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FRANKENSTEIN

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Jeffrey Xue

on 9 January 2014

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Transcript of FRANKENSTEIN

FRANKENSTEIN
St Petersburgh, Russia
Robert Walton sent his first letter to first letter to his sister Margaret Saville in England from St Petersburgh. In the letter he tells Margaret about his ambition to "discover the wondrous power which attracts the needle" and "contest the inestimable benefit ... on all mankind" (Shelley 15-6).
Archangel, Russia
In the second letter Walton sent to Margaret, he shows his desire to have a friend who can "sympathise with me' and accompany him on the trip to share the joy but also disappointment (19).
Arctic
In the fourth letter, Walton and his men were surrounded by ice and it closed the ship on all sides. He and his men spotted a gigantic creature on a sledge drawn by dogs going towards the north. The following morning he spotted another man, an European, on a sledge with one dog remaining, and he persuaded the man to enter his ship (25-6).
To Mrs Saville, England.
Naples, Italy
Victor Frankenstein was born at Naples. His father is Alphonse Frankestein and his mother is Caroline Beaufort (35).
Lake of Como, Italy

Victor's mother admires a lovely girl among the children of a peasant women. Elizabeth Lavenza is her name. Her mother died on giving her birth. She was presented to Victor as his "gift," which he interprets literally (35-7).
Legend
Brown - Robert Walton
Blue - Victor Frankenstein
Red - Elizabeth Lavenza
Yellow - Victor and Elizabeth
Geneva, Switzerland
Victor's temper is to avoid crowd, so he do not attach to many of his schoolfellows. However, he has bond a closest friendship with Henry Cleval, who was the son of a merchant of Geneva (38-9).
Thonon, France
Victor comes here when he's 13 with his family for a party of pleasure. This is where he first experiences science when he reads the works of Cornelius Agrippa. He continues to read about him despite his father telling him not to waste his time on it (40-1).
When Victor is 17, his parents plan for him to attend the university of Ingolstadt. His departure is delayed, however, when Elizabeth catches the scarlet fever. Elizabeth is cured of this, but Victor's mother catches it for staying near Elizabeth when she had it. Her condition worsens, and on the third day she passes away. This is the first unfortunate occurrence in the Frankenstein family (44-5).
Ingolstadt, Germany
For the next few years in his life, Victor studies science in the university of Ingolstadt. He quickly learns that the works of Cornelius Agrippa, Albertus Magnus, and Parcelsus are very outdated and starts his studies on modern science. Victor's main inspiration comes from M. Waldman, a chemistry teacher, who he considers a "true friend". Within two years, he becomes a top student at the school, and decides to do research on his own since the school has nothing more to offer. While studying the human body, life, and death, Victor stumbles upon the greatest discovery; the ability to bestow animation (43, 47, 52-3).
Victor is met by Henry after finishing his creation, and he is slowly nursed back to health by him. Once Victor has nearly recovered, he receives a letter from his father detailing the death of William, which heavily affects him. He rushes back to Geneva after hearing about this misfortune (61-3, 65-8).
Elizabeth Lavenza
Elizabeth sent a letter to Victor, hoping that he will recover from his illness soon. She also mentioned about Justine Moritz, a girl who lived in Frankenstein's house before. Elizabeth said Justine has returned to the house.
After making his discovery, Victor decides to apply it by attempting to give life to a human-like creature made from corpses. While absorbed in his work, he neglects his family and doesn't send any letters, worrying them. Once the creature is complete Victor realizes that his creature is disgusting, and he runs away from it in fear and becomes very sick (54-60).
Upon seeing the creature roam around the place of William's murder, Victor is Convinced that his creation is the murderer. To his surprise, however, the crime is blamed upon Justine Moritz, the family servant, and only Elizabeth and Victor believe her innocence. After trying to convince people of her innocence, Justine decides to confess and ends up being executed, leaving Victor with the guilt of indirectly causing the deaths of two people (77-8, 80, 87).
Victor decides to go on a journey to try to raise his spirits by viewing nature, and he ends up climbing Mont Blanc. After getting to the peak, he finally feels a bit of joy for the first time in a while, only to be interrupted by his creation. After listening to his creature's story, Victor consents to the creature's demand of creating a female companion for it (97-101, 150).
Chamounix, France
Victor returns to Geneva and plans for the task given to him by the creature. He decides that he must visit England for research, and tells his father that he wishes to travel. Before his departure, his father speaks to him about his marriage to Elizabeth, which he agrees to, and their marriage is planned to take place after his trip (155-8).
Strasburgh, France
Henry joins up with Victor on his journey to England, which greatly pleases Victor since Henry would make the journey less painful for him. By this point, Henry is very important to Victor as a comforter to his miserable life (159).
London, England
Victor finally starts obtaining knowledge so he can work on the female creature, and he thinks of how he would've loved this job in his past days. After staying for a few months, Victor and Henry receive a letter from an acquaintance telling them to visit him in Perth (163-4).
Perth, Scotland
Victor, feeling guilty for not starting his creation, decides to split up from Henry and goes to search for a remote location to start his work (167-8).
Orkney Islands, Scotland
Here Victor starts working on the female creature, enjoying it much less than when he was still innocent. While still working on the creation, he starts to wonder what consequences he might face for doing this, but he doesn't stop until he sees the ghastly grin on his creature's face. After seeing this, he decides to destroy the unfinished companion, angering the creature who swears to be with Victor on his wedding night. Victor perceives this as a threat to himself and thinks he will die when the time comes (170-3).
Ireland
After being lost at sea, Victor arrives at Italy, where he is accused of murder. When he goes to find out who was murdered, he finds the body of Henry lying lifeless, putting him in shock and making him sick again. Luckily for Victor, Mr Kirwin, the magistrate, sympathyses with him and acts very kind around him (176-83).
While still in prison, Victor is visited by his father, who reassures him that everyone else in his family is safe. With help from Mr Kirwin, Victor is able to prove his innocence and is set free. He starts heading home with his father from here (185-6).
Paris, France
