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Thematic Ideas in Frankenstein
Transcript of Thematic Ideas in Frankenstein
Presented By Christopher Le
Choose a novel or play in which a morally ambiguous character plays a pivotal role.Then write an essay in which you explain how the character can be viewed as morally ambiguous and why his or her moral ambiguity is significant to the work as a whole.
“But it is true that I am a wretch. I have murdered the lovely and the helpless; I have strangled the innocent as they slept, and grasped to death his throat who never injured me or any other living thing"
In this quote, the creation admits that he is an evil monster because he has transformed into a heartless killer. Since society has shunned him, the creature murders people as revenge for ostracizing him.
"I am alone, and miserable; man will not associate with me; but one as deformed and horrible as myself would not deny herself to me. My companion must be of the same species, and have the same defects. This being you must create"
Because Victor's creation is an outcast from society, the monster morally falls to man's evil side and tries to be God. In desperation, the monster orders Victor to create life by building another creation to avoid being alone in the world.
"my feelings were those of rage and revenge. I could with pleasure have destroyed the cottage and its inhabitants, and have glutted myself with their shrieks and misery."
Even though the creation pities and helps the poor family in the cottage, Felix thinks that the creature is an evil monster. Therefore, Felix kicks the monster out of the house. As a result, the creation is enraged because he has empathized with the family, but the family still treats the creation with no respect. By being an outcast from his image, the creation falls to the evil side of mankind and plots revenge.
"I was like a wild beast that had broken the toils; destroying the objects that obstructed me, and ranging through the wood with a stag-like swiftness"
This quote occurs immediately after Felix ostracizes the creation for his ugly appearance. After the creature's plan to join society fails, the monster is distraught and vindictive. Realizing that he will never be accepted, the monster feels like a wild beast and attempts to destroy everything in his path.
"I, like the arch fiend, bore a hell within me; and, finding myself unsympathized with, wished to tear up the trees, spread havoc and destruction around me, and then to have sat down and enjoyed the ruin"
In this quote, the creation compares himself to Satan because he admires chaos and destruction. After being kicked out of the poor family's cottage, the creature vows revenge upon mankind. Because of people's inadequacies, the innocent outcast has fallen to become a vindictive monster.
"My heart was fashioned to be susceptible of love and sympathy; and, when wrenched by misery to vice and hatred, it did not endure the violence of the change without torture such as you cannot even imagine"
Victor's monster is born friendly and compassionate, which is representative of man in his natural state. However, the creation is an outcast because of his ugly appearance. Since he is rejected by society, the creature experiences misery and hatred toward humans. Humanity's lack of justice and mercy has caused the creature to fall to a vindictive state.
"the love of virtue, the feelings of happiness and affection with which my whole being overflowed, that I wished to be participated"
Victor's creation admits that he is born innocent. He seeks companionship with other humans because he wants to experience the affection and joyfulness that people feel with others. However, the monster's appearance causes him to be an outcast because humans are not willing to allow an monstrous looking creature in society.
"I often took his tools, the use of which I quickly discovered, and brought home firing sufficient for the consumption of several days"
This quote demonstrates the creation's natural compassion. At first, the creature steals from the poor family in the cottage to sustain himself. However, after realizing that he is harming the family, the creation stops stealing and attempts to aid the family by cutting firewood for them.
The White Dove
When the creature is born, he is a white dove. Doves are symbols of innocence, and the color white is a symbol of purity. Similarly, the creation is naturally innocent and pure when born.
The Black Dove
After experiencing rejection and becoming an outcast from society, the creation is a black dove. Doves are still symbols of innocence, but the color black corrupts the innocence and represents the evil and revengeful part of the creature.
The Gray Dove
At the end of the novel, Victor's creation realizes that he is a gray dove. The monster understands that he is innocent, but he has been corrupted and has killed precious lives. The creation is morally ambiguous because he possesses the traits of an innocent being and a cold blooded murderer.The monster is not black and not white, but is gray, a mixture of both.
Because man is born innocent, Shelley's dark and warning novel Frankenstein demonstrates that society- people living together - accompanied with man's imperfections causes man to suffer, to succumb to man's evil side, and to fall.