William Godwin was a firm supporter of justice. He states in his Enquiry Concerning Political Justice that “the cuase of justice is humanity. Its advocates should be penetrated with universal good-will,” taking a clear stance on the issue of justice and its importance. Justine’s death in Frankenstein demonstrates injustice on multiple levels. First, Frankenstein betrays justice by betraying Justine, both literally and symbolically. He knows that she is innocent and that William’s death is his own fault, yet he fails to take the blame, which is an unjust act. Symbolically, Justine serves as a symbol for justice. Therefore, by betraying Justine on a general level, Frankenstein is betraying justice.

            The second example of injustice found in Justine’s death is the failure of the criminal justice system, a system that Godwin heavily critiques. Frankenstein describes the reasoning of the court ruling as “ harsh” and “unfeeling,” (Shelley 85). Shelley is here making a critique of the criminal justice system. This is shown through the fact that she dedicates her novel to “William Godwin, author of Political Justice, (Shelley 19). This dedication implies that Shelley shared views of political justice with Godwin. 

Advertisements