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Victor Frankenstein Character Analysis


The character of Victor Frankenstein is easy to relate to and he embodies the spirit of scientific inquiry and rebellion that the Romantic age was characterized by. Frankenstein, in the novel, is beset with a mad urge to create life and thus introduce a great change in the manner in which science works in the universe. The aim of Frankenstein during the initial stages of his scientific career is to create a race of mortals who would be grateful to him for their existence. In a sense, thus, he seeks to attain the level of god by imitating him in his capacity as the creator of life. This paternalistic worldview that he takes towards life and creation is reminiscent of other patriarchal narratives such as Paradise Lost.

The protagonist of Mary Shelley’s novel is a very gentle lover and a good son who is separated from his family because of his lack of foresight during the creation of his monster. The creation of the monster is impelled by an almost primeval urge for immortality. Frankenstein seeks immortality through the creation of a race of new beings whom he envisions as perfect beings and this leads him to his doom as he dies a shadow of the happy self that he once was. The following lines point to the wild ambition of Frankenstein.

So much has been done, exclaimed the soul of Frankenstein—more, far more, will I achieve; treading in the steps already marked, I will pioneer a new way, explore unknown powers, and unfold to the world the deepest mysteries of creation. Frankenstein’s revulsion for his creature is based solely upon the appearance of the monster and thus, his superficial nature is revealed. Much of the novel deals with this dichotomy between appearance and reality.

Works Cited
Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein. Maryland: Phoenix, 2009. p 40

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