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Consider the View that Frankenstein is a Story of Enduring Moral Relevance.

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Introduction

Consider the View that Frankenstein is a Story of Enduring Moral Relevance I am going to investigate the view that Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is a book of enduring moral relevance. I will cover the topics of acceptance in society, revenge, ambition and the consequences of scientific discovery. The major theme in Frankenstein is the great emphasis placed on appearance and acceptance in society. In modern society as well as in the society of Frankenstein, people judge one solely on their appearance. Social prejudice is often founded on looks, whether it is the colour of one's skin, the clothes that one wears and even the way a person carries himself or herself. People make instant judgments based on these social prejudices. This perception based on appearance determines the behaviour towards the person. In Frankenstein, the society of that time is similar to our own today. It is an appearance-based society, and this topic is brought to the limelight by the hideous figure of Victor Frankenstein's monster to a common human being. Every human in society wants to be accepted in an intellectual way, regardless of his or her physical appearance. Human beings all want to be accepted in society for their intellectual and physical abilities. Granted some humans aren't recognized for their abilities but acceptance is necessary. If a person is not accepted by society, he or she becomes an outcast like the monster in Frankenstein. The monster seeks acceptance immediately upon getting his new life. ...read more.

Middle

reject him. In Chapter 16 we see the first signs of his want for revenge: "Why did I live? Why in that instant did I not extinguish that spark of existence which you so wantonly bestowed? I know not; despair had not yet taken possession of me; my feelings were those of rage and revenge" (pg. 104). The monster is consumed only by a passionate desire for revenge on the human race for the wrongs it had done him. The monster goes on to kill William (Frankenstein's younger brother), Justine (a friend and servant from youth, although the monster killed her indirectly), Clerval (Frankenstein's best friend), Elizabeth (Frankenstein' wife), and his father Alphonse died from the shock. It is no surprise that Frankenstein now also wants revenge having lost all family and friends, it is natural. The monster and Frankenstein are now similar in the fact that they want revenge because they have been denied family and friends. In a way this is like the American 'War against Terrorism', because the motives for this come from huge loss of life on September 11th 2001. We are still today often provoked to murder and other such destructive acts, as the monster was, by rejection or other forms of personal loss such as breaking up of relationships. Children who are bullied when they are young or who are under achievers at school often turn to a life of crime and drugs when they are older due to self loathing and want of revenge for their hardships when they were young. ...read more.

Conclusion

To conclude, there are a number of themes of enduring moral relevance running through Frankenstein, there is definitely the debate of whether it is safe to make scientific discoveries, Mary Shelley seems to be saying that we at least have to be careful, a message that is still relevant today. There is also the idea of how ambition can lead to bad things if you become obsessed with something. Revenge is a major theme running through the novel, and indeed the end of the book is very powerful, when the monster tells us a message which is still relevant today, revenge only brings death and destruction. The lack of love which both characters have (at the end of the novel for Victor), and the lack of fatherly love by Victor is of enduring moral relevance today, because we are shown how it is impossible to live without companionship, as it is now. I think that the main and most important theme running through the book is the rejection of the monster because of his appearance, no one in the book apart from De Lacy because he was blind, listened to the monster's heart, which makes us feel compassionate for him. It is not long since Blacks were looked down on in America which is an embarrassment in our modern day society. Frankenstein is a story of enduring moral relevance in the topics I have mentioned, despite the fact that it was written nearly two hundred years ago. ...read more.

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