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Frankenstein by Mary Shelley essay

Essay Topic:

An attempt to identificate the real “monster” of the novel: Viktor Frankenstein or his Creature.

Essay Questions:

Who is the real “monster” of the novel: Viktor Frankenstein or his Creature?

What was the life of the “monster” like?

What prevented Viktor Frankenstein from taking responsibility for his actions?

Thesis Statement:

Victor Frankenstein would have never converted his creature into a monster if he knew how to love and take responsibility for the ones we bring to this world.

 

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley essay

 

Introduction: Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein” is a book with a deep message that touches to the very heart. This message implies that the reader will not see the story only from the perspective of the narrator but also reveal numerous hidden opinions and form a personal interpretation of the novel. One of its primary statements is that no one is born a monster and a “monster” is created throughout socialization, and the process of socialization starts from the contact with the “creator”. It is Victor Frankenstein that could not take the responsibility for his creature and was not able to take care of his “child”. Pride and vanity were the qualities that directed Victor Frankenstein to his discovery of life: “...So much has been done, exclaimed the soul of Frankenstein-more, far more, will I achieve: treading in the steps already marked, I will pioneer a new way, explore unknown powers, and unfold to the world the deepest mysteries of creation”[p.47]. He could not cope with this discovery and simply ignored it. The tragedy of Victor Frankenstein and the tragedy of his creature is the same – it is the tragedy of loneliness and confronting the world, trying to find a place in it and deserve someone’s love. The creature would have never become a monster if it got the love it strived for. Victor Frankenstein would have never converted his creature into a monster if he knew how to love and take responsibility for the ones we bring to this world.

According to Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein” the creature becomes a real monster through committing a murder. It becomes a murderer whose main goal is to revenge. The creature avenges for having been abandoned by his creator and left all alone in the hostile world that cannot let him simply exist and have somebody to love. Obviously, the creature did not begin its life as a monster but became one after Victor Frankenstein rejected it and refused to realize that he has to take care of this creature from now and forever and be responsible. The creature was born a defenseless being into the world. It was simply born and tried to see the person who made him come, the one who needed him and loved him. But when it saw the world did not see anybody who at least gave him an arm to stand up. Victor Frankenstein wanted to give life to a creature, but when he managed to do it “the beauty of the dream vanished, and breathless horror and disgust filled [his] heart…”[p.57]. He was scared of what he had created and ran away from his creature, leaving it all alone and hurt. Victor Frankenstein made the first step into making the Creature a real monster by running away from it, not even welcoming it into this world. Victor ran away for the Creature was ugly, but the Creature did not have any cruel intentions for being as a newborn it was evil-free. The Creature did not do anything bad. All it did was it came into the world, or it would be more honest to elaborate that it did not come on its own will but was brought to life. He came looking for love and the first thing he met was rejection. How does it feel for any living being to be rejected?

The Creature ran away and tried to turn to other people. It did not want anything bad but simply attention and support. Nevertheless, his appearance made people feel disgust and everybody tried to hurt him. The Creature could not understand why it was treated so cruelly and suffered so much. It was completely isolated and nobody cared for this living being who wanted to be loved so desperately! Such suffering and constant refection turned the Creature into a real monster and the revengeful murderer of little William. The creature was not born a monster but the scorn of men made him one. Everyone he turned to hated him, hated for nothing. And when he turned to Frankenstein begging for a mate he heard the words that killed the last “gains of hope” in the depth of his heart: “…Devil ... do you dare approach me? ... Be gone, vile insect! or rather, stay that I may trample you to dust! ... Abhorred monster! Fiend that thou art! the tortures of hell are too mild a vengeance for thy crimes. Wretched devil! you reproach me with your creation; come on then, that I may extinguish the spark which I so negligently bestowed"[p.68]. The Creature had nobody to live for and it was the point when revenge started being the essence of his life. He did not need people anymore he just became what they always believed him to be – a monster. It is possible neither to say that the Creature was a monster from the very beginning nor accuse the Creature of anything for all it did it appeared into this world. The Creature came with a pure heart and did not meet any love or at least sympathy from people, including his very creator. The Creature was so unhappy and became a “monster” only because everyone treated the Creature as if they were natural monsters that have no feelings at all.

Conclusion: The Creature is not a real monster. It is just a victim. Just like Victor is the victim of the mistakes his parents did, and the Creature is a victim of Victor’s ill perception of reality. It’s like an iceberg – we see only the top, yet the biggest part of it stays under the water. The top is Victor’s creating a monster that killed all his dearly loved people and what we see under the water - is real reason of things: the indifference of people and the nature to judge everything basing on the appearance without even trying to look inside. Nevertheless there is something that can be called a genuine monster without any doubt - it is the scorn and the blindness of people. Blindness to mistakes, to the pain of other people, even to love… What the reader learns from this book is that things are not always the way they appear to be. And what seems terrifying may turn out to be just the pain of someone’s heart, just like the pain of the creature that was thought to be a monster and not being one from the begging became one at the end.

 

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