Grendal and Existentialism Essay

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Gardner chose to expose the philosophical thought of existential philosophy in his novel. Grendel. Grendel. the chief character. shows cogent evidence of back uping these thoughts. Existentialism related to the basic thought of individuality. in which each person is an stray being excessively which is cast into an foreign existence. In this literary theory. it is believed that the universe possesses no built-in human truth. value or significance. Existentialists believe that there is no God and no Eden. and Gardner uses this belief in his novel “They sense that. of class. from clip to clip ; have uneasy feelings that all they live by is nonsensical.

They have dim apprehensivenesss that such propositions as ‘God does non exist’ are slightly doubtful at least in comparing with statements like ‘All carnivorous cattles eat meat. ’” ( pg 64-65 ) Detecting from a different point of view. this kingdom of idea gives persons freedom to make as they please. without possessing any external force per unit areas. In a universe without sense. all picks are possible. One has the freedom to do each determination based on one’s ain personal codification of moralss and committedness to one’s ego. as opposed to being swayed by social force per unit areas or spiritual beliefs.

This rule gives people sovereignty ; it makes people happy cognizing they have no duties in life. Grendel views the universe as an unfastened infinite of “nothingness” to which he entered. to which the void where it must stop. He comes to the realisation that his ain. along with every other persons being is simply merely a flash in clip. “in a billion billion billion old ages. everything will hold come and gone several times. in assorted forms” ( page70 ) .

He possesses the belief that all work forces are mechanical. He is given the chance to detect and analyze them. presenting him to the thought of conformance. with the desire that he excessively can happen significance in this universe. At the beginning of the fresh Grendel demonstrates pure artlessness. With the narrative of his first brush with work forces. after acquiring his pes stuck in a cleft where two old tree short pantss joined he yells “Mama! Waa! Waa! ” . with an pressing demand to specify things and happen a significance for himself.

But as the novel progresses. Grendel turns into a monster and taking up the thoughts that “the universe [ is ] nil: a mechanical pandemonium of insouciant. beastly hostility on which we doltishly enforce our hopes and fears” ( 21-22 ) . It is because of events like this that Grendel started to take existentialist positions on the universe. so when he met the firedrake these beliefs started to heighten. When the firedrake enters the secret plan. he convinces Grendel to assail King Hrothgar’s Mead Hall. in hopes of possessing a intent and suiting into the universe. leting him to temporarily be with world.

Following the incident. he continues to possess the ability to believe for himself. he detaches his ideas from his old determinations to see the state of affairs objectively. In making so he comes to the realisation that he will ne’er engage with this universe wholly and feels trapped and empty. like a monster with visions of himself killing the work forces. Fighting to maintain his ain saneness. Grendel comes to the realisation he can non go on to populate his life this manner. recognizing he is in complete isolation.

It is non until his depression. that he comes to the realisation he does non desire to populate the life of a monster. doing the determination to decline to kill Unferth every bit good as Wealtheow. recognizing it had no intent. traveling against his old function. with great desire to give his life significance. However. it is non until he. the unstoppable monster. resignations to Beowulf. leting him to rend his arm from his socket. giving in to his “design. ” when he is able to achieve true felicity. Grendel’s desire for significance goes against all beliefs of existential philosophy.

From the beginning of the novel. to the center. and all the manner to the terminal. we see Grendel go through many different alterations. The ground he is an existential philosopher in the center of the novel is because he kills with no significance. There is no intent for his putting to deaths ; he is merely confused with life and does what others tell him. which is to kill. Finally when Grendel starts believing for himself he realizes that there is no intent to killing. this is when he eventually decides he does non desire to be a monster. A true monster discoveries joy out of his putting to deaths and thinks of it as a triumph. which is what genuinely proves Grendel is non a monster.