吸血鬼 Dracula 代表的(意義之一)是19世紀貴族勢力衰敗對上中產階級興起的問題。狼人則是不能自己(因為他無法控制自己的身體)的中產階級。而科學怪人則是不被社會接受及關懷的下層階級的悲歌。
Shelley presents an interesting pair of characters - Frankenstein and the monster - to examine many problems of the humankind. The monster has learned many abstract concepts such as justice and social life. When he reflects on his past and behavior, issues are brought to our attention. Frankenstein too reflects on his. They share many similarities but their take on fate vs. free will is quite opposite.
Frankenstein believes fate has pre-determines his life although readers easily see that he is almost always free to choose. For example when he is in Ingolstadt, he does not bother to contact his family at all. Instead he claims it is fate to work on the project. When the monster begs to have a companion created, Frankenstein agrees and says he understands that a creator has duties toward his creation. Later he breaks his promise, provoking the monster to make him a lonely person too, but he blames it on fate again. His idea of fate, when he in fact exercises free will, shows his irresponsible character.
On the contrary, the monster is conscious of his decisions. When the French family moves away, "feelings of revenge and hatred" fill his mind and he says, "I did not strive to control them; but, allowing myself to be borne away by the stream..." He wants to destroy something but chooses "inanimate objects" instead of "anything human." Finally when Frankenstein dies, the monster says, "What does it avail that I now ask thee to pardon me? I, who irretrievably destroyed thee by destroying all thou lovedst... I was the slave... of an impulse which I detested, yet could not disobey." This shows he understands his own weakness but holds himself accountable for making himself even more miserable, although readers know that society does not leave him many other choices.
The theme fate vs. free will is a lesson about the responsibility toward oneself. Because Frankenstein refuses to take responsibility, he is full of hatred on his deathbed and even asks Walton to continue his hatred. In contrast, the monster says death will bring him peace and happiness.
Quotes from Ch.16 paragraph 12 and Ch. 24.
No external sources.
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