Frankenstein Psychoanalytic Analysis

Better Essays
Victor Frankenstein, the protagonist in Frankenstein, and his creature have been subject to many different interpretations. Some of them including a psychoanalytic approach based on Sigmund Freud 's theory, others have compared them to other characters from mythological stories as, for example Oedipus. However, only a few have analyzed Victor as a narcissist. The DSM-5, the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, lists among others the following traits: exaggerated self-importance, embellished and overstated achievements, belief of superiority in regard to others and fixation of imagination of success and power, as symptoms of narcissism. In this paper, I will demonstrate how these symptoms apply to the depiction…show more content…
“[...] the study and desire of the wisest men since the creation of the world was now within my grasp” (34). He was aware that there was still a lot of work necessary, but not once he doubted that he would achieve it in the end. “[…] but I doubted not that I should ultimately succeed.” (35) It is again a sign of his narcissistic nature which does not permit him to question his ability in the least. Hence, when deciding whether to animate a human being like himself or a simpler animal, he himself admits that his imagination, while only being able to think of the eventual success, would not allow him to settle with the easier task. “I doubted at first whether I should attempt the creation of a being like myself or one of simpler organization; but my imagination was too much exalted by my first success to permit me to doubt of my ability to give life to an animal as complex and wonderful as man.” (35) Victor 's self-absorbed nature leaves him no other choice as to always strive for the most demanding challenge, as he is confident he will not fail. Therefore, he chooses to build a human being as his project, a recreation of his own self. This undertaking eventually proved itself to be the ultimate peak of his pathological narcissism. It was his hubris as he indisputably attempted to play God. He created a 'self ' purely after himself and his ideas. At first, fulfilled by the feeling of success, he thought the creature was “beautiful” (39). But it was not long until he realized how ugly and faulty his creation really was. It crippled him when he is finally able to grasp what exactly he had created; shattered him. Because the pathological narcissist had not ever dared believe that he could possibly fail so
Get Access