Mark Acuña


Frankenstein, written by Mary Shelly was a pretty good novel wasn’t it. It covered a lot of aspects of life we don’t usually see when reading the book for the first time. As we go through each chapter, we can see that the moral of the story covers a boy named Victor Frankenstein that creates a creature which he then regrets as it brings him despair and depression. In the short essay, “A Marxist Perspective” by Warren Montag, he goes in depth about the deeper meaning of Frankenstein and how he believes that the motive for Mary Shelly was to show the allusion between the storyline of Victor Frankenstein between the monster and the events of the English and French industrial revolution. Warren Montag points out the social stability shown as a contrast between 19th century social issues and the story of Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein. The sheer thought of a connection between the failure of both the French revolution and the English revolution through social order ties together with the connection of the failure Victor has on his attempt to create the perfect creature/species. In pages 472 in Montag’s essay, it states that “…the paradox of technologies created by human beings but whose nature defied human understanding, the mind sought refuge in the familiar language of mystery and miracle. But these new technologies and the industrial systems…increased unemployment, falling wages, rising prices of food…”. This can be seen as straight contrast between the allusion of events that unfolds during the 1790’s and early 1800’s with the industrial revolution. Technology is new and exciting at first, but then proves to be a danger and have repercussions to modern life and the society in which it lives in – just like how victor feels about his beginnings into alchemy, first is excitement, then the creation, then the unbarring deaths of his brother William, Justine, and wife. The monster is the resemblance of the parts and materials of the industrial revolution and its cons it brings with its convenience. Comparison that once the working class gets involve with high divisions, you get a community of monsters that want their way – no technology or in the sense of Frankenstein, if victor can’t make the “monster a woman to love” then victor won’t have anyone to love for himself. Furthermore, in pg. 480, Montag’s states that “If the modern (the urban, the industrial, the proletarian) were allowed to appear, the monster would no longer be a monster; no longer alone but part of a “race of devils” (144), his disappearance would change nothing. Instead, the mass is reduced to the absolute singularity of Frankenstein’s creation, which is therefore not so much the sign of the proletariat as of its unrepresentability.” This analysis from Montag demonstrates indication that he believes that if the monster wasn’t out of people’s sight, then the monster would have been seen as everyone else, nothing would have changed, and the mere horror and side-effects of industry can take a toll on the people and community that revolves around it.