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Human Development In Frankenstein

Decent Essays
In the novel Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, the knowledge of the existence of a creator has a paralyzing effect on the creature as he struggles to reconcile his own perception of himself with his maddening desire for divine approval and acceptance. It is impossible to ignore the author’s place in her text as Shelly, an avowed atheist, makes a comparison of human development through the contrary means of both religious and secular/humanistic relationships. In the end, through Frankenstein, Shelley concludes that moral and spiritual development can best be attained through the shedding of dogmatic belief structures, resulting in the elimination of God towards the attainment of self-realization.
Frankenstein’s creature is a testament to this theory as his education and growth follow several divergent paths throughout his short existence, resulting at the last in the freedom of the creature through the death of his creator. Strangely, although the secular theme is continued throughout the text, the religious references and biblical allusions cannot be ignored and are a complex addition to a text that would otherwise be viewed as a secular treatise on the dangerous nature of knowledge. Although it would be simple to pare the text down to such non-religious terms, it cannot be ignored that Frankenstein contains a great deal of biblical symbolism, particularly the theme of the outcast and the story of creation. One difference, though, makes the monster a sympathetic character,
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