How Does Walton’s View of Frankenstein as “the Divine Wanderer” with “an Intuitive Discernment, a Quick but Never Failing Power of Judgement” Compare with Your View of Him from Reading the Opening Five Chapters of the Novel?

Topics: The Reader, Judgment, Novel Pages: 2 (563 words) Published: November 29, 2012
In many ways Walton’s depiction of Victor Frankenstein is made accurate through the first five chapters; Frankenstein judges Elizabeth immediately on her beauty and likens it to that of an angel who has been ‘heaven-sent’. Then, in the next chapter he describes her soul as ‘saintly’, indicating that she is as good as she is beautiful. The depiction of Frankenstein as a ‘wanderer’ is primarily true as he spent the beginning of his life travelling with his parents until they gave up their ‘wandering life’ when his little brother was born. Victor’s mind, however, never stopped wandering as he describes how he became immersed in philosophy and science in an attempt to ‘penetrate the secrets of nature’. Yet, it is questionable how far we as a reader can trust Walton as a narrator, who introduces Frankenstein before Frankenstein himself gets a chance to. Before their meeting, Walton states more than once how ‘greatly’ he needs a friend who is ‘gentle’ with ‘tastes’ like his own and a ‘cultivated’ mind. In this sense it is hardly surprising that when Walton finds Frankenstein, a man of similar intellect, he describes him as ‘gentle’ with a ‘mind so cultivated’. Indicating that due to his loneliness Walton would have found these qualities in any educated man he met. Walton’s opinion, however, becomes mainly, undisputedly and ironically true in the fifth chapter. As whatever Walton may have meant by ‘divine wanderer’ he was surely not assuming that Victor Frankenstein was ‘divine’ in the godly sense of the word. His words then had more truth in them than he anticipated, as Victor appoints himself divinity, like he did Elizabeth, by playing god and attempting to create life. Perhaps Victor bases his judgement on people’s appearances due to it always being an accurate portrayal of their personality in the past, because Victor then, makes a ‘quick’ ‘judgement’ on the creature he has created and hastily runs away, horrified by its appearance. Considering what the creature...
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