Filter Your Search Results:

Social Expectations in Frankenstein Essay


Social society is unavoidable because it will always be there as a pleasure or a burden. Society puts labels on everything as good or bad, rich or poor, normal or unusual. Although some of these assumptions are accurate, most of them are misconceptions. For instance, in the novel Frankenstein, everyone rejects the monster Victor creates. The monsters behavior is directly related to his experiences with society and its treatment of him. Due to this rejection, the reader can see the true temperament of both the monster and Victor. In her novel Frankenstein, Mary Shelley explores the depravity of man through the relationship and actions of Victor and the monster

From the beginning, Victor only aspires to make a creature due to his own selfish desires instead considering his creation and recognizing the possible consequences. For example, when Victor is young and in school, he says, the world was to me a secret which I desired to divine. Curiosity, earnest research to learn the hidden laws of nature. . . still my inquiries were directed to the metaphysical, or in it highest sense, the physical secrets of the world" (22-23). Frankenstein desire[s] to divine the world which causes him to be entangled in a loathsome pursuit that causes him to destroy his own health and shun his own friends and family. Due to his irresponsibility, it causes the dreadful consequences that he fails to take into consideration, and he eventually falls under the control of his own creation which shows his careless manner. Furthermore, when formulating his idea of creating a human, he, doubted at first whether [he] should attempt the creation of a being like [himself] , or one of simpler organization; but [his] imagination was too much exalted by [his] first success to permit [him] to doubt of [his] ability to give life to an animal as complex and wonderful as man (38). This humanity desire, to make oneself equal to God is demonstrated when he becomes cocky from his previous endeavors. By embarking upon constructing a higher kind of creature Victor is, trying to posses the qualities of God by desiring power over another. In addition, after finalizing the decision to create a human, he dreams, a new species would bless me as its creator and source; many happy and excellent natures would owe their being to me (39). At this point, Victor is willing to take the responsibility for his future creation but that is only when he thinks he is brilliant and able to produce a human showing his lack of good judgment. He only desires the amazing satisfaction of being the creator and being able to claim another being as is own revealing once again, his selfish desires. Overall, before even bringing the monster to life, Victor only thinks of himself and never even considered what effects it would have if his creation did not turn out as he had hoped.

Once Victor realizes what he has created, he completely disowns his creature, adding tension to relationship between Victor and the monster. For instance, after first seeing the creature, he thinks, Its gigantic stature, and the deformity of its aspect, more hideous than belongs to humanity, instantly informed me that it was the wretch, the filthy demon to whom I had given life" (60). Because Victor assumed it was supposed to be a beautiful experiment instead of the hideous monstrosity he created, the regret that filled him caused catastrophic change within him, as a person. Victor made it a monster through his rejection, not through the process of creation, because if he would have nurtured his creation, it could have turned out differently because it felt that acceptance. Also, after the terrible actions of the monster, Victor begins to feel guilty saying, "I beheld those I loved spend vain sorrow upon the graves of William and Justine, the first hapless victims to my unhallowed arts" (73). The monsters actions are Victors responsibility and it in a way mirrors the deterioration of Victors own humanity which is caused by his lack to care. The more dreadful actions the monster does the more Victor falls apart and is unable to bear it. Furthermore, from the viewpoint of the monster, his thoughts bring forth this statement: "'all men hate the wretched; how then, must I be hated, who am miserable beyond all living things! Yet you, my creator, detest and spurn me, the creature, to whom thou art bound by ties only dissoluble by the annihilation of one of us'" (83). Without the guidance of its creator, the monster soon becomes seeded with the hatred, fear and anger towards human world, and develops into a horrific monster. The outbreak of the monsters feelings of abandonment as he questions the wrongs of his creator gives the reader a glimpse into the suffering that has motivated his crimes. Due to the his actions, many others have to suffer from the consequences that Victor had failed to consider.

As a result of the neglect Frankenstein showed towards his creation, the monster felt strong hatred towards everyone which therefore caused Victor to finally recognize his actions.

For example, the monster announces, From that moment I declared everlasting war against the species, and more than all, against him who had formed me and sent me forth to this insupportable misery'" (121). Frankenstein has the responsibility to oversee his creation, to educate it and care for it but because he does not do this, he allows the creature go out of control. He rejects his responsibility for his creation, and defeats his own self in his desire to become God. Furthermore, as Victor begins to regret his actions, he exclaims, "Great God! If for one instant I had thought what might be the hellish intention of my fiendish adversary, I would rather have banished myself forever from my native country and wandered a friendless outcast over the earth than have consented to this miserable marriage. But, as if possessed of magic powers, the monster had blinded me to his real intentions; and when I thought that I had prepared only my own death, I hastened that of a far dearer victim" (174-175). The complete and utter destruction of what Victor holds dear seems to flow as a direct consequence of his own actions. Victor abandons his creation, and it is this abandonment that results in the creature's wrath. Additionally, Victor feeling very guilty about his experiment proclaims, "'In a fit of enthusiastic madness I created a rational creature and was bound towards him to assure, as far as was in my power, his happiness and well-being . . . I refused, and I did right in refusing, to create a companion for the first creature. He showed unparalleled malignity and selfishness in evil; he destroyed my friends . . . Miserable himself that he may render no other wretched, he ought to die. The task of his destruction was mine, but I have failed'"(199-200). Victor finally recognized how in the beginning he should have never made that selfish decision and therefore caused so many problems, which shows development within Victors outlook on life. Because the creature destroyed what Victor valued most, Victor is not going to make him a companion, which reflects Victors very miserable human nature. In conclusion, after Victor realized he was at fault for his creation turning out so terribly wrong and from the start, he never should have done such selfish ambitions.

Victor and the monster demonstrate the wickedness of man through their actions and harsh relationship. Because of Victors selfish desires, he places his own well-being before that of his creation and does not care for it. In addition, the tense relationship between the two characters causes their real personalities to be shown, which reveals the extreme depravity of man. The monster harbored strong feelings towards Victor because of the abandonment he felt that caused devastation. Some may go to extreme lengths to achieve an ideal situation in order to do what is best for them.

You'll need to sign up to view the entire essay.

Sign Up Now, It's FREE
Filter Your Search Results: