Frankenstien Essay Research Paper The Monster

Frankenstien Essay, Research Paper

The Monster’s Society

Frankenstein sets its self apart as being one of the most unique novels in the institute of English literature. Looking deeper into the story, you realize that it is not just a gothic tale about a monster that everyone is familiar with. Mary Shelley presents many ideas about the society of her time, and its effect on her own life. Some of these ideas consist of the powers of nature, the female’s role in society, and the danger of knowledge.

Shelley’s presentation of nature is very powerful. Throughout the book nature is presented as a healing device. Victor Frankenstein would seek solitude in the mountains of Switzerland, on tour in England, and down the Rhyne River in Germany, all of which would easy his mind and restore his health. “They elevated me from all littleness of feeling, and although they did not remove my grief, they subdued and tranquilled it.” (3) He found peace in the nature and finds the scenery comforting. Nature was not only used to effect the body, but also the mind. Shelley presented bad weather, i.e. storms, as a factor that lead to the construction of the monster. When Victor was 13 a storm forced him to be confined in house, where he would find a volume of Cornelius Agrippa’s works. This would begin his study of science and its possible applications. Then at age 15, Victor was witnessing a storm again and it began to arouse his thoughts about electricity and how he could use it, which he would eventually use to bring life to the monster. With that said, i believe that nature brought about the healing of the body, and the destruction of the mind.

Another point of interest Shelley presents, is the role of females in society at her point in time. If you look at all the characters in the book that are female, you notice a consistency in there outcome; they all die! Now why might that be? Well i believe it was an attempt to demonstrate, and make a point of the fact, that women were a victim of society. They were not given the respect or equality as a person that they deserved and she blatantly portrayed that in her book. “{Frankenstein} portrays the situation of women obliged to play the role of the literal in culture that devalues it,” states Margaret Homans. (1. pg 133) Ann K. Mellor an active feminist wrote a biography called, Mary Shelley: Her life, Her Fiction, Her Monsters, which was the first book length biocritical examination that uses feminine criticism to analyze the theme of female consciousness that are available in the novel. (2) Mellor points out that all the females in the novel are sexless and that Victor destroys the mate for the monster because he was not able to control its ability to reproduce. This demonstrates man’s desire to be in control of everything giving little respect to women. I agree with these points made. I believe Shelley’s intent was to educate people of female consciousness in a male dominated society.

Another intent of Mary Shelley in her work was to present the possible dangers of knowledge. Shelley was aware of the fact that technology was advancing at an incredible rate during her time period. I believe that Shelley did not except the idea that all knowledge was “good” knowledge, however, and that there were some areas beyond human understanding. She presents this idea with the creation of a monster. Victor Frankenstein’s desire to explore biological creation led to this monster that tormented him for the rest of his life. It was not until after he had went through with it and realized its consequences that he understood the effects of knowledge; “You seek for knowledge and wisdom as I once did; and I ardently hope the

gratification of your wishes may not be a serpent to sting you, as mine has

been” (3)

After reading this novel, I can’t help but realize how it relates to our society even today. With all the technology going on in this day and age, you wonder what will happen to our society, and can it survive. Are we not complicating life more rather then making it any easier? How many “monsters” have we created already, and how many more are soon to come. Let us not be destroyed as Victor was.


1. Homans, Margaret. “Bearing Demons: Frankenstein’s Circumvention of the Maternal.” Ed. Harold Bloom. Modern Critical Interpretations of Frankenstein. New York: Chelsea, (1987): 133-153


3. Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein. Tom Doherty Associates Inc. New York: 1988