The Main Theme Of Frankenstein Essay Research

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The Main Theme Of Frankenstein Essay, Research Paper Mary Shelley’s work is symbolic. Symbols are meant to be explored with ever increasing depth rather than simply defined. What you envision as the central theme of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein will likely be governed by the interpretive lens you view the novel with rather than some unquestionable meaning revealed by the text itself. Instead of advocating any one theme, I would suggest that you explore your critical and imaginative abilities so that you can see the text in a multitude of ways. In this manner you will be attempting to see the most it can mean rather than trying to condense the novel into a single summary. Below I suggest different avenues into the text that locate the central thrust of it in different ways.

Frankenstein can be seen as a prophetic statement against the pride that accompanies technological or scientific knowledge. Victor Frankenstein becomes intoxicated with the possibilities of modern science. He is so inflated and consumed with the knowledge of how to animate a human creature that he doesn’t consider the morality or even the aesthetics. He is so absorbed in the minutia of his experiments that he creates each section of the Creature with care without considering the total effect. How can I describe my emotions at this catastrophe, or how delineate the wretch whom with such infinite pains and care I had endeavored to form? His limbs were in proportion, and I had selected his features as beautiful. Beautiful!- Great God! His yellow skin scarcely covered the work of

muscles and arteries beneath; his hair was of a lustrous black, and flowing; his teeth of a pearly whiteness; but these luxuriances only formed a more horrid contrast with his watery eyes, that seemed almost of the same colour as the dun white sockets in which they were set, Carroll 2 his shriveled complexion and straight black lips. I had worked hard for nearly two years, for the sole purpose of infusing life into an inanimate body. For this I had deprived myself of rest and health. I had desired it with an ardor that far exceeded moderation; but now that I had finished, the beauty of the dream vanished, and breathless horror and disgust filled my heart. Deeply disappointed in the results of his experiment, Victor’s elation turned to sheer terror when he realized what he had

unleashed. The scientist becomes the hunted and the haunted as a result of overstepping his boundaries. There are many advantages to viewing Frankenstein as a cautionary tale directed at science but this interpretation has limitations as well. It doesn’t do Shelley’s novel justice to see Frankenstein as anti-scientific or as placing the blame on Victor’s scientific knowledge. The problem is not with science but rather with the character of those who wield it. One of the most applicable interpretations of Frankenstein approaches the novel from a relational dynamics point of view. While there are similarities to the moral educative point of view this relational approach touches on the deeper psychological roots of monster making. The dynamics of doom are set up by the

abhorrence of the parent for the child. Victor Frankenstein’s idealism prepared him for an idyllic relationship. Instead of the expected adulation by his offspring, he was immediately confronted with the creature’s loathsomeness and his own responsibility. I had desired it with an ardor that far exceeded moderation; but now that I had finished, the beauty of the dream vanished, and breathless horror and disgust filled my heart. Unable to endure the aspect of the being I had created, I rushed out of the room, continued a long time traversing my bedchamber, unable to compose my mind to sleep. Carroll 3 Victor’s disillusionment with parenthood, more particularly mothering, led to post-partum depression and neglect. Victor himself had no one at his side encouraging him or