FRANKENSTEIN

517 Words3 Pages
The origin of Frankenstein is almost as mysterious and exciting as the novel itself. It all began back in the summer of 1816 at the Villa Diodati on the shores of Lake Geneva, Switzerland. Mary Shelley seems not to condemn the act of creation but rather Frankenstein’s lack of willingness to accept the responsibility for his deeds. His creation only becomes a monster at the moment his creator deserts it. Essentially, Frankenstein warns of the careless use of science which is still an important issue. In feminist literary theory, it claims that Frankenstein’s act of creation is not only a sin against God and nature. It is also an act against the “female principle” which includes natural procreation as one of its central aspects. The monster, the result of male arrogance, is the enemy and destroyer of the eternal female principle. The classification of Frankenstein as a ghost story, Gothic novel or horror novel is not completely accurate. It contains no supernatural apparitions such as ghosts, witches, devils, demons or sorcerers. And other typical gothic elements such as ruined castles, graveyards and charnel houses appear only briefly or in the distance. In the novel, Mary Shelley is silent on how Victor Frankenstein breathes life into his creation. But her story did not just come from her imagination alone. Scientists and physicians of her time were tempted by the boundaries between life and death, constantly experimenting with lower organisms, human anatomical studies, attempting to resuscitate drowning victims, and experiments using electricity to restore life to the recently dead. Another origin of this monster has to do with people’s fascinations with “nature’s monsters,” the sharp deviations from normal human development. The monster “Frankenstein” is thought of as a horrible, evil creation. One informant thought of him as frustrated, loud, and uncommunicative. Some others remember aspects from the many different movies such as the monster having “the mind of a killer and the heart of a kind man.” One informant recalled the monster having a “soft spot for children” when he helped a little girl kill all the evil monsters in one of the movies. Abandoned by his creator, the monster takes revenge on Victor Frankenstein by killing his younger brother, William. Frankenstein’s silence, in the face of the monster’s murderous actions, exacts a terrible price. His self-imposed isolation from society mirrors the social isolation the monster experiences from all who see him.

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