On the way back to Geneva, Victor and his father stop by Paris. When Victor receives a letter from Elizabeth, he is reminded of the creature's promise to be with him on his wedding night, and he mentally prepares himself for what he thinks will be a fight to the death with the creature (189-95).
Passage Analysis
You have travelled: you have spent several years of your life at Ingolstadt; and I confess to you, my friend, that when I saw you last autumn so unhappy, flying to solitude, from the society of every creature, I could not help supposing that you might regret our connection, and believe yourself bound in honour to fulfil the wishes of your parents, although they opposed themselves to your inclinations. But this is false reasoning. I confess to you, my friend, that I love you, and that in my airy dreams of futurity you have been my constant friend and companion. But It is your happiness I desire as well as my own, when I declare to you that our marriage would render me eternally miserable unless it were the dictate of your own free choice. Even now I weep to think that, borne down as you are by the cruellest misfortunes, you may stifle, by the word ‘honour’, all hope of that love and happiness which would alone restore you to yourself. I, who have so disinterested an affection for you, may increase your miseries tenfold by being an obstacle to your wishes. Ah! Victor, be assured that your cousin and playmate has too sincere love for you not to be made miserable by this supposition. Be happy, my friend; and if you obey me in this one request, remain satisfied that nothing on earth will have the power to interrupt my tranquillity (192).
Elizabeth Lavenza is speaking in this context, and she is addressing the letter to Victor Frankenstein. At this point of the story, Victor’s dearest friend. Henry Clerval, had just been murdered by the creature. Victor has been released from the prison since he is not the murderer of Henry. He and his father is on the way back to Switzerland and he received this letter from Elizabeth in Paris. Elizabeth sent this letter because she has some explanation to say to Victor before she meets him that were previously discussed with Victor’s father.
This passage means that Elizabeth loves Victor and she really cares about him. She is telling Victor that when she saw him last autumn Victor seems unhappy. Elizabeth thinks that the reason Victor was unhappy is because he regret the relationship with Elizabeth; that he is marrying Elizabeth because he was bound by the word “honour,” the honour to fulfill his parents will. But Elizabeth does not only desire only her own happiness but also Victor’s. In other words, the marriage would actually bring her misery unless Victor actually agrees himself to the marriage, not bound by the will of his parents. Elizabeth also thinks that her affection to Victor might become an obstacle to Victor’s ambition. It tells the reader that Elizabeth loves Victor and desire their union, but she cares more about his feelings than her owns. She will be happy and satisfied as long as Victor is happy.
This passage is important to the story by telling the reader about Elizabeth’s opinion on the marriage and also gives the reader about how she feels at this point of the story. It reminds me about the departure of Victor to England and everything happens there, including the death of Henry, when Elizabeth mentioned about Vicor’s rushing departure to flee from the society last autumn. The passage is related to the themes “sacrifice” and “tranquillity.” It shows the sacrifice of Elizabeth to Victor by losing her happiness of the marriage and receive satisfaction from the happiness of Victor who might not want the marriage. It is also related to tranquillity because the passage tells the reader how Elizabeth trying to achieve tranquillity between Victor and her by sacrifice.
Victor Frankenstein
A week after receiving Elizabeth's letter, Victor makes it to Geneva. The marriage between Victor and Elizabeth is finalized, and Victor prepares himself for his meeting with the creature. He also promises to tell Elizabeth about the creature on their honeymoon (194-5).
Passage:
“The astonishment which I had at first experienced on this discovery soon gave place to delight and rapture. After so much time spent in painful labour, to arrive at once at the summit of my desires, was the most gratifying consummation of my toils. But this discovery was so great and overwhelming, that all the steps by which I had been progressively led to it were obliterated, and I beheld only the result. What had been the study and desires of the wisest men since the creation of the world was now within my grasp. Not that, like a magic scene, it all opened upon me at once: the information I had obtained was of a nature rather to direct my endeavours so soon as I should point them towards the object of my search, than to exhibit that object already accomplished. I was like the Arabian who had been buried with the dead and found a passage to life, aided only by one glimmering and seemingly ineffectual light” (Shelley 53).
Evian, France
Victor and Elizabeth go on their honeymoon at Evian. This is Victor's final moment of experiencing happiness, and it's spent while he worries about the creature. He tells Elizabeth to retire while he finds out where the creature is, then he finally realizes that the creature's target is Elizabeth, and he rushes to where she is only to find her dead. Victor has now lost everything he cares for, and the only thing he can live for is his revenge against the creature he created (196-9).
Analysis:
In this passage Victor is speaking to Walton about his discovery on how to bestow animation. By this point he is starting to tell about how his discovery has led to his doom because he doesn’t want Walton to make a similar mistake. In his story, Victor is still innocent and very passionate about his studies as he moves on to the application of his discovery.
When Victor talks about this part he is saying that once he finally found what he was looking for, it was the only thing he could think about at the time, going as far as neglecting his family to pursue his research. He’s saying that you shouldn’t throw everything away to pursue your ambitions like he did, since he lost much more than he gained from the outcome.
Victor’s discovery of animating lifeless things is the turning point in his life. If he hadn’t pursued his studies he would’ve been able to live happily without any regrets, but because he did, he has to face the consequences of constantly living in fear of what the creature will do next. These consequences eventually lead to how he is shown at the beginning when Robert discovers him.
The main themes this passage relates to are science, discovery, ambition, and knowledge. Victor’s thirst for scientific knowledge has brought him to the greatest discovery made in recent years, and he got this far because he had great ambition researching and testing many things. Science is depicted in Frankenstein as a negative thing, and Victor’s pursual of it has led him to a terrible fate.

