The Real Monster in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein Essay

The Real Monster in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein Essay

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The Real Monster in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein


Mary Shelley was born in London on 30 August 1797, the only child of
two notable intellects. Her father was the philosopher William Godwin,
and her mother was a pioneering feminist, who had died only eight days
after Mary's birth. When Shelley wrote the novel Frankenstein, she
said that her desire was to 'curdle the blood, and quicken the
beatings of the heart.' This indicates to the reader that the novel
should be placed in the gothic genre. Typical gothic genres place
emphasis on aspects on fear and terror, the presence of the
supernatural and the use of highly stereotypical characters.

Although Frankenstein is essentially a gothic novel, it also has
significant connections with the Romantic Movement. This link was
almost inevitable considering Shelley's background. Her father,
Godwin, had a huge impact on English Romantic poetry, and another
notable Romantic, Lord Byron, was a life-long friend of the family.
Also her husband, Percy Shelley, was one of the key Romantic poets.
There are specific themes in Frankenstein that show relevance to
Romanticism. There is a concern with social reform, a preoccupation
with the role of the poet and the workings of the imagination, and an
interest in nature. The Romantic Movement is often associated with the
French revolution, which was seen by Godwin, and other Romantics, as
the beginnings of a new age and justice for all. It was a time of
social unrest and political activity. Shelley's Frankenstein is
certainly concerned with the corruption of social institutions. The
creation of the man, also suggests that she has little faith in the
inno...


... middle of paper ...


...ement; he makes his family
suffer misery when he doesn't acknowledge their constant support and
love for him and most of all, he makes himself suffer huge amounts
through his own unplanned and unthought-of actions.

Also, by usurping the role of God, he is performing the biggest sin:
trying to play God. By creating life himself without a woman is
against the rules of nature, this can easily be seen as a monstrous
act. This could have only brought pain, misery and destruction for
everyone, yet Victor was blind to these possibilities. Victor has all
his loved ones taken away from him because of his own actions, simply
because he failed to 'father' his own creation. Frankenstein had an
overwhelming desire to be recognized as a medical genius. This desire
to satisfy his own ego grew into something that made him a monster.

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