Dreams And Mental Dreams In Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

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In today’s society, people have many different ways that they interpret their dreams. Some people believe that they give us a view into the future while others believe that they tell us more about ourselves. Historically, they were once believed to be symptoms of mental illness. It was through the work of Sigmund Freud, a psychoanalyst, that the value of dreams was shifted; we were able to learn the significance of the information that they gave us (“Dream in History”, para. 9). In Frankenstein, Mary Shelley uses dreams and nightmares to share information with the reader on Victor. These dreams — specifically Victor’s — give us details relating to his desires which affect his character. As the book progresses, we begin to see a shift in his character which parallels with these dreams. As the book begins, we are introduced to Victor’s personality, which is highly enthusiastic at first. He is immersed into his studies at Ingolstadt, slowly making his place within his university with his interest in the sciences. While studying, he is captivated by the structure of humans and shifts his studies into attempting to create a human being from a dead body (Shelley, 46). Slowly but surely, Victor begins to drift in daydreaming about giving life to a dead body. He says, “Life and death appeared to me ideal bounds, which I should first break through..Pursuing these reflections, I thought, that if I could bestow animation upon lifeless matter, I might..renew life where death had

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