Victor returns to Geneva and tells his father what has happened. Shocked by the terrible news, Victor's father passes away. Then Victor finally decides to tell someone about the creature. He visits a magistrate, but when told the story, the magistrate thinks he's either lying or crazy. After losing everyone he loves, Victor decides to leave Geneva forever in pursuit of the creature (201-5).
Passage:
“At these moments I wept bitterly, and wished that peace would revisit my mind only that I might afford them consolation and happiness. But that could not be. Remorse extinguished every hope. I had been the author of unalterable evils, and I lived in daily fear lest the monster whom I had created should perpetrate some new wickedness. I had an obscure feeling that all was not over, and that he would still commit some signal crime, which by its enormity should almost efface the recollection of the past. There was always scope for fear, so long as anything I loved remained behind. My abhorrence of this fiend cannot be conceived. When I thought of him I gnashed my teeth, my eyes became inflamed, and I ardently wished to extinguish that life which I had so thoughtlessly bestowed. When I reflected on his crimes and malice, my hatred and revenge burst all bounds of moderation. I would have made a pilgrimage to the highest peak of the Andes, could I, when there, have precipitated him to their base. I wished to see him again, that I might wreak the utmost extent of abhorrence on his head, and avenge the deaths of William and Justine” (Shelley 94-5).

