P a g e | 1S C I E N T I F I C D E S T R U C T I O NHOW SCIENTIFIC HUBRIS AND A GOD COMPLEX LED TO THE DEMISE OF THREE BRILLIANT MEN .INTRODUCTIONFrankensteinMARYSHELLEYMary Shelley wasborn in 1797 inFrankenstein, or the Modern Prometheus is thestory of how a brilliant young man inevitably caused his own destruction by trying to “play god.”The story begins with Captain Robert Walton near theend of the 18thcentury in St.Petersburg, Russia. He intends to hire some hardy Russian men in order to sail to the NorthPole. Unfortunately, the boat gets stuck behind impassable ice, hundredsof miles from land. With nothing else to do, he writes letters to his sisterback home in England. Soon, Walton is interrupted by the sight ofa man on the ice, riding dog-sled! The man proceeds to boardWalton’s ship and begins to tell the story of hislife growing up in Geneva, and eventually about the mistake he made in creating the monster.December 6, 2016 Courtney WillisENG 2600 – Brittany StephensonLondon, England. She was the daughter of philosopher and political writer, William Godwin, and famed feminist,Mary Wollstonecraft.Shelley’s motherunfortunately died shortly afterchildbirth. Her father later remarried, but Shelley never got along well with her stepmother, and resented her for educating her step siblings but not doing the same for her.Shelleypublishedherfirst poem atage 10, andwroteFrankenstein at age18 after a bet with friends,
and future husband, on who could write the best horror novel.
P a g e | 2FRANKENSTEINVictor’s StoryVictor grew up in Geneva.His parents adopted a girlnamed Elizabeth with the intention of having Victor marry her when they were both older. While in college, Victor decided to study natural philosophy and chemistry. He also decided to study alchemy. In roughly two years, Victor had discovered how to bring abody made of human corpses back to life.Afterwards, he is sohorrified by his creation,thathefleesandabandons the creature.Victor was so horrified by the creature that his friend,HenryClerval was required to nurse him back tohealth.Back inGeneva, Victor’s younger brother, William, was murdered. The creature isthe one who committed the act, but Frankenstein’s family servant, Justine, is accused of killing him andexecuted. Victor was too afraid to stand up for her.In grief, Frankenstein goes on a trip to the Swiss Alps, but somehow runs into the monster who began to tell him what he had experienced in Victor’s absence.When Frankenstein fled,he found himself alone and hideous. No one, except for one blind old man, would accept him. He revealed himself to the family of the blind man, hoping theywould find compassion and accept them, but they drove him away likeall the others. When he ran across William, he killed the boy out of revenge. The creature was angry, alone, and miserable. He then asks Frankenstein to provide him with a female companion.