A Theme Of Forgiveness In Frankenstein Novel
Forgiveness is to grant pardon for or remission of. Forgiving is key to a happy and unregretful life. Some people lack the ability to forgive, which can make them depressed, isolated, regretful, or even suicidal. In Mary Shelley’s book Frankenstein, the monster’s lack of forgiveness of his creator, society, and self, leads to his tragic suicide.
The monster did not forgive his creator, Victor, for any of the mistakes he made. This leads the monster to think and act irrationally and be reprehensible. After the monster was created, he was abandoned, and when he came across any people they would scream and run away from him because he was ugly so he wanted revenge on his creator. He ran into a little boy and said “You belong to my enemy- to him towards whom I have sworn eternal revenge; you shall be my first victim” (Shelley 144). The little boy ended up being Victor’s little brother and the monster wanted revenge on victor so badly that he decided to kill his brother and then plant the evidence on another member of Victor’s family. This leads Victor to be very heartbroken because he was the one at fault for creating the monster. This was also the monster’s first kill, which leads him to destruction, vengeance, and ultimately, his own remorse.
Victor started creating a female monster for him, but as it went along Victor fell thru with the promise and destroyed iterating, they would reproduce. This made the monster very angry: “ You have destroyed the work which you have began; what is it that you intend? Do you dare break your promise?…do you dare destroy my hopes?” All the monster wanted was happiness with a mate. Without it, he would have nobody and be so reclusive. Instead of the monster forgiving Victor for destroying the creation, the monster swears revenge on him once again: “Ill go; but remember, I shall be with you on your wedding night” (Shelley 173). The monster is continuing to swear vengeance on his creator, which in the end makes himself feel so guilty.
Since the monster again fails to forgive Victor, it leads to another tragedy. On his wedding night, it was Victor’s wife, Elizabeth, that he intended to kill and not him. “I heard a shrill and dreadful scream. It came from the room in which Elizabeth had retired (Shelley 203) said, Victor. The monster believed that since he couldn’t be happy with a companion, that neither should Victor. The monster did not forgive Victor for any of his mistakes, causing more tension between them. It also leads to his anguished guilt, and in the end, causing suicide. Since the monster was never a forgiving being, it leads to conflicts with not only his creator, but also society.
Whenever the monster came in contact with society, he is always rejected and abused. Some people run from him, and some confront him and beat him. “ The whole village was aroused: some fled, some attacked me, until, grievously bruised by stones and many other kinds of missile weapons, I escaped to the open country and fearfully too refuge in a low hovel…”(Shelley 103). The monster entered a village and scared off all of the villagers except the ones that were hitting him and abusing him because they were so frightened by the way he looked. So the monster ran away and found shelter next someone’s house. The monster is always being rejected, leading to his loneliness and thirst for vengeance.
He stayed there for a while and found an opportunity to reveal himself to one of the people, hoping for acceptance and love. “Who can describe their horror and consternation on beholding me? Agatha fainted, and Safie, unable to attend her friend rushed out of the cottage. Felix darted forward and with supernatural force tore me form his father…he dashed me into the ground and struck me violently with a stick” (Shelley 136). What he went in for what not what he got, he wanted acceptance and got beat and kicked out. It made him sad and angry and he blamed Victor for his ugliness and for being an outcast in society, so he again swore revenge on Victor. “Accursed creator! Why did you form a monster so hideous that even you turned from me in disgust? God, in pity, made mad beautiful and alluring, after his own image; but from my form is a filthy type of yours, more horrid even from the very resemblance. Satan had his companions, fellow devils, to admire and encourage him, but i am solitary and abhorred.” These were the monster’s words blaming his creator, Victor for everything. And in the end, his anger and vengeance had built up so strong, that the monster kills most of Victor’s loved ones.
After the incidents in the village and with the house, he went off into the woods and saw a girl fall into a fast-moving river, he ran out and pulled her out of the water so she wouldn’t drown, when he heard someone walking towards him. “On seeing me, he darted towards me, and tearing the girl from my arms, hastened toward the deeper part of the wood…when the man saw me draw near, he aimed a gun at my body and fired” (Shelley 142). The monster was shot, sending him to the ground. “Inflamed by pain, I vowed eternal hatred and vengeance to all mankind” (Shelley 143). The monster has never learned to forgive so he is constantly wanting revenge on humankind, especially his creator. Without forgiveness, it causes such hatred and anger, which is exactly what the monster has. The monster is always seeking revenge when he should be seeking forgiveness and being content.
In the end, the monster ended up feeling guilty for all the crimes and mistakes he did. He also explained that he felt like he was insignificant and had nothing to live for. “But now crime has degraded me beneath the meanest animal. No guilt, no mischief, no malignity, no misery, can be found comparable to mine” (Shelley 230). The monster feels guilty about the crimes he did and puts himself down. He now looks at himself as the meanest “animal”. Not a creature, but an animal. He always wanted to be happy and affectionate, but the way that society and his creator treated him cause him to be angry, bitter, and want revenge. This lead to his self loathing because of how guilty he was of the crimes he did.
The monster also feels guilty for all the people he killed. He knows that it was wrong for him to kill all those innocent people. “But it is true that I am a wretch. I have murdered the lovely and the helpless; I have strangled the innocent as they slept and grasped to death his throat who never injured me or any other living thing” (Shelley 231). This shows that the monster has unbearable guilt for the people he killed. He murdered innocent people, which makes him feel even more guilty and self-loathing. But not only does he feel remorseful for murder, he also feels it for making Victor so miserable. “I have devoted my creator, the select specimen of all that is worthy of love and admiration among men, to misery…” (Shelley 231). The monster spent his whole life getting back at Victor for the mistakes he made. And the monster only feels remorse for the things he did to Victor after he dies.
After Victor’s death, the monster felt no need to live any longer and decides to leave the vessel on an ice raft and die. “I shall die. I shall no longer feel the agonies which now consume me or be the prey of feelings unsatisfied, yet unquenched” (Shelley 232). So he sets off into the ocean to free himself of his self-loathing and guilt.
It is important for people to always forgive because without forgiveness there is only hatred and vengeance. The book Frankenstein, it shows that lack of forgiveness can lead to self-loathing and unhappiness. Since the monster didn’t forgive his creator, society, or himself especially, it leads to his tragic suicide.
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