Analysis:
In this passage, Victor is telling Walton how he abhors the creature for murdering William and Justine, and that he wishes to get rid of it before something else terrible happens. By this point in the story, Victor greatly regrets unleashing the creature into the world, and resolves to undo the “unalterable evils” which he has created so the creature won’t take anything else from him.
The passage is saying that creating the creature was Victor’s biggest mistake of his life, which he had done because he was too engrossed in his research at the time to think about the consequences of creating life. After seeing the consequences of his actions, Victor is filled with hatred for the creature, and wishes to get rid of it from his life before it’s too late. Until the creature is gone from Victory’s life, he cannot be happy or live without fear of something happening to him.
The passage is important to the story because Victor is finally starting to see the consequences of his thoughtless actions, and he suffers very much because of this. He starts to gain experience from here, and this completely changes his values in life, making him realise that his family is the most important to him, not his studies.
The main themes in this passage are regret, revenge, and experience. Victor experiences the consequences of his actions when the creature murders William and Justine, and he regrets everything he did in the sciences because of this. His solution to these consequences is to get revenge against the creature he created so nobody else has to suffer.

Death of Elizabeth Lavenza
Death of Caroline Beaufort
Passage:
“I remembered also the necessity imposed upon me of either journeying to England, or entering into a long correspondence with those philosophers of that country, whose knowledge and discoveries were of indispensable use to me in my present undertaking. The latter method of obtaining the desired intelligence was dilatory and unsatisfactory: besides, I had an insurmountable aversion to the idea of engaging myself in my loathsome task in my father's house, while in habits of familiar intercourse with those I loved. I knew that a thousand fearful accidents might occur, the slightest of which would disclose a tale to thrill all connected with me with horror. I was aware also that I should often lose all self-command, all capacity of hiding the harrowing sensations that would possess me during the progress of my unearthly occupation. I must absent myself from all I loved while thus employed. Once commenced, it would quickly be achieved, and I might be restored to my family in peace and happiness. My promise fulfilled, the monster would depart for ever. Or (so my fond fancy imaged) some accident might meanwhile occur to destroy him, and put an end to my slavery forever” (Shelley 157).

