Literary Analysis Paper on Frankenstein
Personal Literary Manifesto
I recently discovered my personal literary manifesto from reading “The Myth of Sisyphus”, by Albert Camus, after the research I did to understand the material. In his essay he discusses the fundamental conflicts between what we want and find. He thinks people will not find the meaning of life, of what they want to find. Some turn to God and praise to him and hope they would find what their looking for. Others will conclude that life is meaningless, so they have nothing to look towards for, but maybe commit suicide. Would life be worth living if that were the circumstance? If life were to turn out to be meaningless, then it would not matter. Camus then presents the idea of living with the absurd. This idea intrigued me because I attend to agree with his analogy.
The absurd is what Camus considers the main concern of “The Myth of Sisyphus”. Absurd is a contradiction that cannot be reconciled, which is finding meaning in meaningless (Camus 1582). Existentialists have no guidelines, order, or meaning in existence, some try to find superiority, or find meaning in the meaningless. Camus later introduces the idea of coexist with the absurd, which is confronting the contradiction to maintains awareness. The point is not rejecting the idea, but to make the effort of understanding the meaningless. Living with the absurd is not accepting any answers; because no one really know the real answer or it is no meaningless that there is no answer. A person should not be content with their struggles. When a person goes through a tough time in their life and don’t know how to cope, they get stuck. The person may experience a heavy weight on their body with nothing in their hands. The deep, thick, and heavy mud made out of sorrows, is pulling the person down and they feel stuck.
Literary Analysis of Frankenstein
Having the total freedom to think and obtain passion to appreciate and encounter the various experiences with a purse of a rich life is depicted as the main desire by th e creature. Victor Frankenstein is a perfect example of the existentialism’s absurd. Frankenstein is contradicting with Live and Death, when he discovers the secret of creating life. Death, representing the meaningless of the body limbs Frankenstein uses to build his creature. Life that represents the meaning because it still exists and it is what Frankenstein wants for his creation.
Reading “Frankenstein,” by Mary Shelley, the concept changed of the protagonist character, Victor Frankenstein, who created the monster, revolves from an ambitious scientist to a helpless victim of his own creation. Frankenstein responsibilities and rights within a society changed once his fascination of discovering the secret of life led him to create the monster. He was seduced by science, which inability made him isolate himself from society and the people close to him (Knellwolf & Goodall 40). His obsession of playing God endure the disasters of others and himself
Frankenstein was intoxicated with the idea of attaining godlike power of creating life. In the book Frankenstein tells Robert Walton, a traveler whose ship was stuck in ice, his story with deep details of his process. He went through churchyards and charnel-houses to collect limbs and bones for his creature. Frankenstein’s absurd idea perspective was to recycle the dead bodies, instead of worms consuming it. He confiscated limbs that were beautiful to him. While he searched throughout the fibers, muscles, and veins, he was creating an image of how and what he wanted. He described an, “astonished feeling of power placed within my hands…” (Shelley 32).
The monster eventually turns against his creator, like the fallen angel did to God. The monster was upset about how hideous he looked, that even his own creator would look away from him with disgust. The monster confronts his master exclaiming why he made him so hideous, that a least God made his creation beautiful (Small 52). In The Monster Modeled on Milton’s Adam, written essay by Christopher Small, saw similar traits between Satan and the monster by their rebellious acts against their creator, and their exiled from God’s universe. The monster goes against Frankenstein its creator.
An apparent theme throughout the novel, Frankenstein, is the awareness of the existence of a creator and the subsequent crippling of the creature as it attempts to reconcile with the burning desire to be appreciated, approved and accepted by humans. The creature by Frankenstein takes a divergent path of education and learning through observation of the activities of the humans. Frankenstein reverberates with the theme of religious references from the biblical creation story and other important parables in the bible. There are numerous allusions to the biblical teachings utilized author throughout the novel. Symbols of biblical events are rife throughout the text as the author makes an attempt to enhance the theme of creation and the relationship between the creator and the creature.
In particular, it is evident in the novel, Frankenstein, how the theme of outcast alludes to the biblical creation story of on Adam and Eve and the lost paradise. This is actually portrayed by the apparent ‘bitterness’ of the creature for being dejected by humans. This is symbolic to the turning out of Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden. Nevertheless, the monster turns out to be sympathetic with the creator after realizing the problems it has brought. By repeatedly being rejected by the human civilization, the creature turns out violent in an attempt to revenge. Another biblical allusion is seen in the manner in which the creature is left to stay with pigs and it treated like an animal. This is similar to the biblical story of the prodigal son is evident in this instance where the prodigal son lived and ate with pigs.
