Romanticism in Frankenstein Essay

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Pages: 4

Having lived between 18th and 19th century, author Mary Shelley was greatly influenced by the intellectual movement of Romanticism. Since she was closely associated with many of the great minds of the Romantic Movement such as her husband Percy B. Shelley and Lord Byron, it is natural that her works would reflect the Romantic trends. Many label Shelley¡¯s most famous novel Frankenstein as the first Science Fiction novel in history because its plot contains the process of a scientist named Victor Frankenstein creating a living human being from dead body parts, but that is only a part of the entire novel. At its core, Frankenstein is a product of Romanticism featuring the traits of a Romantic hero on a Romantic quest, the embracement of …show more content…
Sublime nature is continually seen throughout the novel with Frankenstein and the monster¡¯s numerous individual experiences with nature, and combined on the summit of Mountanvert. Time and time again, Frankenstein experiences spiritual renewal by turning to nature after remorseful, traumatic events such as the creation of the monster and the death of William and Justine. While Frankenstein seeks the cold, harsh conditions of the Alps for comfort, as if to freeze his guilt about the death of William and Justine, the monster finds happiness in the soft colors and smells of a springtime forest, symbolizing his desire to reveal himself to the world. He says, for example, ¡°It surprised me, that what before was desert and gloomy should now bloom with the most beautiful flowers and verdure. My senses were gratified and refreshed by a thousand scents of delight, and a thousand sights of beauty.¡± (Shelley 81) Cheered by the beautiful scenes of spring, the monster is able to temporarily push away the negative aspects of his life. Many more of similar occasions occur in the novel, all of which clearly demonstrates the influence of Romanticism in Frankenstein. Yet another trait of Romanticism of the emphasis of imagination and individuality free of social conventions is paralleled in Frankenstein with the characters of Walton and Frankenstein. Walton is self-driven with his persistent passion for the dream of navigating to the North Pole and unconventional