Sympathy in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein Frankenstein for many people is a huge fiendish monster, a brainless oaf with a couple of neck bolts, who is a horrible murderer. This image has been created by Boris Karloff and other television/film images. I also thought like that, believing Frankenstein to be a monstrous murderer, so when I was met with the text I was surprised to find as a mad scientist who creates a monster. This changed my opinion greatly at first. As the central characters were the narrators, they were obviously going to be bias in their description of the novel.
The monster that Frankenstein creates has kind-hearted morals, but because society harms him based on his hideous appearance. Because of his treatment, he transforms into a murderous monster, pointing to the destructive power of societal criticism. Society rapidly judges the monster and forms opinions based on his outside appearance rather than his internal intentions. After creating the monster, Victor reflects on his work: “How can I describe my emotions at this catastrophe...His yellow skin scarcely covered the work of muscles and arteries beneath...formed a more horrid contrast with his watery eyes, that seemed almost of the same colour as the dun-white sockets in which they were set, his shriveled complexion and straight black lips” (Shelley 55-56). Victor’s description of his monster takes on a negative perspective.
Even though it appears on the surface that Frankenstein's monster exhibits actions that appear to be evil and malicious, the reader cannot help but to sympathize with his problems. From the very beginning it is obvious that the monster only wants the approval and the acceptance of his creator. The monster is a type of character that can be compared to a child because the monster like a child only wants the parents to love and to accept them for who they are. In many cases children almost break their backs to be accepted through the eyes of the parent. The monster does not know all things that are right and wrong, and so he figures by doing the things he is doing, just maybe Victor Frankenstein would reach out and embrace him.
Further, a message from the author shines through that if one is to become isolated, their reduced social skills will cause their peers to turn against them just as the monster turner on Victor. The monster has the build and makeup of a monster, however it acts like a generous being until Victor begins to make it act like a monster. This was an aspect put into the story to show the reader that everyone has a background, regardless of what you see on the outside, there is a reason that they act the way that they do. An ignorant person would simply say that the monster acts in a reckless manner because he was created to do so, however this is far from true. It proves to the reader that there are certain things that science simply cannot change.
This hatred caused the monster to feel awful and run away in despair. Victor Frankenstein felt that he was justified to give up on his creation because it was ugly. This is completely unfair to the Monster because it has not done anything wrong, yet Victor Frankenstein feels he has the right to immediately turn his back on his creation. This is something that is frowned upon in society, but is sometimes the case. If this betrayal had not have happened, the Monsters nature could have been completely different.
Do not judge a book by its cover. A famous American proverb that says a person’s character cannot by judged by their appearance. A prime example of this is the monster from Frankenstein. On the outside, he has a terrible appearance but he is a kind soul simply looking for a little compassion. He is a victim however due to his monstrous appearance and is left in bitter misery in the story.
The idea of what is “normal” in society is what plagues the monster in Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein. Wanting to be a functioning member of society, the creation of Doctor Frankenstein is judged based on his physical differences rather than given a chance to show his true nature. However, society is not always to blame for a person or creatures’ adversity with society. For Frankenstein’s creature, who will be addressed, unjustly, as “The Monster” for the remainder of this essay, society was to blame for his unfair treatment. The Monster, contrary to his appearance, had a warm heart and relentlessly tried to break through human’s prejudice to his different image.
The novel provides no explanation for the creature 's ugliness, and if we are tempted to account for it psychologically as a mere projection of Frankenstein 's guilty revulsion from his deed, we run up against the evidence of the other characters ' reactions. The monster appears frighteningly ugly not just to his creator but to all who see him.” The fact that the monster is ugly, made him receive different treatment from his creator and from everyone else who saw him. So, when the creature finally realizes that he can no longer hope to be treated nicely by anyone, he must start viewing them the way they look upon him. This is shown when he states, “Yet mine shall not be the submission of abject slavery. I will revenge my injuries; if I cannot inspire love, I will cause fear, and chiefly towards you my arch-enemy, because my creator, do I swear inextinguishable hatred.
Walton prohibits his thrive for knowledge to be exceeded, whereas Frankenstein allows his compulsive obsession to lead to his death. By contrasting these two characters, the reader is able to grasp an understanding of the evil that has forsaken Frankenstein. Though his appearance is one of a human being, his drive for success has transformed him into a character that he views as his creature, monstrous and destructive, without having the appearance of a grotesque fiend. Mary Shelley depicts Frankenstein as someone more monstrous than his own creation. As of the beginning of the novel, Frankenstein’s stories include an underlying tragedy that will later lead to his downfall, “I feel pleasure in dwelling on the recoll... ... middle of paper ... ...itive qualities he possesses, such as his ability to acknowledge the importance of a family.
Not only does the reader criticize and pity Frankenstein, but the reader also empathizes with Frankenstein’s creation. He was unjustly shunned by society because of his physical appearance. On the other hand, the reader realizes that like Frankenstein, the creation can not be sympathized with entirely. He too exhibits traits that make him appear villainous. It is the duality of these two characters that make Frankenstein and his creation two of the most appealing characters of the nineteenth century.