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Mary Wollstonecraft advocates for equality of women in “A Vindication of the Right of Woman” and asserts that in society for women to be seen as equal, society must “wish to render men more virtuous, we must endeavor to banish all enervating modifications of beauty from civil society” (Pg 48) Wollstonecraft is stating that men must eradicate this stereotype of women being gentle and weak. If this does not occur, situations such as “Justine Moritz” will occur. The character of  “Justine Moritz” in Mary Shelley‘s “Frankenstein” is a servant that lives with the Frankenstein family and is described as appreciative and lighthearted, this is heavily reflected by the action she takes right before dying. The novel includes, “Thus the poor sufferer tried to comfort others and herself. She indeed gained the resignation she desired.”(Pg 84) Usually when your life is in danger a human’s reaction is to try to save themselves, yet the text illuminates the complete opposite. Justine is seen comforting others instead of herself, the selfless action implies that she is conscious of others which is why she is giving strength. By this point Justine has given up completely—in a way that is different from the female stereotypes, she sacrifices herself for others because she understands what’s it’s like to be looked down upon—and submits to her accusers which costs her, her life. Gender inequality clearly is seen in the novel, the fact the the Monster choose “Justine” to blame is not by chance.  

Wollstonecraft sees social class as a barrier to reach equality for women. In the novel, we are given background to the character of Justine. Justine was provided with a higher education by the Frankensteins, however, what is said about her are things like, “Justine was the most grateful little creature in the world” (pg 84)  A “creature” has the connotation of an animal, which when describing a sentient human, is seen as a form of degradation. Even though she has an education, she is viewed as inferior compared to the wealthy. An education is supposed to make a person be held to a higher standard, yet her title of servant still defines her. Furthermore, the Frankenstein’s contradict themselves as they continue to mention that a servant in Geneva is different from England and France as they state that they are not mistreated, nor belittled rather they are seen as humans and a part of the family. The Frankenstein’s state “Justine, thus received in our family, learned her duties as a servant; a condition which, in our fortunate country, does not include the idea of ignorance, and a sacrifice of the dignity of human being” (pg 66), this means that even with a status of “servant,” Justine should be treated humanely, yet the complete opposite is seen. Justine is called a creature. The social class defines who you are regardless of education or geographic location. Wollstonecraft argues that if the class structure is not changed, those with wealth decide what class is and how gender is perceived. She is killed without a trail, she is told that she will be excommunicated from the Catholic Church which ultimately leads her to states that she committed the crime. 

Levit Martinez Arias