What are the similarities between Victor and the Monster in  Frankenstein by Mary Shelly?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Even though he fled from his creation, I think that the monster and Victor share some distinct and real similarities.  One one hand, both seek to appropriate the world in accordance to their own subjectivity.  Victor appropriates his world through science.  Scientific inquiry and rationality allow him to see the world through his own eyes and his appropriation of it is done through this domain.  At the same time, being a product of social conditioning, the Monster ends up appropriating the world in accordance to his own subjectivity.  His frame of reference is anger and vengeance for the wrong done to him.  When the monster kills, he does so because out of his own sense of personal wrong and a lack of justice.  Remember that at the monster's "birth," his first inclination was to approach his creator and experience rejection and the pain of being shunned.  In this light, Shelley draws the argument that we are, to certain extents, the products of our own social interaction.  Within this, the monster appropriates the world in accordance to his own subjectivity, that of anger and loss.  In both experiences, the characters connect to their objective and external reality based on their own subjective experiences.

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