You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go.
-Dr. Seuss

Thursday, September 12, 2013


"The Invisible Man" by H.G. Wells

1. Briefly summarize the plot of the novel you read according to the elements of plot you've learned in past courses (exposition, inciting incident, etc.).  Explain how the narrative fulfills the author's purpose (based on your well-informed interpretation of same).

The novel takes place in England in 1890. The exposition begins with the stranger Griffin moving to a small inn in Iping. His straightforwardness and rudeness allow the reader to quickly understand the king of character he is. The conflict is that Griffin is invisible and does not really know how to cope with his situation. Nobody understands his persona, yet he does not attempt to help anyone understand him. He goes from bad to worse. He goes from being confused for being invisible to wanting to use his invisibility for the bad. The climax is when Dr. Kemp one of Griffin’s professors in college betrayed him by calling the police on him. The resolution is when the police catch Griffin and kill him.

2. Succinctly describe the theme of the novel. Avoid cliches.

In my opinion the theme of the novel is fear of the unkown. Many people in our society are creatures of habit, they do not like too much change. It is quite ironic considering that change is constant. The characters and people in the novel wanted to finish Griffin because he was invisible. There are others such themes like science within humanity and corruption and/or advantage of power.

3. Describe the author's tone. Include a minimum of three excerpts that illustrate your point(s).

*Mysterious: The title itself hints the reader that the novel will be a mystery. The first sentence of the novel also creates a scene of mistery and imagery for the reader.
 “The stranger came early in February, one wintry day, through a biting wind and a driving snow, the last snowfall of the year, over the down, walking as it seemed from Bramblehurst railway station, and carrying a little black portmanteau in his thickly gloved hand.”
*Whimsical: The whole novel in general is just plain odd. I mean just think about it a man who turned himself invisible with an experiment. “Then he put his open palm over his face and withdrew it. The centre of his face became a black cavity. “Here” he said. He stepped forward and handed Mrs. Hall something which she, staring at his metamorphosed face, accepted automatically. Then when she saw what it was, she screamed loudly, dropped it, and staggered back. The nose- it was the stranger’s nose!”
*accusatory/judgmental: Like I mentioned above people tend to fear what they do not know, more likely than not they accuse and judge those who are different.  “It’s strange perhaps, but it’s not a crime. Why am I assaulted by a policeman in this fashion? “Ah! That’s a different matter,” said Jeffers. “No doubt you are difficult to see In this light, but I got a warrant and it’s all correct. What I’m after ain’t no invisibility- It’s burglary. There’s a house been broken into and money took.”

4. Describe a minimum of ten literary elements/techniques you observed that strengthened your understanding of the author's purpose, the text's theme and/or your sense of the tone. For each, please include textual support to help illustrate the point for your readers. (Please include edition and page numbers for easy reference.) 

1. Imagery: Pg. 143 “ Kemp made three swift steps to the door, and forth-with the invisible man-his legs had vanished-sprang to his feet with a shout. Kemp flung the door open. As it opened, there came a sound of hurrying feet downstairs and voices. With a quick movement Kemp thrust the invisible man back, sprang aside, and slammed the door.”

2. Theme:  Back cover of the book. To entertain, Science and humanity, fear of the unknown etc… “My fantastic stories do not pretend to deal with possible things. They aim indeed only at the same amount of conviction as one gets in a gripping good dream.”  

3. Tone: Pg. 38 whimsical- “Then he put his open palm over his face and withdrew it. The centre of his face became a black cavity. “Here” he said. He stepped forward and handed Mrs. Hall something which she, staring at his metamorphosed face, accepted automatically. Then when she saw what it was, she screamed loudly, dropped it, and staggered back. The nose- it was the stranger’s nose!”

4. Point of view: Third person, almost like an omniscient point of view.
Pg. 45 “The eight chapter is exceedingly brief, and relates that Gibbins, the amateur naturalist of the district, while lying out on the spacious open downs without a soul within a couple of miles of him, as he thought and almost dozing, heard close to him the sound of a man coughing, sneezing, and then swearing savagely to himself…”

5. Hyperbole: The fact that the main character Griffin turned himself invisible with an experiment is ridiculous. There is no specific evidence that I could find of this in the book.

6. Characterization: Pg.3 “ It was the fact that all his forehead above his blue glasses was covered by a white bandage, and that another covered his ears, leaving not a scrap of his face exposed excepting only his pink, peaked nose. It was bright, pink, and shiny just as it had been at first. He wore a dark-brown velvet jacket with a high, black linen-lined collar turned up about his neck. The thick black hair, escaping as it could below and between the cross bandages, projected in curious tails and horns, giving him the strangest appearance conceivable.”

7. Foreshadowing: Pg. 141 “ You have told no one I am here?” he asked abruptly. Kemp hesitated. “That was implied,” he said.” The reader has an idea that something bad is going to happen because of the hesitation and insecurity of Kemp’s reply.

8. Personification: Pg. 32 “ –the bed-clothes gathered themselves together, leapt up suddenly into a sort of peak, and then jumped headlong over the bottom rail.”

9. Dialogue: Pg. 11 “The weather” – he began. “Why don’t you finish and go?” said the rigid figure, evidently in a state of painfully suppressed rage.  “All you’ve got to do is to fix the hour-hand on its axle. You’re simply hum-bugging.”

10. Setting: Iping, England Pg. 1 “A guest to stop at Iping in the wintertime was an unheard-of piece of luck…”


  1. Erica (:
    So let me get this straight, Griffin performed an experiment on himself that made him become invisible and people wanted to get rid of him because he was invisible right?
    Why do the police kill Griffin in the end?
    Overall good job! I like the fact that you used a series of different tones (along with examples) to describe the author's tone throughout the entire novel.

  2. Hey girl! This book seems so confusing, but i'm glad you were able to depict the novel easily! But I am also curious of why the police killed Griffin?
    Good job on analyzing the story :)

  3. Wow I love how you were able to find the deeper symbolism and meaning behind the fact that he was invisible. Thorough explanation and use of good quotes. Sums up the book nicely and quickly. Good Job!