The creature in Frankenstein acquires morality and ethical values not through religious training but through observation of the acts of human civilization. In fact, the creature says that, “My food is not that of man; I do not destroy the lamb and the kid to glut my appetite; corns and berries afford me sufficient nourishment” (Shelley 157). The creature seemingly struggles to fully live like the humans and experience the feeling of being human. When explaining to Frankenstein the desire to be regarded fully human, the creature says, “I admired virtue and good feelings and loved gentle manners and admirable qualities of my cottagers” (Shelley 124). The creature continuously burns with desire to be accepted by humans. In fact, it further says, “The more I saw of them, the greater became my desire to claim their protection and kindness; my heart yearned to be known and loved by these amiable creatures” (Shelley 128).
Perhaps the most intriguing of feelings portrayed in the novel is the remorseful feeling by the creator. Victor Frankenstein is in such immense remorse for having created the now intolerable creature. Indeed, Frankenstein is so regretful for his desire for freedom and the eventual creation of the monster. Frankenstein says, “I had desired it with an ardor that far exceeded moderation, but now that I had finished, the beauty of the dream vanished” (Shelley 58). Frankenstein’s remorseful feeling for his desire to create a grotesque creature is so powerful that he cannot possibly get over it. Shame and disgust are all he harbors inside his heart for the creature now turned monster. When the creature demands for a companion in the form of a woman so as to feel loved, Victor almost gives in. However, his realization of the initial sin and now the likelihood of committing another serious sin capable of everlasting problems on mankind make Frankenstein stop fulfilling the creature’s wish.
The remorse portrayed by Frankenstein represents a change on his concept and view about scientific discourse and the freedom to pursue his dream of being a creator (Knellwolf & Goodall 20). Frankenstein was so annoyed with his actions to the extent that he sought to take any possible measure so as not to have any contact with the grotesque monster. Indeed, Frankenstein was determined to keep away from the creature by all means. The result of the avoidance towards his creature was very negative. The hatred and neglect took a toll on the creature and it ended up becoming very violent towards people and everything it came into contact with. As a show of rebellion, the creature went about killing the people associated with the creator and inflicting enormous destruction on anything and everything. As a way of trying to destroy the creature, Frankenstein decides to travel to the ends of the earth to try and destroy the creature. The realization by Victor about his mistake in creating the creature and the subsequent remorseful feelings towards the mistake is an indication of change of perspective about freedom. Indeed, Victor tells Robert Walton, “You seek for knowledge and wisdom, as I once did; and I ardently hope that the gratification of your wishes may not be a serpent to sting you, as mine has been” (Shelley 31).
Just like Frankenstein changes his individual concept about freedom and pursuit of his dreams, so does his creature. The creature had committed so many atrocities to its creator by killing all the people associated with him and destroying everything it came across. It had inflicted immense pain upon its creator to the extent of driving its creator to death. The creature was remorseful for the pain it had brought upon its creator; regretting every action. This in itself demonstrates a change of the creature’s concept about Frankenstein and humans in general. However, by the time the creature realizes its wrongdoings, it is already too late (Davies 52). There is so much damage that has already been done. It is not possible to bring back to life the people it has killed. Worse still, its creator has also died for the stress brought about the monster. The monster concludes, “I am malicious because I am miserable” (Shelley 147) and takes its own life.
The intriguing events in the novel are brought to an end through a painful ending. The pursuit of freedom and desire to create initially demonstrated by Frankenstein ends tragically with massive deaths of his loved ones and his possessions and eventually his own death. By the time of his death, Frankenstein manages to change his concept about dreams and aspirations realizing how dangerous his actions were. He finally overcomes the desire to create a woman creature to offer companionship to the grotesque monster. By so doing, Frankenstein averts an eternal suffering upon mankind through his own creation. Indeed, the change of Frankenstein’s perspective comes with serious and painful consequences but a reprieve to the society.
Camus, Albert. “The Myth of Sisyphus.” The Bedford Anthology of World Literature. Ed.
Crawford, J., Davis, P., Harrison, G., Johnson, D. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2009. 1581-1582. Print.
Davies, Hugh. “Frankenstein Is an Early Research Ethics Text.” Bioethics in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Ed. Wiener, Gary. Farmington: Greenhaven Press, Part of Gale, Cengage Learning, 2011. 52-53. Print.
Knellwolf, Christa & Goodall, Jane R. Frankenstein’s Science: Experimentation and Discovery in Romantic Culture, 1780-1830. Ashgate Publishing Ltd, 2008. Print.
Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein. Contributor, Hutchinson, Emily. Saddleback Educational Publishers, 2011. Print.
Small, Christopher. “The Monster Modeled on Milton’s Adam.” Readings on Frankenstein. Ed. Nardo, D., Leone, B., Szumski, B. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, Inc., 2000.
Literary Analysis Paper on Frankenstein