Frankenstein And The Subversion Of The Masculine Voice Summary

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In James Davis’ literary essay “Frankenstein and the Subversion of the Masculine Voice,” he discusses the oppression of women and the minor roles of females in Mary Shelly’s novel Frankenstein. With a feminist perspective, Davis claims, “He [Victor Frankenstein] oppresses female generation of life and of text; he rends apart both the physical and the rhetorical ‘form’ of female creativity. In fact, all three male narrators attempt to subvert the feminine voice, even in those brief moments when they tell the women’s stories” (307). Throughout his essay, Davis demonstrates the underlying message of Shelly’s subversion towards men and the social consequences of misogyny. Davis draws parallels between the three men, Robert Walton, Victor Frankenstein, and Victor’s creation, Frankenstein, in which they…show more content…
In his essay, Davis is benevolent and sympathetic towards the women in the novel, thus he is insistent on advocating for women’s rights. By revealing the suppression of women in the novel, Davis hopes to evoke emotion from his audience and that the audience will feel compassionate to support women’s rights. Davis’ essay is a cultural warning and it demonstrates that the continuation of the superiority of the masculine voice will lead to social destruction. Frankenstein, as well as the other male characters, crowd out the feminine voice, therefore Shelley presents Frankenstein is a representation of the consequences of suppressing women. In the novel, Shelley demonstrates Frankenstein as the historical aboriginal man, learning how to forage for food, learning a new language, and discovering fire. If men continue to suppress the feminine voice, then all cultural innovations will be halted and all people will return to the time of the aboriginal
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