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Compare Victor Frankenstein and his creation. In what ways are their life experiences similar and different?

Compare Victor Frankenstein and his creation. In what ways are their life experiences similar and different?

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Victor Frankenstein was raised in a tight-knit, wealthy and relatively progressive Genevan family. He and his two brothers were encouraged to pursue science and Victor is supported in his development of this when he later attends university. His parents adopted Elizabeth when Victor is five, and he later falls in love with her. His conception of the world, then, was built on a foundation of love, support, trust and companionship. The monster, in stark comparison, is brought into the world by Victor, but immediately rejected by him: when Victor witnesses his creation, he flees in horror. Saddened by this, the creature escapes to the wilderness and develops an attachment to a poor family he witnesses living there. He learns to speak and communicate by watching their interactions and performs little acts of kindness for them. Eventually, the blind father of the family befriends him, but the rest are terrified of his appearance and they all run away. The creature’s ‘childhood’ brought him only rejection and misery: he learns that people fear and hate him, so he ultimately returns the sentiment. However, the creator and his creation do have one very important thing in common – both of them see fit to ‘play God’, Victor by creating life and the monster by taking it away as part of his revenge on Victor. Both also end the novel alone with their spouses dead: Victor destroyed the female who was to be the creature’s companion before imbuing her with life, and the creature reciprocates by murdering Victor’s bride-to-be, Elizabeth, on the night before their wedding. Though their life experiences are very different, the mistake of ‘playing God’ that both characters make leads them only to loneliness and misery from which neither ever recover.

References

Shelley, M. (1818). Frankenstein. Delaware: Prestwick House.