Yes, this is ridiculously late, and I apologize for disrupting the flow of posts on Nietzsche but I feel that it is important to get these thoughts down.
Frankenstein is such a curious tale/story, that I wonder why there aren’t more “recent” interpretations. This was my first time reading Shelly’s work, and it has left me an array of emotions, speculations and questions about the characters and oh how it is still so pertinent in our lives today. I feel as if Margret Atwood’s book “Oryx and Crake” takes an interesting spin off of the quest for knowledge and the consequences of pushing science-life boundaries too far. I say this thinking of the occasional scientific discovery that gets media attention because of controversy brought up by religious groups/the pope.
(I’m not trying to stir anything up by this statement, just trying to articulate a thought)
Science and religion have always been at odds, and I definitely felt a tension between the two in Shelly’s writing. Just as Victor survives the blinding passions that lead to his creation’s existence, the creation becomes the maker of Victor’s ruin. At times, it almost appeared as if Shelly were trying to show, not only what happens when you push the boundaries of knowledge and science, but what happens when a human plays the role of “God”.
Another thought: it was interesting how both Victor and the creation felt that life was more miserable than death, but neither of them could die peacefully without knowing that the other had also perished. But if they were so miserable living, and they wanted to continue the other’s suffering, couldn’t one have them died, knowing that then, suddenly, the other would no longer have meaning for his own life? This goes well with Nietzsche when he says “Man would rather have the will for nothing, than have nothing to will for”. With the creation’s birth and existence, Frankenstein had purpose and meaning to his life. While the creature sought happiness and acceptance but could not acquire them without Frankenstein, so when this became impossible, the creature’s existence only had meaning in the destruction of Frankenstein.
Here again, the relationship between “God” and his creation of man is replicated. In my understanding of westernized religion, essentially, it is giving meaning to people’s lives. Without the morals and guidelines that are established within religions, there would be no “route to heaven” / no reason to be “good” people. Frankenstein and his creation don’t show this exactly, but I feel as if there are many parallels between the two.
I don’t know, let me know what you think if this sparks a reaction from you.
I hope I didn’t offend anyone.