Child Negligence and Frankenstein


In Mary Shelley’s book, the monster is seen as a murderer and evil in Victors eyes. All Victor does is play the victim card, but is it the result of the monsters’ own ideas? Or is it the neglect and disgust that was given to the monster by Victor. 

I compare the monster to a child, beginning to learn the ways of the world starting at nothing. Victor immediately left after the creation of the monster and this may have affected the monster’s views and choices it made later. We will start with the monster’s social abilities. “Many neglected children feel unworthy to interact with peers, may isolate themselves and may encounter peer rejection.” (Lowenthal, 1996, p. 22). This explains the monster’s isolation towards all, as it does not make contact with other humans. 

Next, we will look at the monster’s crime spurt where it murders a span of people. Many studies have been conducted child negligence and crime, seeing if they are linked. “Abused or neglected children are more likely to be arrested as both juveniles and as adults.” this shows that the monsters murders could be linked to the neglect he was showed by Victor. The monster swore he would go after Victor’s family. This is another result of abandonment. 

The monster asks for a companion in later chapters. I feel that at this point, the monster is in desperate need of companionship that he even threatens to attack Victor’s family, so the monster has someone to be with instead of being feared or shooed away all the time. It is a cry for help, now that Victor has completely abandoned the monster it needs someone or something to care about him.  

On victors wedding night, the monster kills Victor’s new bride, Elisabeth. This is a revengeful act against Victor from the monster, as if to give him a taste of his own medicine. Victors bride, the one person who is supposed to love and care for him is now gone, just like how Victor was supposed to love and care for the monster and left. If Victor had just stayed to care and teach his own creation, he could have avoided the death of his family members and those who care about him.  

I think that Victor caused the monsters actions throughout the book. It is possible that the neglect had nothing to do with the monster’s actions, and it was just truly evil, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. Linking it to real world experiences shows that victors neglect and maltreatment is just like real world children who are thrown to the side and forgotten about. People have needs and when they are not met can be damaging and hurtful to everyone around them. All it takes is to love and care for your creations and you will see them grow and learn instead of hate and destroy.



“Child Neglect.” Child Abuse: Effects, Statistics, Types and Stories of Abuse,



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