Human Companionship in Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein


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Human companionship is one of the most basic needs of humans that can be seen in the Creation story. It is tricky for any human to find the perfect companion especially if one is one of a kind. In Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein two characters exemplify this need. Dr. Victor Frankenstein and The Creature are in search of companionship, and they will go to great lengths to achieve it.
The classic theme of perversion of family is a major component in Frankenstein. Dr. Frankenstein comes from a good family but in his adult life he longs for a new companion this is mainly found in the Creature and Elizabeth. The development for the need for the Creature starts when he falls in love with knowledge and is furthered when he leaves to study. In his child hood he has “Natural philosophy is the genius that has regulated my fate; I desire, therefore, in this narration, to stat those facts which led to my predilection for that science”(Shelley 36). This passion develops into his obsession in his adult life when he gains more accesses to knowledge and equipment. Then it climaxes with start of the creation of the Creature because his accesses to bodies and tools. (quote Intro) “I read with ardour those works, so full of genius and discrimination… it easily conceived that my progress was rapid”(48). His description of the creation makes it seem like he is mothering a child into birth. He distorts the sanity of child birth by creating a human in a lab. This also makes him the mother and father of the Creature. (quote intro) “When I found so astonishing a power placed within my hands, I hesitated a long time concerning the manner in which I should employ it… my first success to permit me doubt of my ability to give live…”(51). This illustrates his power that he has that was never meant to be any humans. With the successful test my can create life, strengthens his bond with this impending birth of Creature, who embodies all of his scientific achievement. (quote Intro) “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 from?” (55). Frankenstein shuns his own creation, whom he should be the loving parents of. The culmination of all of Frankenstein’s education led to creation his own companionship; he can not bear to see his hideous creation.

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Once Frankenstein’s rids himself of the Creature, he looks for a new supposed safer companion.
Removing himself from his studies Victor Frankenstein finds a companion in his cousin, Elizabeth, whom he bounded with in his adolescence. His parents adopted Elizabeth and Victor, “-my more than sister- the beautiful and adored companion of all my occupations and my pleasures” (33). After the failure and lost of the Creature, Victor reverts to his previous companion, Elizabeth. Forsaking his education and experiments he clings on to her love and tries to forget it catastrophe. She is more than willing to foster his need for her love, but she does not know of his dark creation. Upon return to Geneva to morn the murder of his brother William, he reunites with Elizabeth for the first time since he left for his studies. Time since Victor left had been kind to Elizabeth “endowed her with loveliness surpassing the beauty of her childish years” (79). The timeline of William’s death seems to be strange and it is about the same time that Creature left. Because of the lost of the Creature and more importantly William, Victor needs a companion and Elizabeth feeling similarly from the lost of William also. Elizabeth is inclined to embrace Victor. They work together to fill the loss with their love for the other. As time passes Victor is confident that this new love is different for the Creature and it is pure and fulfilling. When Frankenstein has totally pushed the Creature out of his mind, It abruptly returns to Victors dismay. Creature hating Frankenstein for not loving him and forsaking him, he wants to take his revenge upon him and deny him the love and companionship, killing Elizabeth is the harshest way to do it on his wedding night. (quote intro) “I escaped from them to the room where lay the body of Elizabeth, my love, my wife, so lately living, so dearly, so worthy”(196). This is the threshold of Frankenstein’s humanity, he loses all control and become like his creation and seeks revenge and revenge alone.
Even thought Creature is not considered human he was created from human pars and still has the basic needs that all humans need. Creature wants a companion who is like him because human will accept him for what he is. Creature was created and is unique therefore his eve was never made along with him and much like Adam of the creation story he ask his creator for a companion. Creature appeals to his creator, “ My companion must be of the same species and have the same defects. This being you must create” (144). On the lonely journey of the Creature he learns the basics and has a similar need for knowledge as Victor. Seeing that he was the only one of his kind although he felt connected to humans he realizes he is too different to be accepted and wants an companion. He realizes this , “like Adam, I was apparently united by no link to any other being in existence; but his state was far different from mine in every other respect” (129). Overwhelmed for the need for a companion now he peruses his creator like Adam did. Wanting to have the basic psychological need for a companion he wants his female counter part to be made. This need would be fulfilled “You must create a female for me with whom can live in the interchange of those sympathies necessary for being” (145). Creature seems to be devout of all humanity except the scrapes of which he was made, he still has the deep emotional needs of any. Having to fight off the world he seem callus. The need for a female is so overpowering he forsakes everything to just have a companion that will love him. The Creature is seen as a human but he really shares all the properties that humans have but he is ostersized because of his appearance.
The basic need compassion and a companion is shared by all humans. Victor Frankenstein and his child Creature both long for the same thing, a companion. They both conflict with the others pursuit of companionship.( ADD more)



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