The_delacey_family

At the end of his essay, “The ‘Workshop of Filthy Creation’: A Marxist Reading of Frankenstein”, Warren Montag concludes that in Marry Shelley’s novel the creature is “not so much the sign of the proletariat as of its unrepresentability” (480). After reading Shelley’s novel and Montag’s essay I have come to disagree with Montag and believe that the creature, in fact, helps show the representation of the proletariats in Shelley’s novel. In Shelley’s novel, the creature gives a grave description of Felix, Agatha and the old man’s living condition in which he discovers that “the cause of the uneasiness of this amiable family: it was poverty; and they suffered that evil in a very distressing degree” (101). This family is a direct representation as told by the creature of the oppressed working class; they live in a little cottage with their blind father and must fend for themselves every day.

The two children, “often suffer the pangs of hunger very poignantly; for several times they placed food before the old man, when they reserved none for themselves,” due to being lower class status, with a blind father the two young cottagers needed to take care of one another and in having so much to do during the day they would not often have enough food for all to eat so let the old man eat because he couldn’t see if they were eating as well (102).

The creature being created by the working class man, Victor Frankenstein, sympathizes with the lower class family because they are isolated to the little cottage and must fend for themselves like he has had to because he has been doing the same thing since he was created. “For the monster is a product rather than a creation, assembled and joined together not so much by a man as by science, technology, and industry, whose overarching logic subsumes and subjects even the greatest geniuses” (Montag 473). Even Victor himself is a brief representation of the proletariats because he was the creator of the creature but once the creature was finished it wasn’t what he wanted it to be and he didn’t care to see the creature.

The creature who was hiding in their cottage took notice of how “their nourishment consisted entirely of vegetables of their garden, and the milk of one cow, which gave very little during the winter, when its masters could scarcely produce food to support it” and how “the youth spent a great part of each day in collecting wood for the family fire” (101-102). Seeing the family struggle just to stay warm at night, the creature, “took his tools and brought home firing sufficient for the consumption of several days” (102). With the use of the word “home”, the creature is considering himself as part of their family which therefore makes him a representation of the proletariat rather than a non-representation of the proletariat.

-Alina Cantero