The Benevolence Of Frankestein's Monster Essay

975 words - 4 pages

After his creation, Frankenstein’s monster is left in isolation, cursed to endure people’s hatred towards him. This revulsion met by onlookers is merely based on the creature’s hideous looks. The monster is not actually a monster at all. He displays more humanity than many other characters in Frankenstein. The ultimate irony is that the prejudicial belief is what caused the reanimated human to become a monster. In the nature versus nurture debate, proponents of the nature theory believe that a person is unchanging and that one’s experiences do not affect that person’s behavior. If this were true, the monster would not change as a result of his interactions with humans. It is undeniable that the creature does immoral things, but when Frankenstein’s monster saves a little girl from drowning, Mary Shelley takes a clear stance that the creature was naturally noble but became monstrous as a result of interactions with humans.
Nurture involves all of the environmental stimuli that can shape a creature. Shelley uses the monster’s bliss in a human-free environment to prove that the monster becomes angry only as a response to humans. While the monster was going to Geneva, in contrast to his earlier mood, was actually happy. “…the day, which was one of the first of spring, cheered even me by the loveliness of sunshine and the balminess of air (Shelley 142).” He uses the words “even him” to show that his happiness is surprising due to his unpleasant memories with humans. It is a “Spring” day, which usually represents rebirth. The monster was literally reborn previously, but in this case the monster’s emotions of “gentleness and pleasure”, which he thought were dead, have come back to him (142). This allowed himself to forget his “solitude and deformity”(142). No person shows him compassion because of his grotesque appearance, so the humans cause his negative emotions. Since there are no humans in his environment, the monster can forget this and be happy.
When the monster saves a little girl from drowning, his action exemplifies his natural instinct to help people in need of assistance. He hears voices causing him to hide from them. His nurturing led him to avoid humans, because he was beaten during his last encounter with people. At this point, he sees a girl playfully skipping suddenly fall into a rapid river. The monster says he “rushed from [his] hiding place” to save the girl (143). This is contrary to his original fear of humans displayed before. He had previously reasoned to keep his distance from the people, but that did not matter during an emergency. The reason he “rushed” to save her was because it was an instinct and did not require reasoning. The monster says “I endeavored, by every means in my power, to restore animation” (143). He tries to everything possible for the little girl because it was his nature to save someone in need. The phrase “restore...

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