- One of the central conflicts in Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein was that the monster was maladjusted to the society because it did not have a companion.a. This forced both Dr. Frankenstein and his monster to conclude that the only solution to the monster’s loneliness would be to create a companion, “You must create a female for me with whom I can live in the interchange of those sympathies necessary for my being. This alone you can do, and I demand it of you as a right, which you must not refuse to concede (Shelley, 174).b. Shelly uses this to symbolize how the society’s rigid ideas of acceptable expression of sexuality prevented Frankenstein’s monster from being able to live a normal life as a human being.c. The problem with the creation was merely the understanding of the creation as a monster, not a human:“Who shall conceive the horrors of my secret toil as I dabbled among the unhallowed damps of the grave or tortured the living animal to animate the lifeless clay?” (Shelley, 55).
- Mill’s idea of natural vs. arbitrary is that “unnatural generally means only uncustomary” (Mill, 1106). a. Though he was very ugly, Frankenstein’s monster was human, since he was made from human parts. b. Other characters in the story were not accustomed to humans coming into being through other than the traditional ways. Therefore, they saw Frankenstein’s creation as a monster. This prevented him from fitting into the society, which made his only option for a soul made to be another creature made by Dr. Frankenstein. c. But there was no physiological difficulty in Frankenstein having a human partner, only a cultural difference.
- Shelley uses Mill’s idea of uncustomary being unnatural to symbolize how the how perspective can alter understanding of reality. a. The biggest problem with Frankenstein’s monster was the problem of the rigid rules governing the society. b. These rules, were arbitrary, based on Mills ideas of the uncustomary. c. There are clear ramifications of this interpretation for same-sex marriage in terms of social constructions guiding sexuality. Concluding statement: The central theme of Frankenstein is how the term monster is arbitrary, but powerful when applied to someone or something.
Shelly, Mary. "Frankenstein The Norton Anthology of English Literature. Gen. ed. Stephen Greenblatt. 9th ed. Vol. E. New York: Norton, 2012.. Print.