Ambition in Frankenstein Essay Example
“Ambition can serve you well or it can steer you wrong.”-Aaron Walker. Mary Shelley, the author of Frankenstein, displays Victor Frankenstein's change in awareness through the development of his horrendous creation. By using similar personality traits between Victor and his creation, Shelley demonstrates this alteration of Victor’s awareness as his creation further develops. With this, Victor begins to realize what his work has paved into, and what he truly created.
Victor’s first concern with his work comes when the monster kills William, the younger brother of Victor. Realizing that by creating life from the dead, that death would come back to haunt, “my [being Victor] own spirit let loose from the grave, … forced to destroy all that was dear to me.” (Shelley 60). Having left his family to create such a monster, Victor is left confused if he was in the right mind, or did his ambition take over. However, Victor was persuaded into creating a companion for his creation to protect the family, he stills had left. By doing so, Victor is reminded of what tortures he went through previously and refuses to cooperate, “Begone! I do break my promise; never will I create another like yourself…” (Shelley 145). He swears to no longer make any creations like his first, understanding that he should have never made the creation in the first place. Shelley used events like these to develop Victor’s new awareness of his work.
With the conflict Victor Frankenstein went through with his creation, leading him to a new understanding and awareness, he was able to realize where his ambition led him. Shelley displays what too much ambition could do to a character, Victor focused on if he could create life, instead of thinking if he should. Victor even warns Walton about seeking ambition, as he spent time away from his family to pursue his work instead, “Seek happiness in tranquility and avoid ambition...” (Shelley 194). Victor also mentions how his work took over his lifestyle, spending days and weeks by himself creating life, “swept away all my hopes and joys.” (Shelley 24). Shelley expresses her themes of isolation and ambition, as Victor leaves himself alone to work, staying away from close friends, coworkers, and family to work on his creation that later left him in pain and agony.
Throughout the novel Frankenstein, a relationship is developed between Victor Frankenstein and his creation. With this connection, Mary Shelley displays Victor’s new understanding of his work, as the monster terrorizes his close family and friends; the more the monster reminded Victor of himself, the more Victor could change himself for the better. Shelley’s themes of isolation and ambition were made present through Victor’s tragic work, pushing everyone away and putting work first.