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In Marry Shelley’s Frankenstein, the powerful creature represents the physical manifestation of the ugliness and selfishness of Victor’s desires as well as being the solution for his need to escape from the elements that threaten his way of life.
Victor chose to embark on the arduous task of creating what he perceived as perfection. To him, this creation was intended to be both intelligent and powerful, immortal and beautiful. He was seeking the perfect humanoid entity that he thought would be the physical materialization of the godliness he saw in himself. Instead the resulting pseudo-human that awoke before him, was repulsive, ogre like and a far cry from the angelic radiance he had so desired it to possess. He had succeeded in molding the creature as an image of himself, but was bewildered by it’s almost inconceivable wretchedness, he was unable to accept that his soul was nothing less than beautiful. So he fled as he always had when adversity arose.
This act of irresponsible cowardice is a turning point in the story as Victor dooms the
creature to the solitude and despair that will later dictate it’s vengeful endeavor.
But the creature which remains nameless throughout the book, also retained many of the qualities Victor lacked. It was capable of tenderness, selflessness, compassion and love, but at the same time it proved itself to be capable a unspeakable wickedness. Again it mirrored Victor in that it was destined for good but was corrupted and became wickedly evil.
Shelley’s depicted Victor and the creature as being one in the same, when one feel he invariably dragged down the other. This is one of the parallels between Frankenstein and Paradise lost. Shelley showed that what was to be the most beautiful and perfect, Victor or the creature, turned into wretchedness and evil. Similar to the fall of Lucifer.
Throughout the book, the nature of the creature in never really clear, the science used to bring about the creature was Alchemy, this was a strange form of chemistry that spawned many wild tales of sudden riches and sorcery. Victor was one such Alchemist, some of these where said to have discovered a complicated formula that enabled one to conjure up a humanoid creature. This creature, a Golem, had to be molded from clay using images of the molder reflected by mirrors back on to the clay. To animate the Golem, the Alchemist wrote the word Aemeath meaning “truth”, on it’s forehead. Once the Golem had served enough or became too powerful, the Alchemist would destroy it by erasing the Ae witch would only leave meath meaning “death”. But for the time it was alive it would learn from it’s creator and serve him as best it could. One could interpret the creature as something of a forsaken Golem that began serving but without the proper guidance of it master, grew aware of it’s true power and seeked revenge on the man it had been molded to resembled and serve.
Also, Marry Shelley made us of the Dopganger. The creature was a part of Victor
Victor had the appearance of humanity and the ugly spirit of a wretch, the creature had the appearance of a wretch but in it’s soul lied the seeds of humanity that Victor lacked.
This need for social interaction and the loving reciprocity of others the creature sought made it more human than Victor would ever be, in the end Victor was the evil wretch. Having never understood this, his redemption never came.
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Fiction, Literature, Speculative fiction, English-language films, Frankenstein, Organ transplantation in fiction, Golem, Frankenstein in popular culture
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