Frankenstein by Mary Shelley is a romantic story that was written in Europe during the time when Europe was going through many economic and social changes. During the exploration of the story, the author brings out the enlightenment and industrialization when ideas were executed into reality. Its during this time when discoveries were created and implemented with little or no technical knowledge. The Shelley points out about Victor Frankenstein, who is the main character of the novel and about the exploration he tried to make. Through the use of metaphors, the creation of Victor gives a reflection of the industrial revolution and by the manipulation of the scientific technology how the society has been pushed into people facing their own monsters.
The Enlightenment can be termed as the idea of a persons liberation from his subservient state with the knowledge of improving the social change and improvement by the human reason. Subsequently, the revolution entails a complete dramatic change of something through political, economical or social aspects. These two factors create the basis of the critique depicted by the author.
The story by Shelley acts as the foundational text towards the scientific fiction genre. Precisely, Shelley gives an attack on the misuse and abuse of the human reason. Hence, this shows how optimistic the novel is about enlightenment and revolutionary on regenerating human beings. The author aims at giving a critique on political and scientific experiments with the agenda of embracing a better kind of creature and society. The author gives a description of Frankensteins place of birth in Geneva to give an understanding of the European revolution in terms of monstrosity.
Victor does a scientific research and experiment with the idea of reforming the society through the invention of new species. He spends two years collecting body parts with his aim of creating life. The author quotes Victor saying no one can conceive the variety of feelings which bore me onwards, like a hurricane, in the first enthusiasm of success. Life and death appeared to me ideal bounds, which I should break through, and pour a torrent of light into our dark world (Shelley, pg 58). Victor illustrates that he possessed the typical romanticism ideology which exists in most of the eras society.
However, the creation turns out to be a monster which the author equivalents to the evolution theory experimentation on an individual level which exposes skepticism about the Enlightenment belief. Its evident that Victor turns to become a product of the industrial revolution. Hence, Mary gives the critique to hit back on the scientific experiment and disapproves the human reason which according to the author is a violation of nature. Victors scenario can be related to the modern society where his creation of life represents similar feelings depicted in the scientific era. Besides, the enlightenment of knowledge and discovery is symbolized by the light or fire that created life.
Enlightenment begins when an individual gains the courage of using his or her own reason without the influences of the external forces. In this case, Victor takes the initiative to perform on his experiment being optimistic that the outcome would be positive and save the society. When Victor narrates his story to Walton, he identifies his scientific knowledge as the main reason that led to his self-destruction. Enlightenment is demonstrated in the scenario where Victor tries to conquer nature and other humans. However, Victor sees Walton as the reflection of his former self. Later, Victor shows discomfort by being haunted and plagued by his own creation and thus regrets creating the creature.
Ideally, the industrial revolution can be objectified to be embracing new machineries and quality work but the idea can be parallel to many people such as workers of Europe being replaced by the machines.
Correlating the Enlightenment period and the Europe revolution, its noticeable that the ideologies have a similar confrontation of beliefs with the bottom-line depicting how individual perceptive can turn out against expectations of the society. In the case of the European revolution, some Europeans and the British tended to view enlightenment and English as synonyms since the Glorious Revolution of 1688 favored their way.
Nonetheless, the novel is pessimistic about the enlightenment and revolution project since making a new life could give Victor a sense of accomplishment, productivity and meaning since it can be correlated into the manner in which the industrial revolution enabled creation of new work machines. Its depicted that he was inspired when he discovered the secret of creating life and this could not be stopped until his creation was complete. The author points out that science helped to fuel the progression of the new era since it was used during the early stages of industrial revolution which geared into the creation of larger work factories. Both the industrial revolution and Frankenstein were bi-products of advances within science since they led to exploration of the revolution by the European people.
In conclusion, Shelley uses the style of metaphor to demonstrate her view on Enlightenment and revolution by giving a critique story on how she views the use of human reason. It can be noted from her romantic story that either way Enlightenment or revolutionary can be perceived both in a positive and negative way.
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