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. The monster archetype in both modern and ancient literature has been shaped to benefit the protagonist, which is depicted with the conversion of the protagonist to the hero, the element of the climax, and its important role of protection.
Many times throughout western literature, monsters are portrayed as a threat to the existence of humanity. In Grendel by John Gardner and Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, this idea is skewed by the actions of their respective monsters. Both of these novels captivate the reader by having a monster narrate the story, which is uncommon in many works of literature. Although in Frankenstein the reader only witnesses the monster as a narrator once, it has a profound impact on the overall storyline of the book. In Grendel, the book is entirely narrated by Grendel, so the reader adapts to the idea of the main character being a monster.
L. Andrew Cooper and Brandy Ball Blake are analytical when explaining the origins of monsters and how every monster ever told in a tall tale or written in a novel, represents good or bad omens. All of the monsters described were analyzed in depth but left the door open to questions about how monsters have changed over the past hundred years. For example, monsters told in stories by the elderly hundreds of years ago were warnings about the dangers that could occur when tampering with nature or with gods. In Greek mythology, almost all stories that talked about mortals, demigods, and monsters, sent a message to the empire of Greece to respect and obey the gods in order for the god to have mercy on them. For example, the story of Arachne the weaver and Athena explained how challenging a god could end in a fatal decision.
Described in Cohen’s essay, is the extensive insight into how monsters are defined. He says that these monsters are defined by seven different aspects having to do with their appearance, character, or representation. Cohen’s first point is that monsters are always representations or symbols of a particular culture. They are made to life because of emotions or environment in that culture. He states, “The monster is born only at this metaphoric crossroads, as an embodiment of certain cultural moment--- of a time, a feeling, and a face” (Cohen).
A writer named Nikita Gill once said “When you see a monster next, always remember this. Do not fear the thing before you. Fear the thing that created it instead.” This quote can be related to the novel Frankenstein where instead of the actual creature being perceived as the monster, the person who created it deserves to be called one. Using the archetypal lens, Victor can be seen as the real monster in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein from his cruel characteristics, continuous patterns of monstrosity, as well as symbols and themes involving nature.
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.
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).
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.
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.
The monster believes that he is like Satan. He once was good, saving a young girl from drowning, but like Satan, he has fallen into the pits of hell. Where he consistently seeks revenge on Victor, his creator, who is seen as an allusion to God. This relationship between the monster and its creator, can be viewed as a parallel to God and Adam/Satan. Like Adam, he was created by God (Victor), and craves for a companion, just like the monster, who constantly implies that, “I am alone.
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
Since the beginning of time, heroes in society have constantly changed. As society changed their perception of people, modern-day heroes such as Superman and Batman differ much from the heroes of Anglo-Saxon times like Beowulf. Characteristics of monsters within this time interval has also changed with society’s views. The element of fear affects our perception in distinguishing a hero from a monster.
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.
1) According to the film, the standard metaphor for a corporation is that of an apple within a barrel where most apples are good and just a few bad. Several CEO’s offered alternative metaphors, such as pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, a sports team, family unity, a telephone system, or an eagle. Less flattering metaphors are that of a devouring monster, a whale, or the Frankenstein monster. Are any of these metaphors more appropriate than others?