Characteristicism And Narcissism In Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

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There is no need to be defensive over matters that lack controversy. Victor’s positive exaggerations of his childhood are additional signs that he is either hiding something or pretending as if his childhood was a flawless stage of his life. “Victor’s reliance upon defensive idealization represents one of the most conspicuous narcissistic features of his narration. He repeatedly makes statements affirming the happiness and tranquility of his earlier life, as when he says: ‘No human being could have passed a happier childhood than myself’” (Berman 64). The reader may then realize that during Frankenstein’s childhood his narcissistic personality began to form.
Though Victor’s narcissism is not that fatal as it seems, because he still shows much
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“Victor’s reliance upon splitting, the division of the world into ‘all good’ and ‘all bad’ objects, betrays the inability to acknowledge ambivalence, or to integrate the good and bad self into a single totality” (Berman 63). This “splitting” results in his rejection of his own creation, regardless of the creature’s innate innocence. When Frankenstein undertakes bringing a corpse back to life he unwisely meddles with powerful forces of nature. “...we are confronted immediately by the displacement of God and woman from the acts of conception and birth…” (Berman 58). This creature who he described as a monster is, in fact, a mirror image of himself. “Victor Frankenstein’s evident longing for another, despite his close friendship with Henry Clerval and his betrothal to Elizabeth, leads to the creation of a being who becomes the Inadequate Other which is, in reality, Victor himself” (Kestner 69). In the eyes of Frankenstein his creation is a failure; lacking human resemblance and harboring beastly qualities. Afterwards, his narcissistic personality appears once again as Majken Hirche describes: “The narcissist’s ultimate nightmare is to have his fallibilities revealed, because this will disrupt his self-image and protection against his painful unconscious. It is of no surprise then, that we see Victor Frankenstein’s narcissism most starkly exposed shortly after he has succeeded in creating a…show more content…
However, they are very similar since they both can be considered murderers and seek blind revenge. Frankenstein even goes as far as to admit to his own guiltiness to the murders of his creation: “...he explicitly acknowledges his own culpability when he first sees the corpse of each of the ‘monster’s’ victims. For instance, Justine’s imminent death provokes him to acknowledge, ‘I [am] the true murderer’” (Feldman 68-69). Despite Frankenstein being the creator he is also the slave to his own creation, consuming him both internally and externally. The creature drives Victor into a frenzy, causing him to travel hundreds of miles and across treacherous terrain just to confront him. “Each motivated by blind revenge, destroys himself as he seeks the annihilation of the other. One is the slave of the other and at the same time master and executioner” (Feldman 69). Frankenstein is narcissistic because of his lack of empathy for others. He himself has a bride, but will not allow the creature to have one. If anyone needed a life-long companion the most, it would have been the creature. For Frankenstein to destroy the creature’s potential mate demonstrates that he is not only a hypocrite, but also heartless. “While Frankenstein is ambitious to distinguish himself in the pursuit of knowledge, the Creature wants only to love and be loved” (Feldman 69). Frankenstein is the ruthless,
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