Nature Vs. Nurture In Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

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American psychologist and well renowned author Jerome Kagan states “Genes and family may determine the foundation of the house, but time and place determine its form.” The topic of nature vs. nurture is highly known to the English literature community and is classified as a major aspect of gothic works. In the novel Frankenstein the author Mary Shelley uses the monster’s constant rejection from society to demonstrate that an individual’s traits are affected more by their environment and their surroundings than by nature. The theme of nature vs. nurture is highly debated in the field of psychology and is quite a prevalent topic of the novel Frankenstein. Nature vs. nurture is a psychology term related to whether hereditary genes or the environment…show more content…
Mary Shelly first deals with Victor’s childhood in a supportive household. Victor and his family are identified as exceedingly wealthy and kind hearted. He labels himself as being born “a Genevese” and “wealthy fortunate child” with a family that is “one of the most distinguished of that republic” (Shelley 18). This use of characterization of Victor in such an early stage in the novel is to identify the social and financial stand point of the house he was born into. Victor later explains that his ancestors, for many years, had been “counselors and syndics” (18). He carries on in stating his family with words such as, “honour, wealth,” and “integrity” (18). These strong words are carefully used by Shelley to focus on the structure and provide a description on Frankenstein’s family. Frankenstein’s prestigious history of powerful ancestors directly is…show more content…
The monster is seen as the complete opposite of Victor Frankenstein. This is due to the creature being alone, having to face the challenges of life while being at the mercy of the environment surrounding it. The creature’s young life is most influenced by nature. But the nature of the creature first starts before the creature is even created. Shelly’s uses complex and strong diction to provide the reader with a vivid picture of the inhuman way Victor created the monster. Victor saw the body parts needed to create the creature as “raw materials.” This unethical deed “had no effect upon [his] fancy, and the churchyard was to [him] merely the receptacle of bodies deprived of life,” (Shelly 38) Victor states. The nature of the creature is that of the action needed for the creature to be created; a disgusting, dishonorable act. Victor resents his creation from the first moment it is produced. He describes his emotions toward the “demoniacal corpse to which [he] had so miserably given life to” (40). Shelly’s delivery in this description of the creature is utterly shocking and very complex. Her phrasing of a depressing tone creates a melancholy atmosphere that foreshadows coming events in the creature’s life. Also the words “demoniacal corpse” causes an aggressive and miserable representation of this creation to the reader. The only

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