The Loss Of Empathy By Mary Shelley 's Frankenstein Essay

The Loss Of Empathy By Mary Shelley 's Frankenstein Essay

Length: 1300 words (3.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Frankenstein: Victor Frankenstein’s Empathy
Is the loss of empathy to be justified by the sins of humanity against you? Both Victor Frankenstein and his creature are tormented by humanity and become criminals; but does this necessarily mean that both were unable to retain their humanity. By the end of Frankenstein, Victor Frankenstein has lost most of his humanity. This is uniquely shown by comparing him to his own creation, his monster. The unnatural creature conceived in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, has enormous amounts of empathy, whereas his creator, Victor Frankenstein, has very little and therefore has lost touch with his humanity.
By the end of Frankenstein, Mary Shelley wanted the reader to discover that it was not Frankenstein’s creature that was the monster but Victor Frankenstein himself. She was able to accomplish this fully by highlighting the absence of a single trait in Frankenstein; he has no empathy. Empathy, the ability to feel with another creature, is an integral part of what makes us human, what separates us from inanimate objects and animals. It is possible for a person to register another creature’s emotions without truly being empathetic. True empathy requires an individual to merge identities and act upon both their own and the others’ emotions. It is the lack of empathy that fuels human brutality. If an offender were truly able to read and identify with a victim’s emotions it would become impossible for the offender to act against that being.
Victor at times claims to have held compassion for his monster, but was never able to act on it. After the monster had pleaded with Frankenstein to make him a companion. Frankenstein, “compassionated him and sometimes felt a wish to console him, but when [he] loo...

... middle of paper ...

...kenstein’s and the creature’s brutality in the novel and reveals how one was able to retain their humanity where the other could not. Victor Frankenstein’s creature was able to maintain empathy during and following his crimes, where as Victor himself lost all compassion with the death of his family and never acted on the small amount he once held for his monster. The truth that Mary Shelly shares with us in this novel is simply that humans can be much more monstrous than the monster. This is seen on a large scale in human history and our present world. Though true beasts are not usually involved, one group of humans treating another group as creatures is very common. Colonial and modern slavery and human trafficking are excellent examples of this. When a society is completely permeated with these ideas, it becomes hard to distinguish who is human and who is monster.

Need Writing Help?

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

Check your paper »

The Creature Made By Mary Shelley Essay examples

- The novel investigates topic about loneliness and dismissal. The creature made by Victor Frankenstein is dismisses by human culture in view of his appearance. Mary Shelley investigates the emotions of creature completely disregarded and misused by the general public. The novel turned into an impression of the inward condition of Mary Shelly. It reflects sufferings and loneliness of the creature. Loneliness and distance is one of the fundamental topics of the novel. It is outstanding that every fundamental character of the novel experience emotions of loneliness and estrangement....   [tags: Frankenstein, Mary Shelley, Emotion, Novel]

Better Essays
957 words (2.7 pages)

The Prevention of Disaster Theme in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein Essay

- Shelley’s Frankenstein can be considered as one of the first representations of a possible apocalypse that is now ubiquitous, humans will someday create something that will destroy mankind. In different works, this Armageddon takes various forms: in the iconic movie The Matrix man-made machines enslave the human race, while in another popular movie I Am Legend, a genetically engineered virus mutates and kills the vast majority of the world’s population. Frankenstein, however, is not intended to give the reader an impending sense of doom, instead it warns about the consequences of creating something, no matter the intent behind its creation, without exercising proper caution....   [tags: literary analysis, literary criticism]

Better Essays
764 words (2.2 pages)

More Sympathy for the Creature than Frankenstein Essay

- The novel, Frankenstein was written by Mary Shelley and was first published in the year 1818. Although it was supposedly a failure at the time it was released, (a time of many scientific advances, especially in human anatomy), the novel has never gone out of print and certain questions about the book have never, and most likely, will never be answered. In the essay I hope to give my view on the question: which of the two characters does the reader have most sympathy for, Frankenstein or the creature....   [tags: Mary Shelley]

Better Essays
1327 words (3.8 pages)

Essay on Mary Shelley 's ' Frankenstein '

