Some Readers Have Seen Frankenstein as an Illustration of the Fear of the Power of Science. to What Extent Do You Agree with This View Based on Your Reading so Far?

1734 Words Nov 29th, 2012 7 Pages
The 19th century was a time of enlightenment where philosophical thought began and man's concern for a greater psychological form developed. However, during this time of enlightenment and exploration, the values of religion and ethical thought challenged science and its moral reasoning. Frankenstein could be seen as an illustration of the fear of the power of science due to these social changes; however there is evidence within the text to support other aspects such as society and religion being the focal point of fear.

On a basic level, it could be argued that Victor’s search for knowledge ultimately leads him to his transgressions and eventual demise; through the medium of science he is able to create a creature that is fearful and
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However, although Victor uses science and his character is obsessed with the search for knowledge, it could be argued that Shelley deliberately leaves out specific scientific references to leave the readers wondering if it is science that creates the monster, or if there is more of a supernatural, Gothic interpretation of how the monster came to live.

Comparatively, some readers could believe that Frankenstein illustrates the fear of the power of religion. Victor’s creation of the monster is ultimately a transgression, defiling morality and arguably giving him ultimate power over life and death. The idea alone is fear inducing, but further still is the way in which Victor goes about this achievement. He is emotionally detached from the bodies he is digging out of graves and mutilating “a churchyard was to me merely the receptacle of bodies deprived of life”, sparing no thought of the unspoken moral codes of humanity. There are also the interesting parallels of John Milton’s Paradise Lost; the Monster finds the book and interprets it literally “I read it… as a true history”; as many Christians interpret the Bible literally; this could represent the fear of the power of religion, as it suggests that people who take religious teachings absolutely literally are dangerous because they have no logical reasoning, as the monster does not. Furthermore, the monster compares Victor to God, as he has created him and thusly

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