Frankenstein Questions and Answers
by Mary Shelley

Frankenstein book cover
Start Your Free Trial

What conflicts were presented in Frankenstein?     For example, science vs nature. Can you also give a quotation from to support it please?

Expert Answers info

Lorna Stowers eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write4,625 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and History

There are many conflicts present in Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein. Conflicts are presented in two different ways: internal conflict and external conflict. Internal conflict is the conflict which exists within a person or character (man verses self). External conflict is the conflict one faces with outside forces (man verses man, supernatural, and nature).

Internal Conflict

There are two main internal conflicts depicted within the novel. Both the creature and Victor face internal conflicts. Victor faces the internal crisis of bringing a dangerous being into the world. It is his desire to destroy the creature (given his personal feelings regarding his obligation to society and keeping them safe). The creature, on the other hand, conflicts with his own being. Given his obvious differences from others, the creature conflicts with his own existence (the whys and hows of who he is).

(The entire section contains 447 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

rileyb | Student

Sorry, that didn't really answer your question.


In Shelley's Frankenstein, the central man-to-man conflict, if you want to call it that, from chapter 17 on is Victor vs The Monster, if you will.

Once Victor chooses to destroy the female and break his agreement with the monster, the remainder of the novel amounts to a "cat and mouse" game, with the monster being the cat.  From that point on, the monster tries to kill everyone who's meaningful to Victor, and Victor tries to prevent him from doing so.

Once Victor fails to stop the monster, then the story is truly reduced to man vs. man, with Victor chasing the monster across deserts and ice and everywhere else in an attempt to get revenge.

Ironically, though, this great epic chase is at least in part a figment of Victor's fertile imagination.  He doesn't stand a chance, and the monster certainly knows it.  Taking the opportunity to mock Victor when he gets a chance, he actually leaves clues so Victor can keep chasing him.

The chase, if you can call it that, becomes the reason for both of their existences.


rileyb | Student

The effort of the monster to extract love from his creator the doctor (also the farming family) - which progresses to murderous extent as it is perpetually unfulfilled.