Discuss the role of innocence in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein.

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Representative of Romanticism, the innocent personages of the unselfish and trusting Elizabeth Lavenza and Henry Clerval, who love people, beauty and nature, stand in marked contrast to the representative of Science, the proud, arrogant, and self-serving Victor Frankenstein.

As he recounts his history to Robert Walton, Victor admits early in tale that he has always been "deeply smitten with the thirst for knowledge" and was "indifferent to his schoolfellows"(Ch.II) When he enters school in Ingolstadt, Victor is angered by the professors who criticize the old natural philosophers that he has read, and despite his further enlightenment, he clings to his belief in Agrippa and holds a "contempt for the uses of modern philosophy" (Ch.III). He admits, "My temper was sometimes violent, and my passions vehement";obdurately and arrogantly, then, he pursues the secrets of life,

So much has been done, exclaimed the soul of Frankenstein—more, far more, will I achieve: treading in the steps already...

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