Good evening members of the Cairns Literary Association. Thank you for inviting me to speak as a guest at this dinner. In this presentation, I will share my perspective on the novel Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. Throughout this presentation, I will outline some of the dominant readings and discuss the messages Mary Shelley intended to include in her novel. I will also provide evidence to show that the novel includes themes and messages that were not intended to be included.
Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein has undoubtedly withstood the test of time. Frankenstein’s direct association with fundamental Gothic literature is extremely renowned. However, the novel’s originality is derived from the foundational thematic values found within the relationship (or lack there of) between Victor Frankenstein and the monster he had created, in combination with a fascinatingly captivating plot. Understandably, Frankenstein can often be associated with a multitude of concepts; however, in this particular instance, the circumstances in the book seemed remarkably coherent with Shelley’s Romantic beliefs in preserving the natural world, and one’s natural existence. These values present themselves as metaphorical symbols that
The ultimate consequences of Promethean ambition are characterized through Victor and Walton, who parallels Victor, yet is able to turn from the ‘intoxicating draught’ of superiority and unbridled ambition. This juxtaposition of character reinforces the significance of moral responsibility, as Shelley ultimately mocks the hateful bond between Frankenstein and his child, the Monster. The harsh consequences of disrupting nature and forfeiting moral conscience are conveyed, connoting the inevitable demise due to loss of self and identity.
Playing God is a role that no man should ever take upon themselves. Many conflicts may arise and we may never know where to draw the line between the human world and scientific discoveries. In Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, the main character decides to act as God and creates a being that serves as tragic figure and functions as an instrument of unintentional suffering to others. The novel is about a man's quest for acceptance and shows the potential destruction people may cause while trying to find their place in the world.
A common tactic used by many anti-slavery writers in the Romantic Era is “in speaking for and/or giving voice to an estranged or silenced other”, by giving the victim of the power struggle the rhetorical devices needed to gain power (Kitson, 519). Shelley gives the creature not just a voice, but an entire Volume of the book. However, she does this in an effort to reinforce the “moral superiority [which] means that [Frankenstein] will rarely question the validity of his own society’s formation and that he will not be inclined to expend any energy in understanding the worthless alterity of the colonized” (JanMohamed, 65). In other words, the creature’s words only reinforce the struggle of power between the creature and Frankenstein. Instead of giving a voice with which the creature can gain power, Shelley uses this voice to break the monster further by reinforcing the ideas of Frankenstein. Directly, Shelley allows Frankenstein to initially sympathize with the creature, whose “words had a strange effect upon me…[but] when I saw the filthy mass…my heart sickened and my feelings were altered to those of horror and hatred… I could not sympathize with him,” (Shelly, 103); but eventually, when the reality of the creature as a monster (and not a human) is recognized, Shelley leaves no room for sympathy. Not only does Frankenstein’s perception go against prominent anti-slavery writer Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s message that “no man is wicked without temptation, no man is wretched
The lessons the monster learns from the De Lacey family play an important role in the monsters coming of age in Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein. The De Lacey family is a poor family that the creature has been watching from the outside for some time now. Eventually, he wants to make an appearance to the family and show himself to get help. The perfect time is to knock at the door when nobody is home, except for the old man. All the monster wants is somebody who will accept him and care for him. As shown in Frankenstein, there is a strong symbolism in which the old man is blind and can’t see the monster. Yet, he accepts him for who he is, while the rest of the De Lacey family harm him and beat him. Symbolism is also shown with the De Lacey family and their cottage. It has a strong representation with the Garden of Eden as the cottage acts as the garden. The novel Frankenstein has many different symbolic elements to it while being connected to the De Lacey’s, including the symbolism of the blind man, the way the monster reacts as the humans react to his looks, and the comparison to the Garden of Eden.
Across literature, authors capture the struggle of people finding their true purpose. In Mary W. Shelley’s gothic novel, Frankenstein, Victor Frankenstein and his creation, the Creature, both come from different experiences but ultimately share the same desire in seeking revenge. This desire from the Creature and Victor stems from the failures that they find from their purpose and despite the differences they both face, the two characters parallel one another in this way.
The main theme within Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein pits Frankenstein against his creature, in an almost seemingly God vs. disciple situation. Shelley’s masterful work reflects the scientific changes during the Enlightenment, a time of tension between God and science Although fictional, the purpose of Shelley’s novel is demonstrated through every page, a continuous build-up of conflict between Frankenstein and his monster as to who truly had the power at hand. In order to do this, Shelley employs a prophetic tone, which she constructs throughout the whole novel, but is most apparent during a conversation between Frankenstein and his teacher, M. Waldman, occurring even before the Victor creates the monster.
A romantic life full of pain and abandonment could only be given the monstrous form of "Frankenstein." Mary Shelley 's life gave birth to an imaginary victim full of misery and loneliness and placed him as the protagonist of one of her most famous and greatest works of art. As most people would assume, he is not just a fictional character, but in fact a creature who desperately demonstrates Shelley 's tragedies and losses during the age of the Romantic Era. Since Mary Shelley 's birth there have been numerous losses in her life. One extremely dominating event in Shelley 's life was the death of her mother. Soon after, her father remarried and Shelley entered a battle as the victim of a fight for love. In her
Books are essential when considering the world and its natural state. Without the books, the monster would not be able to verbalize his wants and desires when he finally meets his maker. They give him knowledge to the life he has been given. Each individual book provides the monster with a new idea or feeling he can use to better his life into the one all wish to possess. With the help of the monster, the reader is also able to learn valuable lessons. This, of course, would not be possible without the existence of the works found inside the tote. Through the three publications, the monster can be used to symbolize several different topics throughout the novel. The literature found within assists in creating such a versatile symbol. The classic
Have you ever read a book and realized that it symbolizes something? Some notice and some do not, but Mary Shelley’s book Frankenstein is a good example of symbolism. In this novel it uses religious aspects, teaching, human hatred, the role of women, self-maintenance, knowledge, and the feeling of being alone which falls around the same region as human hatred.
Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is a widely known novel that at the time it was published was an extremely controversial novel that was both horrifying and intriguing to its readers. The novel is full of various themes which will be discussed in this assignment and how they are presented through the use of the language and imagery that are presented in a passage from Chapter V. In this passage Victor Frankenstein succeeds in bringing to life the creature which he has obsessively for two years strived to animate and give life. A prominent theme in this passage and throughout the novel is the image of Frankenstein as a godly image and the creature as the devil.
Frankenstein is a novel incorporating ideas that will forever sustain relevance. These ideas presented by Shelley are simple, yet very powerful life lessons that show the consequences of mankind going too far. The details in the pages of this book make for an incredibly vivid experience that appeals to the reader’s senses and emotions, fully justifying its place as one of the hallmarks of classical literature.
Author Mary Shelly accepted a challenge from her husband and a friend to write a horror story. The result was her novel, Frankenstein. Frankenstein is the story of a monster that was created from body parts of the dead, and also pieces of dead animals by protagonist Victor Frankenstein. This Gothic science fiction is set in the eighteenth century and takes place in Russia, Geneva; the Swiss Alps; Ingolstadt; England and Scotland. The story is written in first person point of view. Other major characters in the novel are Robert Walton, the ship’s captain, Henry Clerval, Victor’s best friend, Elizabeth Lavenza, Victor’s adopted cousin and wife, Justine Moritz, servant and family friend, as well as Mr. DeLacey, Felix, Agatha and Safie, all members of a cottage family that were observed by the monster.