Death of Alphonse Frankenstein
Analysis:
In this passage, Victor is thinking aloud about his promise to the creature in which he said he would create a female companion for it. After hearing the creature’s story, he has decided that the best course of action he could take was to consent to the creature’s demand as this would make it go away from humanity forever, which benefits everyone.
This passage talks about how Victor struggles to work on the second creature due to his hatred of science and how he has to immerse himself in it to complete the creature’s request. Even though he hates this, he has to do it to obtain happiness and peace, as he knows that the creature could ruin his life even more if he doesn’t.
This passage is important to the story because if Victor completes the creature’s request, all his worries would be gone and he could live happily with his family for the remainder of his life. We know this doesn’t happen, however, since we see Victor at the beginning when Robert finds him, letting us know that Victor doesn’t complete the female.
The main themes in this passage are guilt and science. Victor feels guilty for creating the creature, knowing that he might’ve indirectly caused humanity’s doom, and after hearing the creature’s story he also sympathises with it, which helps him make the decision to create a female partner for it. Once again, Victor is required to research science in order to create another creature but this time he is fully aware of the horrors of science, which makes him reluctant to start.

Death of Elizabeth Lavenza
Death of William Frankenstein
Death of Justine Moritz
Death of Henry Clerval
‘My dearest friend, you must calm yourself. These events have affected me, God knows how deeply; but I am not so wretched as you are. There is an expression of despair, and sometimes of revenge, in your countenance that makes me tremble. Dear Victor, banish these dark passions. Remember the friends around you, who centre all their hopes in you. Have we lost the power of rendering you happy? Ah! While we love – while we are true to each other, here in this land of peace and beauty, your native country, we may reap every tranquil blessing – what can disturb our peace?’
‘Be happy, my dear Victor,’ replied Elizabeth; ‘there is, I hope, nothing to distress you; and be assured that if a lively joy is not painted in my face, my heart is contented. Something whispers to me not to depend too much on the prospect that is opened before us, but I will not listen to such a sinister voice. Observe how fast we move along and how the clouds, which sometimes obscure and sometimes rise above the dome of Mont Blanc, render this scene of beauty still more interesting. Look also at the innumerable fish that are swimming in the clear waters, where we can distinguish every pebble that lies at the bottom. What a divine day! How happy and serene all nature appears!’ (Shelley 197)
Elizabeth Lavenza is speaking in this context, and she is speaking to Victor Frankenstein. After the wedding ceremony was performed, Victor and Elizabeth are travelling by water to Villa Lavena, which is located the shores of Lake Como in Austria. They have agreed to spend their first days of happiness there. Elizabeth spokes these words during their journey on water, when they passed by beautiful scenery. She is persuading Victor that she is very contented even if joy is not on her face. She is trying to change the sorrowful subjects of Victor and let him enjoy the beautiful scenery.
This passage means that Elizabeth is very happy about the marriage with Victor, and that she is not sorrowful although joy is not shown on her face. She is very contented. She feels that she should not look forward to the future, but she would not accept the fact because she loves Victor. Elizabeth is also enjoying the nature and she feels joyful for the day on the waters. She basically wants Victor to be happy and enjoy the happiness together with her. The passage tells the reader that she is happy and content with the current situation, and she is worrying about how Victor feels and how he thinks about her.
This passage is important because it is the quotation that Elizabeth tells the reader about her feelings before her death. She is always worrying about how Victor feels and she thinks its her fault that Victor is sorrowful. This words reminded me of the last words of Elizabeth to Victor: “‘What is it that agitates you, my dear Victor? What is it that you fear?’” (198) Elizabeth cannot endure her thoughts anymore. She endeavored to know what Victor is agitating and fearing about, because no matter how she tries, she cannot make him happy. All her words connect together and show how much she cares about Victor. The passage relates to the theme “tranquillity” because it shows that Elizabeth is trying to make Victor happy by being embraced in the tranquillity of nature, and also Victor’s happiness will bring her tranquillity.
Passage Analysis
Elizabeth Lavenza is speaking in this context, and she is speaking to Victor Frankenstein. These words are spoken after the death sentence of Justine. Elizabeth noticed the anguish printed on Victor’s face, and she confessed to him about her wretchedness, while telling him that Victor looks more despair than her, with elements of revenge sometimes expressed. This is at the point of the story where tragedy of Victor started without stopping, and when Victor cannot enjoy happiness anymore.
