In its preface, Frankenstein claims to be a novel that gives a flattering depiction of "domestic affection." That seems a strange claim in a novel full of murder, tragedy, and despair. But, in fact, all that tragedy, murder, and despair occur because of a lack of connection to either family or society. Put another way, the true evil in Frankenstein is not Victor or the monster, but isolation. When Victor becomes lost in his studies he removes himself from human society, and therefore loses sight of his responsibilities and the consequences of his actions. The monster turns vengeful not because it's evil, but because its isolation fills it with overwhelming hate and anger. And what is the monster's vengeance? To make Victor as isolated as it. Add it all up, and it becomes clear that Frankenstein sees isolation from family and society as the worst imaginable fate, and the cause of hatred, violence, and revenge.
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The ThemeTracker below shows where, and to what degree, the theme of Family, Society, Isolation appears in each chapter of Frankenstein. Click or tap on any chapter to read its Summary & Analysis.
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Below you will find the important quotes in Frankenstein related to the theme of Family, Society, Isolation.
Letter 2 Quotes
I have no friend, Margaret: when I am glowing with the enthusiasm of success, there will be none to participate my joy; if I am assailed by disappointment, no one will endeavour to sustain me in dejection.
Chapter 10 Quotes
All men hate the wretched; how then, must I be hated, who am miserable beyond all living things! Yet you, my creator, detest and spurn me, thy creature, to whom thou art bound by ties only dissoluble by the annihilation of one of us.
Chapter 13 Quotes
Chapter 16 Quotes
I am alone and miserable: man will not associate with me; but one as deformed and horrible as myself would not deny herself to me. My companion must be of the same species and have the same defects. This being you must create.
Chapter 20 Quotes
You can blast my other passions, but revenge remains—revenge, henceforth dearer than light of food! I may die, but first you, my tyrant and tormentor, shall curse the sun that gazes on your misery.
Chapter 22 Quotes
If for one instant I had thought what might be the hellish intention of my fiendish adversary, I would rather have banished myself forever from my native country and wandered a friendless outcast over the earth than have consented to this miserable marriage. But, as if possessed of magic powers, the monster had blinded me to his real intentions; and when I thought that I had prepared only my own death, I hastened that of a far dearer victim.
Walton, in continuation Quotes
The fallen angel becomes the malignant devil. Yet even the enemy of God and man had friends and associates in his desolation; I am alone.