frankenstein essay

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Classics of Horror
November 7, 2013
The Origins of Evil Mary Shelley's Frankenstein places an emphasis on evil and its origins. Through Victor Frankenstein's monster, Shelley implies that solitude and emotional immaturity, not an innate evil, are responsible for one's wrongdoings. Abandoned at the moment of its creation and forced to raise itself, the monster is incapable of discerning right from wrong as he fosters irrational hatreds and resentments towards mankind without opposition. His involuntary isolation not only serves as an explanation for his homicidal tendencies, but causes his untimely death. Shelley suggests that companionship is imperative to nurture a capable and self sufficient member of society. Frankenstein's Monster is a tangible representation of evil being created. Humans are solely responsible for the evidence of evil, primarily based off how they treat each other. Originally, the Monster embodies a childlike naivety which causes him to be completely unaware of his status as "an abhorred monster" (Shelley 92). Completely isolated from society, the Monster still develops a sense of self awareness which leads to the revelation of his loneliness. Desperate to cure his emotional pain, the Monster observes a family from afar and envies their happiness and connectedness. Eventually, he "hoped to meet the beings who, pardoning my outward form, would love me for the excellent qualities which I was capable of unfolding" (Shelley 196), and receive companionship and love from his ideal future friends. At this point, the Monster is clearly not evil, rather just an innocent being seeking the same validation that most humans strive to find. However, when he faces the inevitable rejection from a family who, in reality, he does not know, the Monster's personality shifts dramatically illustrating his evil side. While anger is a basic and universal emotion, the Monster's complete solitude allows these feelings of "rage and revenge" to consume him

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