This passage means that Elizabeth can see how Victor actually feels from the expression on his face. She is confessing that the recent events had made her wretched. However Victor seems more depressed than her and she is scared by the expression of revenge shown on Victor’s face. Elizabeth is trying to make Victor cheer up, because the people in the family are all depended on Victor. She is telling Victor that the remaining family member can still give happiness to him. She ask Victor to not think too much. It tells the reader that Elizabeth don’t like to see Victor to be in despair, and she feels that the family can still enjoy happiness together if they depend on Victor.
Passage Analysis
Passage Analysis
This passage means that Elizabeth can see how Victor actually feels from the expression on his face. She is confessing that the recent events had made her wretched. However Victor seems more depressed than her and she is scared by the expression of revenge shown on Victor’s face. Elizabeth is trying to make Victor cheer up, because the people in the family are all depended on Victor. She is telling Victor that the remaining family member can still give happiness to him. She ask Victor to not think too much. It tells the reader that Elizabeth don’t like to see Victor to be in despair, and she feels that the family can still enjoy happiness together if they depend on Victor.
‘My dearest friend, you must calm yourself. These events have affected me, God knows how deeply; but I am not so wretched as you are. There is an expression of despair, and sometimes of revenge, in your countenance that makes me tremble. Dear Victor, banish these dark passions. Remember the friends around you, who centre all their hopes in you. Have we lost the power of rendering you happy? Ah! While we love – while we are true to each other, here in this land of peace and beauty, your native country, we may reap every tranquil blessing – what can disturb our peace?’
Elizabeth Lavenza is speaking in this context, and she is speaking to Victor Frankenstein. These words are spoken after the death sentence of Justine. Elizabeth noticed the anguish printed on Victor’s face, and she confessed to him about her wretchedness, while telling him that Victor looks more despair than her, with elements of revenge sometimes expressed. This is at the point of the story where tragedy of Victor started without stopping, and when Victor cannot enjoy happiness anymore.
This passage is important to the story because it tells the reader that other people around Victor noticed the abnormal expression of Victor, and know that Victor knows things that they do not know. Elizabeth noticed the expression of revenge on Victor’s face, but she did not ask Victor for details on what he is angry at, because she fell tremble to his countenance. It reminds me of the act of revenge that the creature had started by killing William and later Justine indirectly. It makes the reader think of how Victor is going to revenge the creature because the creature has nothing to lose, and killing him will actually ease him since he do not need to be alienated and hated by the world anymore. Victor cannot kill the creature in the first place anyways. The passage related to the theme “revenge” because it tells the reader about the results of the creatures’ revenge on Victor that brings devastating effects on the whole Frankenstein family. It shows the build up of the hatred between the creator and the creature.
Your affectionate brother,
R. Walton
Reference to Prometheus
Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein can be related to the myth of Prometheus by some of the common ideas both stories present, and Frankenstein even has the subtitle of “The modern Prometheus”. The most obvious connection that can be made between the two is the idea of humans obtaining things that should be out of their reach. In Prometheus, the Gods willed that men should not have fire, but Prometheus feels sympathy for the Iron Race and decides to give them fire, knowing the punishment he will receive for doing so. Once the humans obtained fire, they no longer feared the Gods and were able to raise their faces to them. In Frankenstein, Victor discovers how to animate lifeless things, and he uses the power thoughtlessly to create the creature. Due to this misuse of the power, Victor loses everything he values and suffers terribly.
.Another connection can be seen by the fate of Prometheus and Victor; both of them have tried to break human boundaries, and both of them suffer eternally. Prometheus is chained to a rock to have his liver ripped out everyday, while Victor loses all his loved ones and is doomed to never find peace and happiness because of his creature.

"Prometheus." Orpheus: Myths of the World:. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Jan. 2014. <http://www.sacred-texts.com/etc/omw/omw31.htm>.
Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein. Toronto: Penguin, 2003. Print.
Work Cited
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