Frankenstein A Modern Prometheus Analysis

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Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein: A Modern Prometheus compares ancient mythological tale with modern metaphors that describe mankind and its relation to a greater power, while also providing insight into life itself. Shelley’s novel, although published in 1823, is able to relate to modern society closely due to modern advances in processes such as cloning and stem cell application. The ancient Greek titan Prometheus is referenced in the subtitle, directly relating Shelley’s continuous theme in the novel to the traditional tales of Prometheus. Both of these stories deal with the initial creation of mankind in a way that explains the almost foreign nature of mankind’s intelligence. They also deal with many issues that, although were considered science …show more content…
Kronion is another identification for Zeus, son of Kronos. This is a strong example of Prometheus’ intelligence. Similarly, Victor Frankenstein in Shelley’s Frankenstein was one of the brightest minds of his time in the fields of biochemistry and medicine. He also rebelled against the inherent natural laws by creating life in an unnatural way, leading to his punishment. Prometheus did not cause the punishment of mankind simply by creating mankind out of clay, but for his trick with the ox that allowed humanity to only be required to sacrifice the worthless bones of animals instead of their meat. In parallel, Frankenstein is not punished for creating the monster, but for not fashioning the creature in a way that would fit societal norms. Both of these tales provide an example of how disrupting the order and normality of cultural relations and practices leads to turmoil. This common theme provides a reflection of how the unnatural relationship between creatures and their higher power has transcended the centuries between ancient Greek culture and our own modern …show more content…
After the creation of the monster, Victor describes him as a “demoniacal corpse” (Shelley, 39). Such a relationship between master and creature is more closely related to Zeus and his treatment of mankind. Zeus, through his anger with Prometheus, insisted “… to give them (mankind) Evil in exchange for fire” (Hesiod, Works and Days, 75). This can be taken many different ways when put into context with our modern society. One approach is that the overseer of sentient creation should instill punishment on that creation in order to maintain order. This approach can be related to the idea of a dictatorship where a leader uses strict enforcement and censorship to maintain infrastructure within a society. Another interpretation of the relationship between Victor and monster is that the creator is responsible for the actions of the creation. With this interpretation, the implication arises that the creators of life should both judge and take punishment for their creation. This explanation deals with the debated, modern topic of God and free will by taking an approach that denies personal

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