The True Evil

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The True Evil – Frankenstein Essay, Research Paper The True Evil The ability of committing evil is within every human being on earth. It is how we overcome these urges to use this evil that defines who we are. In Mary Shelley s gothic novel, Frankenstein, evil is portrayed in many ways through Victor Frankenstein s actions. Victor s irresponsible actions and selfish nature are the true evil in the novel. He shows his irresponsibility and selfishness towards the monster, his family and the knowledge he gains. Throughout the novel Frankenstein, the monster is depicted as being wretched and evil, whereas Victor is looked upon as being brilliant and creative. When looked upon more carefully, it is revealed that it is really Victor s actions that are evil. Victor creates a

monster knowing that it will be different from other people. When the monster comes to life, Victor does not give it a chance to prove himself worthy and this is his first sign of irresponsibility: “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. Unable to endure the aspect of the being I had created, I rushed out of the room and continued a long time traversing my bed chamber unable to compose my mind to sleep.” (p. 42) It is seen that Victor ran away from the first sight of his creation. He did not own up to the responsibility of being the monster s creator. If Victor had in fact acknowledged that

he was the creator of the monster, then maybe the destruction that lay ahead could have been prevented. Victor also shows his irresponsibility towards the monster when he pretends that he does not exist. He refuses to come to terms with the fact that he is the creator of the monster and that he has certain duties towards him. Victor does everything in his power so he can forget the monster s existence. This shows great immaturity on his part: “When I was otherwise quite restored to health, the sight of a chemical instrument would renew all the agony of my nervous symptoms. Henry saw this and removed all my apparatus from my view. He had also changed my apartment for he perceived that I had acquired a dislike for the room which had previously been my laboratory.” (p.52) Victor

believes that by changing his surroundings and re-arranging his belongings he can forget about the monster s existence. It is important for him to realize that by being the creator of the monster he is held accountable for what actions the monster might make in the future. The relationship between Victor and the monster is such of a dog and it s owner. If the dog were to bite someone then it is the owner who must take responsibility for his actions. By trying to forget his problem, Victor comes across as being extremely cowardly. Victor does not give the monster a chance to redeem himself and does not want to listen to what he has to say. The monster asks Victor to make him a companion with whom he can relate and live with. Victor agrees, but at the last minute breaks his

promise. This shows his irresponsibility because he knows the consequences that will follow. Victor should have taken any opportunity that he had, to try to fix the problem that he created. By breaking his promise at the last minute he shows that he makes extremely rash decisions and does not think of the consequences: “The monster saw my determination in my face and gnashed his teeth in the impotence of anger. Shall each man cried he, find a wife for his bosom and each beast have his mate, and I be alone? I had feelings of affection and they were requited by detestation and scorn. Man! You many hate, but beware! Your hours will pass in dread and misery and son the bolt will fall which must ravish you from your happiness forever ” (p. 152) The monster promised Victor that he