“Am I to be thought the only criminal, when all human kind sinned against me? ” The monster of Frankenstein gives the last human he meets in its life this inquiry. This being is born as a devil and his life is fulfilled by misfortune. Its dreams are all ruthlessly shattered by these humans he once trusted, especially his creator. It seems that all tragedies of this monster are caused by its appearance. Because of its appearance, people exclude it, detest it and afraid of it. It’s true that the being’s ugliness brings it much prejudice, however, the essential eason of its misfortune is that people see it as a non-human creature.
The being is thought as something inferior by the xenophobic mankind all the time. Therefore, the being is always alien, devil and enemy to human, and its dreams on the human would all be inevitably shattered. Using its last dream which is the hope on its creator making a female version of it as an example and utilizing Nietzsche’s descriptions and concepts of the human being to analysis it, we can find that why Frankenstein, at last, destroy the female monster is just because his sense of superiority of human over the monster. The uperiority concept of human on the being is determined and deeply-rooted.
This egocentric is ingrained in human nature that they even despise other groups inside their own species. People always define their own group as “good” and define others as bad and untouchable. Nietzsche has once described this human psychology: “to this rule that a concept denoting political superiority always resolves itself into a concept denoting superiority of soul … that only here did the human soul in a higher sense acquire depth and become evil—and these are the two basic respects in which man has hitherto been superior to ther beasts! Nietzsche thinks that this kind of egocentricity and its development is what makes human better. This mentality is so important to human that to Nietzsche most human morality comes from it: “. every noble moral morality develops from a triumphant affirmation of itself, slave morality from the outset says No to what is ‘outside’… ” The sense of self- affirmation or xenophobia establishes the base of human morality and the human morality determines how we think to a great extent. Hence it is not excessive to say that we are deeply ingrained by the thought of egocentricity.
This phenomenon is already so severe inside human species that there is even no huge difference, when people encounter another being, like the monster of Frankenstein, that they don’t even think it as their own species indeed, there is no need to say how this xenophobic feeling would amplify. Although the being that created by Frankenstein has emotions, rations, and morality, it has never accepted the respect for cognition by other human beings. Even its creator, who knows all its feelings and thought, has never thought it as human the entire time.
When his work has finished, all his passion fades. He describes his creation as “the demoniacal corpse to which I had so miserably given life. ” Frankenstein imitates his species’ shape and gives his creation life like God, but he has not given his creation love and care. We can also see Frankenstein’s cognition of his monster as non- human from how he calls it. In the beginning of their first conversation inside the valley, Frankenstein calls his monster as “vile insect” . This calling is very intriguing in fact.
When we call something insect, the object must be something insignificant and inferior to us. Therefore, besides Frankenstein’s attitude of eeing his creation as non-human, we can also strongly feel the superiority of Frankenstein over the being. In Frankenstein’s last words, he described the being as “the creation of a sensitive and rational animal” to Walton. Though Frankenstein admits that his monster has rations and feelings which are traits of the human, it is still an animal. The being, to his creator, is never humane.
The reason why Frankenstein break up his promise of making a female creature for the monster is just because of this superiority of human species. When the monster is asking its reator to make a female version of it, the power of two sides is approximately equal: Frankenstein has the ability to create what the being cares and the being has also the ability to destroy what Frankenstein cares. In the normal situation, the equal power of both sides would make a negotiation goes well because it would lead to positive feeling toward each other.
Like what Nietzsche believes: “Justice on this elementary level is the good will among parties of approximately equal power to come to terms with one another, to reach an ‘understanding’ by means of a settlement. ” It seems that based on this sense of quality and mutual respect to a certain extent, Frankenstein changes his previous hard attitude and accepts the being’s acquirement. However, Frankenstein changes his mind without any change of this potential balance of strength. The monster also has not appeared until the work is nearly done.
So, the reason why Frankenstein changes his mind could only be that there is no mutual respect based on the equal power at all between he and his monster. Frankenstein always keeps his mental superiority. He is both erudite and powerful that he can even accomplish the thing that previously could only be done by God. “This emancipated master of free will, with the actual right to make promises, this master of a free will, this sovereign man— how should he not be aware of his superiority over all those who lack the right to make promises and stand as their own guarantors..
Frankenstein is exactly this kind of man “who own power and freedom” He makes the promise not because he trusts his creation, but because he trusts himself. He and only he has the ability to make that promise. It’s the manifestation of his right, freedom, and superiority. “| thought, that as I could not sympathise with him, I had no right to ithhold from him the small portion of happiness which yet in my power to bestow. ” Frankenstein’s promise is not based on the positive feeling nor fear to the monster, and he also thought it as a bestow rather than debt.
Therefore, it is not strange that finally, Frankenstein breaks his promise when he thinks of “the existence of the whole human race. ” In fact, the perception Frankenstein holds of his creation has never changed, that is a feeling of absolute superior. What he considers when making the decision of destroying the female monster are his family and his “selflessness, self-denial, self-sacrifice”. The feeling or interest of the inferior monster never matters Frankenstein.
The monster’s power and threats are not something that could make his creator be respect of; it could only add its creator’s “bad conscience” to human. Though it is highly possible that Frankenstein destroys his work because of his emotional impulsion only, in his last words, he still affirms his behavior: “During these last days I have been occupied in examining my past conduct; nor do I find it blameable… My duties toward the being of my own species had greater claims to my attention.. I efused, and I did right in refusing, to create a companion for the first creature.. From his words, we see that Frankenstein not only believes his behavior is right but also his attitude that his own species matter much more than his creation. In other words, the interest of his own species is the first place; his creation, since is not perceived as a member of the human being, his words and concerns could be respected. Frankenstein is an absolute speciesist, just like most members of his species, and the birth of another kind of rational being can only be a tragedy in this society.