The Enormous Influence of the Enlightenment on the World and Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

The Enormous Influence of the Enlightenment on the World and Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

Length: 1092 words (3.1 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview


In the 17th and 18th centuries, with the development of capitalism, the power of the
bourgeois became stronger. Feudal system hindered the development of capitalism.
Nature science was the weapon that could break the feudalism. The Enlightenment
was the product of this period. The origin of the Enlightenment was in England, and
throughout in the Europe. France was the core country of the Enlightenment. The
influence of the Enlightenment on the world was enormous. It provided plenty of
mental preparation for the French Revolution; had inspired role in American

Voltaire’s Letter on England

In the course of the Enlightenment, a large number of thinkers have emerged:
Montesquieu, Rousseau, Voltaire, Kant, Locke, etc. Among those people, Voltaire had
the most representative; he was also being the leader of the Enlightenment in
France. Someone said: the 18th century was the Voltaire’s century. This shows the
huge contribution he made in the European history. Letters on England was written
when he exiled in the England, through the understanding of the local government,
the observation of the religions, and the research on the social customs he wrote this book. This book not only was his first philosophical and political writing, but also was his representative thought. From this book, his writing from three major
aspects to describe Britain at that time.


As Locke and Newton’s believers, Voltaire inheritance Locke’s empiricism. Voltaire recognized the objectivity of the material world. From the Letter 13 and Letter 14,
he described Locke, Descartes, and Newton. Voltaire critiqued Descartes “Descartes
born to uncover the errors of antiquity, but to substitute his own” . Which show him...

... middle of paper ...

...ernment, which disclosure the dark society in the late 18th century. At that time, people’s right couldn’t be guarantee. From Voltaire’s point of view, a just society should be fair and equitable, but he also explained all the human being could divided into nobles and civilians. He didn’t oppose nobles or overthrow the absolute monarchy, he just advised to create monarchy.
For god, Voltaire had complex ideas, he believed god not because the metaphysical system, he thought god could maintain moral life. However for Mary Shelley, the Frankenstein was a symbol of god, “If I could banish disease from the human frame and render man invulnerable to any but a violent death” Frankenstein was trying to challenge the god.

In conclusion, no matter Voltaire or Mary Shelley. They both used their minds inspired and motivated people at that time, guide people to get successes.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Romanticism in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein Essay

- Mary Shelley, with her brilliant tale of mankind's obsession with two opposing forces: creation and science, continues to draw readers with Frankenstein's many meanings and effect on society. Frankenstein has had a major influence across literature and pop culture and was one of the major contributors to a completely new genre of horror. Frankenstein is most famous for being arguably considered the first fully-realized science fiction novel. In Frankenstein, some of the main concepts behind the literary movement of Romanticism can be found....   [tags: Frankenstein]

Strong Essays
2058 words (5.9 pages)

Romantic and Enlightenment Ideas in Frankenstein Essay

- The Enlightenment age encouraged everyone to use reason and science in order to rid the world of barbarism and superstition. In fact, Kant argued that the "public use of one's reason must always be free, and it alone can bring about enlightenment among men" (Kant 3). Enlightenment thinking not only influenced philosophy and the sciences, but also literature (especially in Pope's Essay on Man). In reaction to Enlightenment's strict empiricism, Romanticism was born. In Frankenstein, Shelley argues (1) that Victor Frankenstein's role as an Enlightenment hero, not only pulled him out of nature, but made him a slave to his creation; (2) that Frankenstein's role as a revolting romantic failed, be...   [tags: Frankenstein essays]

Strong Essays
1160 words (3.3 pages)

Free Essays: Frankenstein and the Enlightenment

- Many people say that Mary Shelley's Frankenstein postdates the Enlightenment; that it is a looking-back on the cultural phenomenon after its completion, and a first uncertain reaction to the movement. I must disagree. There is no "after the Enlightenment." A civilization does not simply stop learning. Where is the point at which someone stands up and says, "Okay, that's enough Enlightening for now, I think we're good for another few centuries". For better or for worse, the Enlightenment is still going on today....   [tags: Frankenstein essays]

Free Essays
2041 words (5.8 pages)

The Myth of Prometheus in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein Essay

