Victor Frankenstein as a Prometheus Figure

In the Note section in the beginning of Mary Shelly’s book, it mentions that the novel has the subtitle: ‘The Modern Prometheus’. After reading the book, I can definitely agree with the relevance of this subtitle.

Just like Prometheus in Greek mythology, Victor Frankenstein does something no one else dared to do. For Prometheus it was giving the human race the secrets of fire. For Frankenstein it was creating life out of death. They both thought to achieve their purposes for the sake of the development and betterment of humanity and both their creations brought them suffering. This suffering comes from Zeus for Prometheus in the form of being chained to a rock and having his liver eaten by an eagle every day. For Frankenstein, it could be said to be worse as it is his whole project, his own creation, that makes him suffer. His creature destroys him by ruining his family and murdering his friends and family members but the creature also ends up being the death of him.

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One thought on “Victor Frankenstein as a Prometheus Figure

  1. Most of the readers of Frankenstein do not know about “The Modern Prometheus” in the original title. It is interesting to see the numerous analogies between these two notable characters. Your analyze of their links help to grasp the reason of their suffering and to recognize how Shelley’s character was influenced by historical figures.

    Do you agree that Victor Frankenstein also has many parallels with Adam from “Paradise Lost”, by John Milton?

    Great post and continue the good work!
    Costa

    Like

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