"Frankenstein"Analyse  "Frankenstein" determining if it  is written as a warning about the danger of science and technology taken too far,or as a cautionary about the undermining of a worthy...

"Frankenstein"

Analyse  "Frankenstein" determining if it  is written as a warning about the danger of science and technology taken too far,or as a cautionary about the undermining of a worthy scientific enterprise by the flaws of a particular scientist?

Asked on by frinds

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mwestwood's profile pic

mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

There are several indications that Shelley issues a cautionary warning to those who abandon intuition and communion with nature by entering into the scientific laboratory.  The foil character of Henry Clerval certainly portrays a much more human character, one of feeling and exemplary love for his fellow man against the arrogant Victor who pursues his quest for capabilities beyond the human and suffers isolation as a result.

pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

Personally, I think it is more of an indictment of science as a whole.  I say this for two reasons.

First, as post 2 points out, this was part of Shelley's philosophical program -- she was skeptical about science and worried about its potential to do harm to people.  So it makes more sense for her to write a book in which science is at fault than one where it is just some random lunatic who is ruining an otherwise worthy thing.

Second, I don't see Victor as a particularly bad person (outside of his pursuit of science.  He seems like a good guy who has been perverted by science, not an intrinsically evil person.

scarletpimpernel's profile pic

scarletpimpernel | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

Because Mary Shelley is a Romanticist, and her views would have been in conflict with the Realists of her day who sought to push science to its bounds, I think that Frankenstein is a little bit of both. It is a warning because Shelley uses Walton and Victor to illustrate how obsessions with scientific discovery and invention can lead to the endangerment and even death of others. Similarly, Shelley seems to promote the idea that those who are so set on pushing science to its limits share hubris--a dangerous arrogance, which if left unchecked might introduce ideas and creations into society that bring about harm.

dody91's profile pic

dody91 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted on

Frankenstein is in one sense the literary manifestation of an entire population's fear of scientific advancement.It serves both as a reflection of present times and a warning for the future .In another sense ,Shelley does not condemn science itself ,but rather the abuse and misuse of it by ignorant or irresponsible individuals .Either way,Frankenstein would warn us to proceed with caution as we continue to discover and to create

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