Critic Northrop Frye once commented that "Tragic heroes are so much the highest points in their human landscapes" (Frye 1). Few characters illustrate this characteristic of a tragic hero better than that of Victors Frankenstein, the protagonist of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. His story is one of a brilliant man whose revolutionary ideas brought suffering to himself, his family and friends, and his creation. Victor is an instrument as well as a victim to this suffering throughout his story.
Victor thought “for this I had deprived myself of rest and health. I had desired it with an ardour that far exceeded moderation; but now that I had finished, the beauty of the dream vanished, and breathless horror and disgust filled my heart”(page). This quote demonstrates that once Victor had concluded his work of creating the monster, he realized that it may have been a huge mistake. He was not satisfied with his creation instead he was filled with terror. In result of his realization, he left the monster to fend for himself and suffer. Victor shows an evil side of himself by abandoning the monster and leaving him to be universally shunned by society. By Victor doing this one evil act, it causes the monster himself to go off and initiate evil acts of his own.
His friend from home comes to surprise Victor but he ends up consoling him for months — he does not want to confront the horrors he has single handedly created. He is such a disaster that he cannot write his family, only putting them under more stress. Finally, after months go by Victor begins to regain his mind and consciousness. He receives a letter from his father stating that his child brother was murdered. This, of all things, is what finally pushes Victor to return home to his family. Once Victor has returned to his family he realizes what exactly he had done. Victor’s creation had made its way to his family’s home and had taken the life of his brother. Not only is has the life of this young child been stripped away but Justine, a family friend, has been accused of killing the poor boy. Justine had never done anything but love and care for the child as if he were her own. He claims Justine’s innocence but he does not come clean— he cannot. If Victor were to mention that of a monster he would be institutionalized and Justine would still be found guilty. Justine is put to death, the second being stripped of life at the his monster. Victor feels “a weight of despair pressed on [his] heart,” (Shelley 111). These murders are the fault of Frankenstein and the weight he feels is overwhelming guilt. Without the construction of a new life, of a monster, these lives would not be lost… still he manages to fond great comfort in
In the letters that Robert Walton sent to his sisters, there is legit evidence that he was encountering difficult circumstances when he met Victor Frankenstein. When Walton's vessel was sailing to the Northern Pole they encountered heavy fog and lots of ice. Walton's exact words were, "...we were nearly surrounded by ice" (8). and he also exclaimed, "...we were compassed round by a very thick fog" (8). Also, while they were trapped in the ice surrounding them, they saw a gigantic figure going on along the ice which befuddled the crew because as Walton had said in his letters, "We were, as believed, many hundreds of miles away from any
Before Victor goes off to college, his mother dies which leaves him distraught. Subsequently he became infatuated with death and the idea of bringing life back. He said, "To examine the causes of life, we must first have recourse to death" ( Shelley Chtr 4). Slowly, he became a monster engulfed in his own subconscious with the help of his studies in science.
He was working so hard that his “cheeks had grown pale with study” (Shelley 29). Also the book states, “Natural philosophy, and particular chemistry… became my sole occupation” (Shelley 29). All the time Victor was spending on this monster was physically causing him to get sick. As the monster started coming alive, Victor realized it was not how he thought it would turn out. The monster was described as “limbs were proportionate… yellow skin scarcely covered the work of muscles and arteries beneath… teeth of pearly whiteness…” (Shelley 35). When the monster came alive, Victor could be seen as a biblical allusion to the readers, as he could be playing God. He created a life, just a God does. When he begins to have nightmares about the monster, he begins to realize it was a bad idea for him to create this creature. Fast forward two chapters, and the readers also begin to agree with Victor’s theory that the monster was a bad idea. Victor learns of his youngest brother William’s death and assumes his creation has done it. When he later returns home he does not say a word because he does not want to be labeled ‘crazy’ or ‘insane’. The book states, “Two years have passed since… he received life… was this his first crime?” (Shelley 50). Victors knowledge prior to making the monster did not include his creation ever becoming a murderer. Victor had no intention of creating such an evil being, yet now he learned that not everything is as good as it seems. Victor contemplates suicide because he know it will not be easy to stop his creation but instead he voyages out to destroy it. While running into the monster in the woods, he now knows what the monster is capable of, and “trembles with rage and fear” (Shelley 68). The monster insists Victor sit with him in the cave and hear his struggles and how much knowledge he has
Mary Shelley was the second wife of famous English poet Percey Shelley. She had three children during her lifetime, but only one survived birth. Her most famous work was this novel, Frankenstein; it was not until long after she was dead that she received any real credit for her other
Every story has its hero and villain. Some authors’ works easily clarify the debate between which character is the ultimate protagonist or the antagonist, but sometimes the author tries to toy with readers’ minds. Similarly, Frankenstein’s author, Marry Shelley is one of the authors who is not straightforward about who is the villain in her novel. In Frankenstein, both the Monster and Victor Frankenstein could be considered the villains in the book. Doctor Victor Frankenstein is an alchemist who is obsessed with creating life from the dead. He creates the green creature, also given the name Frankenstein, who is portrayed as the Monster in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Dr. Frankenstein’s complete disregard for mortal beings, obsession with becoming a God, and his self-centeredness throughout the novel are all good evidence to why he – Dr. Victor Frankenstein plays the role of the villain in the story.
