Tag Archive: Paradise Lost


“Till One Greater Man [Doomed] Us”

“Of Mans First Disobedience, and the Fruit Of that forbidden Tree, whose mortal tast Brought Death into the World, and all our woe, With loss of Eden, till one greater Man Restore us…” the great John Milton once wrote those words in a holy doctrine. Since the beginning of time, humans have required for the greatest of all men to come and save them. To restore among them a belief in power, a dash of hope, and to remind them that knowledge exists beyond the borders set forth by “nature” and other beings. I, Victor Frankenstein, was the one greater man that was meant to restore us all.

One winter evening, when the Genevan air was crisp and skies were gloomy, an idea brought forward by my alchemy studies presented itself in my thoughts. I conjured the idea to create a kind of man resistant to change, resistant to human power, and invincible to the woes caused by man. Like God, I set forth to create something that would never disobey or bring further death into the world. I deliberately isolated myself from family, friends, and the outside world to assure that the creation I was to conjure arose through the most precise and wholesome of my thinking. I spent countless days and nights planning my creation’s physique and gathering only the most beautiful bits and pieces for its body and form. Before I knew it, days turned into nights and nights were followed by day time at a quick rate which lead me to lack in sleep. But I figured to myself, as the great Milton once wrote, “What hath night to do with sleep?” Weeks passed me by and before I knew it I had gathered all the items necessary to create the perfect man. In a stuffed room in Geneva, I was going to cross the limits God had established and quickly become the hope for humanity.

One night when Geneva experienced a heavy set of rain and thunder, it became evident that that was the perfect night to finish my work. As the pieces I gathered lay perfectly on my table with bolts and latches holding it together, while being attached to electric wires, I could not help but acknowledge a discomfort in my body. However, I blamed it on the excitement I was feeling and ignored the discomfort. And curse that minute I chose to ignore it! When the thunder was at its strongest hour, in a sudden motion I pulled the lever and watched in awe of my own genius work as the bolts of electricity ran up and through the pieces lying on the table. But when the bolts halted and I stared in amazement, a sudden jolt made by the body lying on the table made me exhale profoundly and in a quick rush of emotions I yelled, “It’s alive!” and I walked hesitantly toward the table. But what I saw was not what I expected. Instead of creating a beautiful and perfect man, one that would walk amongst us and help our race become invincible – I had created a horrid creature. That night, before the creature I had conjured had the opportunity to rise from the table, I fled the room and set forth into Geneva ready to forget the hideous being I had just brought to life.

After three weeks of fleeing, I was able to find a small cottage about 15 minutes from Geneva and I now reside here where I am writing the details of my tale. I admit, I live in utter terror and refuse to return to Geneva because of fear in what I have created. I see shadows and figures that appear like the creature I created and I know it is only a matter of time before I am confronted and ruined. Either by the creature itself or by my deteriorating mind. Like God, I question my own power. In solitude I now live and confide for Milton once wrote, solitude sometimes is best society. Until fate crosses my path with the rugged creature, or until my own sickening and declining body and mind give up, I plan to stay as far away from my home. Like God, I too failed in creating the perfect man.

____________________________________________________________________________________________

Review:

For my creative writing project I decided to incorporate quotes by John Milton, author of Paradise Lost, in order to describe Victor Frankenstein’s way of thinking within my piece. Shelley introduced Paradise Lost within her novel as one of the pieces of literature that helped the creature establish his own knowledge and proper function. The creature eventually considered the book as a piece of biblical and historical truth and held it in an extremely high regard with no distinction between tale and reality. What I wanted to incorporate in my piece, with my knowledge of that, was give the idea that Frankenstein too held Paradise Lost in the same high regard the creature did and therefore, created a binding force between the two. Making them equal in what they used to be educated but also, to show that they had mirroring personalities in the way that Frankenstein also considered Milton’s work as a form of biblical and historical piece and lacked distinction between fantasy and reality much like the creature.

I decided to try this idea within my project because one of the biggest factors in Shelley’s novel that interested me the entire course was the use of intertextuality and the way it is evident that intertextuality played a tremendous role in characterization and development for her characters. By incorporating minor quotes from Paradise Lost and having Victor refer to the book as a “holy doctrine” I thought I could establish the idea of how found he was of the book and how seriously he incorporated its writing into his life/work. By opening my project with the opening line of Paradise Lost Book I, I thought it would create an allusion in my audience’s minds and therefore, they would know that Milton’s piece was going to be an important recurring theme in the piece.

I also decided to recreate the creation scene because not only was it my favorite part of the novel, but I thought it gave me the most leeway to interact with themes seen in Paradise Lost and themes seen in Frankenstein – like the thirst of power, the crossing of boundaries, and the quest to reign which are issues we still see in our modern day among world leaders and even scientists like Victor. I wanted to incorporate the same psychological torture Victor felt throughout the novel within my piece, but I only gave a glimpse of it toward the end because I did not want to take away from his narcissistic nature and I wanted to make sure the audience saw his original self-centered nature all the way through my piece because I think that was one of Frankenstein’s most notorious and important characteristics because it lets any audience see how he got to be where he ended up. Overall, I genuinely enjoyed giving that portion of the novel a twist and incorporating my own thoughts and ideas regarding themes I’ve grown to enjoy talking about within this course because it allowed me to see the difficulties that can arise when trying to convey a message but also doing it in an eloquent literary manner. 

-Beverly Miranda-Galindo

 

By Steven Gonzalez

I, having never read Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein before, held this basic oversimplified belief that Frankenstein was the story of an archetypal mad scientist who creates a monster who then terrorizes him for the remainder of the story. After reading the novel, I have come to discover the incredible complexity exhibited not only in the plot of the novel, but in the writing style, character development, and in the themes/motifs. Additionally, I felt that the way in which the novel was written (using frame narratives) not only aided in the development of key characters but allowed for readers to connect and empathize with multiple characters despite their horrendous wrong-doings or their great flaws in character. Moreover, I found the various motifs and themes in the novel intriguing; one that I found especially compelling was the motif of a God/Creator expressed via the relationship between Victor Frankenstein and the monster. The monster continually refers to Frankenstein as his creator throughout the novel and even expresses a sort of altruistic devotion towards Frankenstein much like is done for the Judeo-Christian God. This devotion is exemplified when the monster confronts Frankenstein to tell him his story proclaiming ” I am thy creature, and I will be even mild and docile to my natural lord and king… Remember, I am thy creature; I ought to be thy Adam, but I am rather the fallen angel” (Shelley 69). That last mention of the fallen angel is a reference to John Milton’s Paradise Lost, an epic poem that tells the Judeo-Christian Genesis story from the perspective of the devil (the fallen angel). Just as John Milton attempts to evoke sympathy in the reader for the devil, Shelley attempts to evoke sympathy for the monster in the audience despite his appalling and blasphemous actions. Shelley’s use of frame narratives makes it easy to do this by largely focusing on the monster’s personal struggles and his desire to be more “human”. The themes and motifs that I continue to find a few days after reading the novel still amaze me. What was once a basic childhood science-fiction story in my mind has become an incredible piece of literature worth analyzing and studying.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.