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Accepting The Extraordinary In Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

1603 words - 6 pages

My life, although not without surprises and unusual events, is dictated by predictable and ordinary elements. However, through fiction I am transported into a world of boundless imagination and extraordinary themes. One such example is evident in my response to Mary Shelley’s gothic novel Frankenstein. Through fiction, Shelley invites the reader to accept the extraordinary. Firstly, we are led to believe that Victor Frankenstein is able to create life by shocking it with electricity, and to this I responded with an imaginative curiosity. But it was the consequences of the creation provoked a stronger response from me. The element of horror Victor experiences and his reaction to the ‘god like’ qualities bestowed upon him as creator is truly extraordinary. Victor, like no other man, experiences the feeling of immense power and responsibility as creator of man, and this provoked a sympathetic response from me. Finally I also accepted and responded to the extraordinary concept of the monster, who, unlike to the majority of humanity, is created without a sense of cultural identity. Additionally, what is extraordinary to me as a reader is the humanity and intelligence the monster displays, despite the disadvantageous of his creation. This made me have sympathy for monster and served to blotch the credibility of Victor. Throughout the novel I was inclined to accept Shelley’s invitation and to explore a deeper view of humanity.

The most apparent extraordinary element in Frankenstein is the concept of galvanic creation. Shelley invites us to believe that Victor can bestow life to the inanimate monster. This achieved by stressing the power and enticement (None but those who have experienced them can conceive of the enticement of science) of science and discovery, especially in relation to the Enlightenment scientists. Victor regards the works such philosophers as │so full of genius and discrimination│ and as a reader I was caught in fantasy of his notion. Additionally, I was drawn in by the powerful language of Victor, who emphasises is prowess in the field of philosophy and the grandeur of his discovery.

Until from the midst of this darkness a sudden light broke upon me – a light so brilliant and wondrous………I was surprised that I alone should be reserved to discover this secret.

Furthermore I was gripped to the extraordinary by the following prose.

I see by your eagerness and the wonder your eyes express, my friend, that you expect to be informed of the secret with which I am acquainted: that cannot be, listen patiently and you will perceive why I am reserved in this subject.

This statement concreted in my imagination to the validity of Victor’s creating ability, hence I responded to Shelly’s invitation in a positive way, despite my knowledge of modern science.

However, my response was far stronger to the extraordinary events that follow the creation of the monster. Victor, who is initially jubilant at the fulfilment of his toils,...

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