Why Is Frankenstein Responsible For The Monster

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Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein has provided the world with not only a distinguished horror novel, but with an important source of debate and discussion. Throughout recent decades, Frankenstein has been a work of study for numerous classrooms around the world. One of the most frequently debated topics to arise has been who the responsible party is for the deaths that occur within the novel. Many consistently argue that Frankenstein’s monster is to blame, that he committed the crimes and carried through with the actions that killed William, Elizabeth, and Henry, while indirectly causing the death of Justine. However, others uphold that Frankenstein himself is responsible, due to his lack of consideration for the consequences for his actions, …show more content…
Frankenstein, on the other hand, holds much more weight and conviction. Those who believe Frankenstein to be responsible often believe the monster is innocent. This belief relates to the argument that the creation did not receive the love and attention from Dr. Frankenstein, and that it was his responsibility to help the creature in obtaining happiness through any mean possible, in turn preventing the deaths. In the work, Frankenstein says, “For the first time, also, I felt what the duties of a creator towards his creature were, and that I ought to have rendered him happy before I complained of his wickedness,” (70) and also asks, “Did I not as his maker, owe him all the portion of happiness that it was in my power to bestow” (105). These quotations can be used to persuade that Frankenstein understood that he had a paternal obligation toward his creation, but failed to do so. Because of this, many debate whether the monster is truly to blame. Some use the numerous quotes and instances where Frankenstein proclaims his own fault in the deaths of all victims; on many occasions he provides an admission of his own guilt, such as that in chapter twenty-two when he says to his father, “Justine, poor unhappy Justine, was as innocent as I, and she suffered the same charge; she died for it; and I am the cause of this – I murdered her. William, Justine, and Henry – they all died by my hands” (136). Although he did not directly kill the victims, …show more content…
The prevailing argument for this position relates once again to the idea that the monster is innocent. Many believe that like Frankenstein, society held a level of responsibility for the monster and the necessity of a positive role model of sorts and love, nourishment, and acceptance. This and the idea that the monster is like a child with a positive and negative reward system is at the center of his defense and society’s condemnation. When a child does something bad, such as lying to a parent, that child is disciplined by time out or a whipping; this causes the child to relate the punishment with his or her action, teaching that the action is negative and should not be done. This is true for the monster as well; on every occasion that the monster attempted to do good for society, he was punished. For example, when the monster rescued a girl from drowning he was attacked and shot and when he did good deeds for the cottagers, he was attacked by Felix. This abuse and lack of acceptance by society forced the monster to associate the pain of a bullet wound or of being attacked with good deeds, supporting the argument that society failed to properly teach the creation right from

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