Frankenstein And Science : What Is The Purpose Of Science?

1676 WordsNov 22, 20167 Pages
Frankenstein and Science: What is the Purpose of Science? What does it mean to conquer nature? In the Romantic era of Mary Shelley, scientists were the ultimate conquerors of the natural world. The Enlightenment allowed for impressive advancements in the realm of science that negated the need for mystery in nature. This fact downplayed the necessity of faith and reliance on God and emphasized the importance of logical, empirical evidence for the belief of anything and everything. Science becomes the ultimate vision of reality that Romantic writers oftentimes critique. Mary Shelley uses Frankenstein to expose science, despite its many positive contributions, as an avenue for irresponsible scientists to pursue scientific advancement no matter the cost to humanity. In Frankenstein, Shelley critiques science as an inaccurate method of conquering nature. Shelley says via the professor with whom Frankenstein initially works that, “They [scientists] have acquired new and almost unlimited powers; they can command the thunders of heaven, mimic the earthquake, and even mock the invisible world with its own shadows” (Shelley, 49). This statement brings to light the romantic concern that science is an attempt to replace God by human power (Harrison & Gannon, 2015). Scientists wanted to pursue a sort of God-like persona to gain power and certainty in a world that was constantly changing. The motivation for the pursuit of creating the being with which Victor pours so much of himself
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