- The Myth of  Prometheus in Frankenstein   Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein as a modern day version of the legend of Prometheus. Prometheus created men out of clay and taught them the "arts of civilisation" (Webster's World Encyclopedia CD-ROM 1999). Zeus, the chief god of the Titans, wanted to destroy Prometheus' creation but Prometheus stole fire from heaven to help mankind. Zeus punished Prometheus by chaining him to a rock where an eagle would feed on his liver during the day and each night the liver would grow back....   [tags: Frankenstein essays]

Strong Essays
1188 words (3.4 pages)

Accepting the Extraordinary in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein Essay

- My life, although not without surprises and unusual events, is dictated by predictable and ordinary elements. However, through fiction I am transported into a world of boundless imagination and extraordinary themes. One such example is evident in my response to Mary Shelley’s gothic novel Frankenstein. Through fiction, Shelley invites the reader to accept the extraordinary. Firstly, we are led to believe that Victor Frankenstein is able to create life by shocking it with electricity, and to this I responded with an imaginative curiosity....   [tags: Mary Shelley]

Strong Essays
1603 words (4.6 pages)

Science, Technology, and Morality as Perceived in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

-    In Frankenstein, Mary Shelley challenges the motives and ethical uncertainties of the scientific developments of her time. This critique has become increasingly relevant as modern scientists endeavor into previously unimagined realms of the natural world through the use of cloning and genetic engineering. Through careful analysis, we can see how the novel illustrates both the potential dangers of these exploits and the irony of the conflicts between science and creationism.      Prior to the birth of the story, Mary Shelley had begun to learn of advancements and speculation in the scientific world of the early nineteenth century; in Frankenstein's introduction, editor M....   [tags: Frankenstein essays]

Strong Essays
1968 words (5.6 pages)

Enlightenment Philosophy in Frankenstein Essay

- Egotism is characterized by an inflated appraisal of one’s intellect, ability, importance, and appearance. It is practiced by placing oneself at the center of his or her world. In Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus, Shelley seeks to deliver her idea of the egotistic archetype as it relates to the ideals of The Enlightenment Period, a time period she sees as self-centered. Shelley sees the arrogance in the fact that Enlightenment philosophers test the limits of human understanding and attempt to simplify the ambiguities of nature....   [tags: Literary Analysis ]

Strong Essays
1876 words (5.4 pages)

Frankenstein, Mary Shelley Essay

- Mary Shelley The late 18th century was a time of enlightenment for Europe. All categories of learning improved in this enlightenment period. The most impressive advances were in the sciences. Newton had developed his laws of physics, and scientific method had been tuned to a point. These improvements gave people a new outlook on life and the world. Mary Shelley tries to tackle the intimidating nature of the enlightenment period in the book, Frankenstein. The main character is a dramatized version of a scientist of the age....   [tags: Enlightenment period]

Free Essays
380 words (1.1 pages)

A Sense of Gothic Expressed in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein Essay

- A Sense of Gothic Expressed in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein The term ‘Gothic’ has many forms. Its origins go back to the medieval period and can be seen in architecture such as Westminster Abbey in London and the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris. It can also be applied to art in the works of Hieronymus Bosch who’s grotesque and haunting imagery depicted ugly distorted humans who are morally degenerate and depraved, and to William Blake who visualised Dante’s Divine Comedy. In literature, the Gothic novel is credited as starting with Horace Walpole’s Castle of Otranto, (1764) which characterised most of what would become the essential ingredients in the Gothic genre....   [tags: Frankenstein Gothic Literature Essays]

Strong Essays
942 words (2.7 pages)

The Author as Creator in Frankenstein Essay

- The Author as Creator in Frankenstein         Mary Shelley's Frankenstein can be read as an allegory for the creative act of authorship. Victor Frankenstein, the 'modern Prometheus' seeks to attain the knowledge of the Gods, to enter the sphere of the creator rather than the created. Like the Author, too, he apes the ultimate creative act; he transgresses in trying to move into the feminine arena of childbirth.   Myths of divine creation are themselves part of the historical process that seeks to de-throne the feminine; this is the history of Art, itself at first denied to women as an outlet of self-expression....   [tags: Frankenstein essays]

Strong Essays
2916 words (8.3 pages)