- In 1818, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein was published. Mary Shelley has been compared to her characters since her book was published. While reading Frankenstein, multiple similarities between Mary Shelley and numerous characters in her story can be made. Similarities such as the way she grew up, her interactions with people in her life, and people she lost in her life. All of the similarities she included are negative occurrences. In Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, one of the protagonists is names Elizabeth....   [tags: Frankenstein, Mary Shelley, Victor Frankenstein]

Better Essays
1027 words (2.9 pages)

Analysis Of ' Frankenstein ' By Mary Shelley Essay

- Initial reactions I had the opportunity to read Frankenstein by Mary Shelley several years ago and it became one of my favorite books. My initial feeling was sorrow, what a wonderful story that has been slowly destroyed by Hollywood through the years. We think of Victor Frankenstein as a mad scientist trying to destroy mankind, and the monster having bolts in his neck with very little intellect. Mary Shelley’s book is completely different from the Hollywood version we are accustom to. The monster is intelligent and has emotions, the mad scientist or Victor was scared of his own creation due to his appearance....   [tags: Frankenstein, Mary Shelley, Romanticism]

Better Essays
1159 words (3.3 pages)

Essay about Review of Mary Shelley's Frankeinstein

- Frankenstein is a Romantic Horror novel written by Mary Shelley. Originally published in 1818, a revised version was also published in 1831. As a Romantic novel, Frankenstein is very emotional and addresses the connection between man and nature. This nightmarish tale was the result of a friendly challenge between Shelley, Percy Shelley, Lord Byron, and Claire Clairmont to see who could compose the most horrifying ghost story. Shelley won after conceiving the idea of Frankenstein after experiencing a dream....   [tags: Mary Shelley Frankenstein]

Free Essays
1033 words (3 pages)

Frankenstein, By Mary Shelley Essay

- Frankenstein: Mary Shelley’s Presence in Her Novel Mary Shelley’s novel, Frankenstein, has captured people’s attention since it was first written. People often wonder how much of Mary Shelley’s life is documented in her novel. From the theme of parental abandonment, to the theme of life and death in the novel, literary scholars have been able to find similarities between Frankenstein and Shelley’s life. The Journal of Religion and Health, the Journal of Analytical Psychology, and the Modern Psychoanalysis discuss the different connections between Shelley’s life and Frankenstein....   [tags: Frankenstein, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Mary Shelley]

Better Essays
1006 words (2.9 pages)

Frankenstein, By Mary Shelley Essay

- “My imagination, unbidden, possessed and guided me, gifting the successive images that arose in my mind with vividness far beyond the usual bounds of reverie,” Mary Shelley described in the forward to one of the most deeply philosophical works of her time, her novel, Frankenstein. According to Shelley in this introduction, she conceived the idea of her horror novel in a jolt of inspiration one night before bed. While some of the plot may indeed have come to her in such a spectacular fashion, a close examination of her text in comparison to her personal history reveals that many of the qualities embodied by her characters were not spontaneously conjured, but rather were derived from her own p...   [tags: Frankenstein, Mary Shelley, Percy Bysshe Shelley]

Better Essays
1891 words (5.4 pages)

Essay on Frankenstein, By Mary Shelley

- In the novel, Frankenstein, the author, Mary Shelley, draws the reader into the story by bringing life to the characters through detailed description and events. Shelly revealed her life through insight of her characters. She used her writings, as a form of psychotherapy, to release repressed emotions and experiences in her life, which included happiness, death, depression, fright, madness, guilt and regret. Little did she know that the science considered insane in the novel, is considered today as welcomed research and life saving procedures, just what the character Victor Frankenstein wanted to succeed in doing....   [tags: Frankenstein, Mary Shelley, Percy Bysshe Shelley]

Better Essays
1704 words (4.9 pages)

Frankenstein, By Mary Shelley Essays

- Frankenstein is a Romantic Horror novel originally published in 1818, and written by Mary Shelley. As a Romantic Horror novel, Frankenstein is very emotional, passionate, and states the connection between man and nature. This frightening and fearsome tale was the result of a friendly competition between Shelley and friends to see who could come up with the most horrifying ghost story. Mary Shelley set out to create a horrific novel that was also romanticized with gruesome and alarming details that brought the characters to life and portrayed many themes....   [tags: Frankenstein, Mary Shelley, Horror fiction]

Better Essays
1162 words (3.3 pages)