Tag Archive: survival

Comforting Relations

In Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, the topics of immigration and the constant desire to belong within society are prominent and are important to understanding an individual’s identity. For example, the creature insists on proving “the truth of my tale” by providing Victor with the letters from the Muslim Arab immigrant from Turkey named Safie. Victor is in great need of understanding the creature’s struggles and the internalized colonization that suppresses him from further prospering in life. The creature is diligent in his quest for belonging within society, for his journey towards societal acceptance is similar to that of Safie and Felix’s. The letters describe the father and daughter’s situation, explaining, “the Turk entered his daughter’s apartment, and told her hastily, that he had reason to believe that his residence at Leghorn had been divulged, and that he should speedily be delivered up to the French government”, (Shelley 113).

Similarly, Frankenstein’s creation is put in the same situation as the Muslim immigrants, who are told that they are going to be turned into law enforcement officials. The creature relates to these immigrants because he also experiences these emotions from being an outcast in society. The creature solely longs to belong and feel accepted by the people of the village in which he resides, but knows that this craving is not likely to be fulfilled. Additionally, Felix and the creature can be seen as inhabitants of the borderland, in which they are in a constant state of indecisiveness between which country they fully belong to. Author Gloria E. Anzaldua states that residents of borderlands have the ability to create their own identity and not conform to societal wants and desires. Using this theory, the creature and Felix are living in a state of mind that is dictated by their placement within society, in which they are in dire need of understanding their own true identity.

Written by Cathryn Flores

I disagree with Montag’s conclusion that the creature stands for the under representation of proletarians. The last paragraph on page 101, continuing on page 102, describes the cottagers, and their living conditions, in a way that makes them similar proletarians.

In this passage the creature revealed the cottagers situation when it came to their nutrition. According to the creature, they suffered poverty in a “distressing degree” (101), which lead to not having reliable resources. In addition, the creature told that all their food was obtained by themselves. They got milk from a single cow they owned as well as vegetables from their own garden. The cottagers struggle for survival can be compared to the proletariat’s struggle to survive on insufficient wages disproportionate to their labor.

Similar to proletarians, the cottagers can be placed at the bottom of the social ladder, even without having to sell their labor. In my opinion the cottagers represent the proletariat far better than the creature. The creature has no financial problems nor does he benefit from his own labor. If anything, the creature could be viewed as the capitalist, waiting to take advantage of and live off the cottagers’ little resources as well as their home.

By: Galilea Sanchez