Psychoanalyzing Victor Frankenstein Essay

Psychoanalyzing Victor Frankenstein Essay

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“When I reflected on his crimes and malice, my hatred and revenge burst all bounds of moderation.” In her novel, Frankenstein, Mary Shelley creates Victor Frankenstein, as a character who becomes psychologically unable to continue his normal life after he turns lifeless mater into a living creature through his studies of natural anatomy. Though many years have passed between the writing of Frankenstein and the making of the Television hit, Dexter, the creator of the show, James Manos Jr., created a character in Dexter that is psychologically very similar to Victor. Dexter is also unable to live a normal life after he realizes something about him is different from other human beings.
The psychoanalytic perspective tells us that behavior is determined by one’s past experiences and that these experiences have been locked in the unconscious mind and the character is unaware of them. This perspective is also based strongly on Freud’s studies of the mind. The major experience in Victor’s life was the death of his mother. Victor was very close to his mother and she died before he left to go to college in Ingolstadt. Shelley wanted to make a point by placing Victor’s mother’s death before he left for the university, to act as his separation from her and to show that he was unable to continue life in the way a usual human being could. Victor’s studies at Ingolstadt strictly went against his father’s words and could be seen as Shelley placing a type of Oedipus complex in his career pursuits. This led Victor to creating the monster to have someone he could be with. After working for 2 years, Victor finished his creation and said, “Now that I had finished, the beauty of the dream vanished, and breathless horror and disgust filled my heart” (...


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...ppression) 10.2 (1983): 125-36. JSTOR. Web. 3 Apr. 2011. .
Sill Hicks, Elizabeth. "Psychoanalytic Criticism and Frankenstein." Associated Content from Yahoo! - Associatedcontent.com. 5 Nov. 2006. Web. 31 Mar. 2011. .
Bangerter, Alison. An Examination Of the Psychological Mind of Mary Shelley's Victor Frankenstein. 4 April 2011 .
Glance, Jonathan. “Beyond the Usual Bounds of Reverie”? Another Look at the Dreams in Frankenstein. 4 April 2011 .
Hogle, Jerrold E. Frankenstein's Dream. 4 April 2011 .


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