Frankenstein Ethical Analysis

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In Frankenstein, by Mary Shelly, the intersections between ethical validity, scientific discover, and human nature are constantly put to the test. Shelly constantly tests the boundaries between life and death, as well as the differences between humans and animals. Questionable ethics seem to be a reoccurring idea through the novel. Almost every character is put through a series of decisions, ultimately leading to both their fate, and the fate of others. Victor Frankenstein seems to be the most resounding example of this, constantly refusing to take responsibility for his actions. Throughout the novel, Shelly seems to suggest that by nature, humans make decisions based often off questionable ethical validity and motives; and, while Victor may…show more content…
For this reason, Victor’s actions seem to be motived by both ethical and unethical justification; however, throughout the novel it is clear that the unethical justifications far outweigh. Victor’s creation of the creature seems to be driven by multiple motives. He conveys to the reader that his primary reason for the creation of the creature is for the, “foundations of future success” (Pg. 53). While it may initially appear that Victor’s attempts to create the creature are solely to benefit the scientific community as a whole, this is quickly proven to be nothing more than a mask for the unethical motives Victor truly is driven by. It seems that Victor’s primary goal is to gain an almost godlike status among his fellow humans. He believes that by creating life, he would assume the role of god, saying, “A new species would bless me as its creator and source; many happy and excellent natures would owe their being to me” (Pg. 54). It seems that in contradiction to his previous, more ethical justifications, Victor is truly motivated by the power and authority he would gain by creating a new species; and,…show more content…
While Victor is slow to consent to the creature, saying, “Shall I create another like yourself, whose joint wickedness might desolate the world. Begone! I have answered you; you may torture me, but I will never consent” (Pg 145). He creates a bond between himself and the creature, held together by the promise. While it momentarily seems that Victor is taking the ethical route, Victor decides to not fulfill his promise to the creature. When Victor broke his promise, describing how he, “left the room, and locking the door, made a solemn vow in my own heart never to resume my labours” (Pg 166), it seems that Victor is sacrificing the creature’s happiness for the greater good of humanity, justifying his actions by fabricating ethical validity; however, this can quickly be proven false. It seems that the real reason Victor denies the creature a mate is because his understanding of the creature is solely appearance based. Victor seems to have created the creature to live a life of suffering. The creature is left to take on the world all by himself, and seems to be destined by Victor for only one thing—pain. Victor unethically prohibits the creature from seeking any form of happiness for an arbitrary reason, proving that his first priority is not one of high moral
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