It is Victor's story that truly exposes the true theme of the story, with him speaking of his days as a child and his first friendship with the girl his parents adopted. He lives a fine life, full of joy and happiness with friend plentiful. When he goes to college he is without friends, but soon befriends one of the professors and engaged in lengthy conversations with him. This isn't the same friendship as before, lacking the real love and companionship of his family, and he soon begins work on his creation. He so overwhelmed by the idea of creating a perfect person he is blinded from the deformity of the creature. When the creature is finished he examines his work and is mortified by it, running and hiding he escapes the creature that soon wanders away. Soon after Victor becomes sick and deathly, he shuns society and people and is almost dead when his friend Clerval arrives at the college. Clerval nurses Victor back to health, but Victor isn't physically sick, he has just
The Victim and Victimizer In Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, it can be hard to pinpoint who exactly is the victim and the victimizer. In a way, both Victor and the Monster are both victims, however, the Monster is the true victimizer between the two. From my perspective, Victor is the victim of poor planning and his own creation.
Author Mary Shelley was born August 30th, 1797 to philosopher and writer William Godwin and feminist Mary Wollstonecraft. Mary’s mother passed away early in Shelley’s life and wasn’t a prominent figure. Her father remarried another woman named Mary Jane Clairmont. Shelley and her stepmother rarely got along so a female role model was not something Shelley received in her early years. Clairmont refused to send Shelley to be educated at a school but has no hesitation when sending her own daughter. Even without a formal education Shelley would still attempt to seek knowledge through books and would often daydream to escape the everyday struggles of her life at home. She also took up writing as an activity in which to
The monster believed that Victor would accept him, but after he realized that not only did Victor not want to assume his position in the monster’s life, but society also rejected him, it became a transitory thought, and instead became replaced with his bloodthirst towards Victor and his loved ones, which he knew would hurt way worse than just killing him; making him lonely like himself. Both Victor and the monster partook in horrid acts, in which held horrendous actions; the main one being Victor creating the monster in the first place which in result caused the both of them heartbreak, loneliness, and pain. If Victor wouldn’t have created the monster, then his life would not be filled with so much grief and emptiness; Victor is the true monster, although they are both the primal protagonists as much as they are the antagonists because of the display of the emotions they both portray as lamenting humans/monsters, and the power they give to nature in order to destroy one another. Victor used nature to his advantage, although it was wrong; Victor used nature to create and destroy the monster; he used the
Frankenstein is a novel about a mad scientist named Victor Frankenstein creating a monster. The novel depicts Victor as the protagonist and the monster, who will be addressed as Promotes, is depicted as the antagonist. However, their personality and reactions say otherwise. Ruth Cristina Hernández Ching composed an article addressing that the protagonist, or Victor, is the true anti-hero and Prometheus is the hero. Victor and Prometheus fulfill their roles of anti-hero and hero by their relationships and relationships.
When Victor traveled to Ingolstadt to attend the university, he delved deeper into the sciences, specifically chemistry. Resulting from the profound involvement, and concentration Victor devoted to his studies, he began to lose contact with family, friends, and later, his professors. Victor labored arduously over his experiments and “two years passed in this manner, during which I paid no visit to Geneva” (Shelley 55). It became apparent that Victor’s research consumed him; his commitment to science eliminated the opportunity and will for social endeavors, or even communication with his family. If Victor were to encounter a problematic outcome with his studies, which would soon occur, he would have no prospect of receiving help. Although the effect of isolation was weighing down on Victor’s sanity, he was not the sole recipient of this loneliness. Victor’s experiments produced a monster, and Victor neglected his responsibility as a creator and left his creation to its own devices. The monster suffered from the symptoms of a solitary lifestyle, similar to the one led by Victor himself. Ultimately, the scientist realizes the hideousness of the result of his experiment and abruptly abandons the monster. The monster quickly becomes deadly to those surrounding Victor and he realizes he must pursue and destroy his creation. Victor’s health rapidly deteriorated during his pursuit of the
Born on the 30th of August 1797, Mary Shelley’s Mother died 11 days after birth. At 16 years of age Shelley was married to Percy Bysshe Shelley, a romantic poet, who was a follower of Mary’s philosophical father. In the summer of 1816, Mary and Percy visited the poet, Lord Byron, in Lake Geneva, Switzerland, where the idea of Frankenstein was conceived. During her stay at Byron’s villa, Shelley and other house guests was challenged by the poet to write a horror story, after reading one