Motherhood In Frankenstein

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In Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein there is a strong antithesis between motherhood traits that female characters possess and that Victor lacks. Motherhood traits of care, protection and self-sacrifice are what hold family together when family is a representation of the nucleus of society. In Frankenstein there is a contrast between Agatha role as caregiver and protector in the De Lacey family, Caroline’s willingness to self-sacrifice for the health of her adopted daughter, Elizabeth bravery to testify, and Victor’s abandonment of his Creature followed by the abortion of the female creature. Female characters are represented as the protectors of humanity therefore, no female characters was involved on the creation of the Creature. It is for this…show more content…
Caroline catches a fatal scarlet fever as a consequence of caring for Elizabeth. When Elizabeth catches the scarlet fever against the family’s advice and aware of her likely death she still sacrifices herself, something that Victor never does for any of his family members. As part of her dying wish she asks Elizabeth: “you must supply my place to my youngest children. Alas! I regret that I am taken from you; and, happy and beloved as I have been, it is not hard to quit you all? But these are not thoughts befitting me; I will endeavor to resign myself cheerfully to death” (45). Before dying she reaffirms that she is happy to die for the Elizabeth’s happiness. Ironically she entrusts Elizabeth with her children and not her husband or Victor who are older. This action suggests that men alone are not able to nurture children. On the other hand, Victor is the perfect example of bad parenting, since he abandons his Creature and as a consequence causes the death of his family members. In contradiction, when Caroline dies for the wellbeing of her daughter, Victor does not even recognize his responsibility toward his Creature. In Frankenstein the clear difference of the types of care given by women and the absence of care provided by the male characters argues for…show more content…
A female companion had the power to change the chain of destruction that ultimately only left revenge. The Creature was abandoned by Victor and due to his appearance he was deprived from the possibility of adoption or acceptance by a community. The Creature confronts Victor and begs for a female companion with harmless and pure intentions: “‘Oh! My creator, make me happy; let me feel gratitude towards you for one benefit! Let me see that I excite the sympathy of some existing thing; do not deny me my request!’” (148). The Creature presents to Victor a “peaceful and human” request and is willing to forgive Victor for abandoning him, however Victor’s responds with the violent and non-human destruction of the female creature.She would represents the possibility of hope and care. By destroying the possibility to have a female companion Victor ends with all hopes leaving only feelings of revenge on the Creature. Likewise after the Creature kills Elizabeth, Victor vows to: " For this purpose I will preserve my life; to execute this dear revenge will I again behold the sun and tread the green herbage of earth, which otherwise should vanish from my eyes forever” (206). At this moment both father and Creature are bound only by revenge and females are completely absent from the plot. With the destruction of the female Creature, Victor signs
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