Grendel's Human Nature

518 Words3 Pages
The actions of others is what absolutely counts. What any creature does determine what he is and how he thinks of himself. In the novel known as Grendel, written by John Gardner, Grendel has a dynamic self-image of himself since he was slaughter people. Grendel is what many psychologist would declare to be a sociopath. For he has no remorse and he is anti-social. Grendel had no one to call a "comrade" or a "friend", but whatever relationship he had damaged his self image. His feelings about himself could not have been very well. However, Grendel kept changing himself after forming some relationship,especially from after he had learned something new from his relationship. The relationships that affected him the most were with human creatures…show more content…
Grendel, when first meeting the wise and old dragon learned how the humans felt when he had confronted them. The Dragon explained that the fear is "how they feel when they see" him (Gardner 60). Grendel felt a little shame, so for the first time, considered how they, the humans, must have felt after seeing a strange creature. Out of guilt, he wants to no longer wants scare them for pleasure or for sport; he only wants to eat the occasional few, so they will not starve from overpopulation. His brief thoughts and consideration of the human 's feeling reveal how sensitive and "humane" he really was. Furthermore, early in the novel, Grendel learns of a man, known as the Shaper, who sings to entertain the folks in the Mead Halls. The Shaper sings of all sorts of stories and myths to give the people hope of something greater in the next life. He also sang of Grendel 's kind, which is "the terrible race God cursed" (Gardner 51). Grendel desperately wanted to believe this; he wanted to be part of the cursed creatures that are offsprings of Cain. This may give him some sort of purpose in life. Additionally, the human that he had a "relationship", which that affected him the most, was with Hrothgar 's wife, Wealhtheow. Grendel had seen Wealhtheow when her brother, Hrothgar 's rival, wanted to make peace, so he offered Wealhtheow as his peace offering. There was no real relationship that developed between them, but, like with the Shaper, Grendel got obsessed. Her beauty made him temporarily stop the slaughter of innocent humans. Her presence made him rethink about what he was doing. He felt that she was on a higher class and was greater than himself. All he wanted, at least for that moment, was to do anything to please her. His whole psyche changed for, and he began to stalk her constantly because he was hypnotized by her beauty. With any of his relationship, Grendel learned something knew. It would enlighten him and confuse him. Grendel is
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