bram Stokers, Dracula.
Monsters are always a big part of stories. Usually they are an Antagonist of a story blocking the hero from completing his/her quest showing qualities of being powerful, immoral, and determined. Beowulf and the Hobbit have good examples of monsters in their stories. Beowulf is about a man who is the strongest there is, the nicest, and the most intelligent defeating great threats to kingdoms. There are three main antagonists in beowulf, Grendel, the troll wife, and the dragon.
Throughout this chapter the two authors (Maasik and Solomon), point out how far popular culture has come. From the early 70’s, all the way to the early 2000’s. Maasik makes a great point in saying how we’ve changed the way we view Vampires now than we did back in the 60’s. Rather than blood thirsty monsters, we’ve turned them into loveable