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“In society and every story, there is an existing protagonist who will go to great lengths to pursue their goal. In particular, I myself and one character, Victor Frankenstein from Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, clearly exhibit our willingness to go to the extremes to eradicate and overcome challenges. Although both Victor Frankenstein and I show a multitude of forms of determination, it is evident that my ability to persist and resolve problems in order to obtain what I desire surpasses and causes less destruction than Victor’s inadequate ability to do so. An investigation of the actions depicted will manifest that Victor and I are both very different from one another, and through ambition and the shaping of our destiny, it is evident that there are many similarities we share that determine either great success or failure within our lives.
It is important to control one’s ambition, or desires and wishes, to prevent them from becoming deeply afflicted by it or letting it take control of their life. To begin, both Victor and I are extremely eager and determined to finish what we start and succeed. In the novel, Victor attends a university called Ingolstadt where his professors completely discredit his love for alchemy to Victor’s dismay. Victor studies all through high school only to get to college where his teachers tell him that his knowledge and beliefs are all wrong. Despite the discouragement by his professors, Victor’s ambition pushes him to pursue his dreams and desires.
Furthermore, Victor’s shows his ability to bounce back from setbacks rather than giving up after the creature kills his family. Similarly, I have experienced many challenges and obstacles during high school and with determination and will power nothing stopped me from achieving success. I am an eager student who is determined to obtain good marks in school. However, for example, I got very discouraged when I got bad marks in advanced functions despite working extremely hard and coming in for extra help during lunch, but with determination, I responded positively to the failure and adversity that prevailed. Furthermore, procrastination causes both Victor and I to avoid taking care of our problems. After Victor creates the creature and refuses his request for a female companion, it is clear that his ambition leads to procrastination which prolongs his journey avoiding his commitment and deadline to the creature. Victor runs from his problems and travels with his friends to distract himself from his obligation to the creature and its entire existence when he says, “I avoided explanation and maintained a continual silence concerning the wretch I created” (Shelley 177). This truly shows Victor’s lack of responsibility as he creates this creature and does not take ownership of him as he chronically avoids its wishes and deliberately looks for distractions.
Likewise, my ambition takes control of me and I do not wait for opportunities. I seek them out or create them for myself and this leads me to struggle with procrastination. Procrastination really influences the way I feel the next day as all the stress just piles on me at once. It ultimately results in myself going to bed late and having to wake up early to do my homework, assignments, or tests I should have done the night before.
Finally, both Frankenstein and I learn about persistence. Moving in the right direction with a positive mindset and determination pushes us closer to achieving our goals. After being overcome with ambition and creating a horrific creature, Victor loses many of his loved ones. He wants to die himself as he cannot handle all the grief and believes it is easier to forget why he started his journey in the first place, however, he learns quickly that giving up will not solve anything. Victor states his feelings towards living: “I stretched my failing limbs upon the sandy plain and prayed for death. But revenge kept me alive; I dared not die and leave my adversary in being” (Shelley 192). Victor wishes for death but then remembers that he must avenge his lost ones and forbids the creature to prevail. Thus, Victor goes after the creature to avenge the murder of his family and friends. Correspondingly, ambition gets the best of me sometimes where it causes me to have no clarity, just a whirlwind of negative thoughts, paired with the perpetual fear of being average.
Nonetheless, I stayed persistence as learned and observed from my parents. My mom has taught me to never give up on who I am and who I wish to become no matter how hard I struggle. Evidently, ambition can either help one further along in life or cause one to get lost in their obsession with the fear of failure. All in all, it is very evident that both Victor and I share many of the same successes and problems due to ambition.
Destiny can be easily controlled by making deliberate, conscious decisions rather than just being passive bystanders in one’s own life. First of all, individuals are often bound to live in society that causes them to carelessly rush into things before thinking it over. In the novel Frankenstein, Victor is pressured to go beyond normal biology and chemistry and constructs a very destructive creature who he instantly regrets creating when he says, “I am the cause of this–I murdered her. William, Justine, Henry–they all died in my hands” (Shelley 176). This demonstrates Victor’s irrational decision that consequently alters Victor’s life for the worse as he cannot escape the beast that hunts him. This also shows that he feels responsible for the death of his brother, William, close family friend, Justine, and best friend, Henry Clerval.
Additionally, Frankenstein wishes to eradicate the life he so “thoughtlessly bestowed” (Shelley 88) upon him. Conversely, I always think through my course of action by comparing the pros and cons of my decision before acting upon it. Resolving problems in such a way allows me to understand the consequences of my actions and to make peace with these consequences. For example, during my previous years in high school, I have attended parties and asked myself numerous questions in advance. Careful consideration helped me to understand whether I should attend the party or not.
Consequently, thinking through things helps provide me with the knowledge I need to make an informed decision and doing this has ultimately lead me on the right path in life. Moreover, power is a valuable asset to certain individuals. It provides them with a sense of security as they are in control and have authority above all people.
To start with, Frankenstein abuses his knowledge and undoubtedly uses it for the wrong reasons. His power is not used to do good for society or his friends and family, as he simply uses it for his own benefit when he says, “A new species would bless me as its creator and source; many happy and excellent natures would owe their being to me” (Shelley 52). As shown in this quote, Victor creates a living being to have a unique achievement through knowledge. Nevertheless, his bad decision leads him to act irrational and abandon the creature who becomes very violent.
The killing of Victor’s loved ones contributes to the creature’s evil and power prevailing superior. In comparison, being popular is a fairly powerful thing to most teenagers in high school, however, it is not a big deal to me as I do not desire to be on top or care about being popular. I prefer to focus on my own things and enjoy life with the friends I have grown closer than ever to over the past few years. I have had so many amazing experiences with them that I will treasure for life and always remember. I want to be remembered for being exactly who I am and I think that should always be enough. Furthermore, it is crucial for our personal development to understand how other people experience the world. Vicor has little empathy as he does not feel bad for immediately rejecting the creature as soon as he is created. Frankenstein’s first feeling is disgust, since the real, breathing, moving monster is so much different from the idealized creation of Frankenstein’s dreams. Accordingly, the creature is deprived of the ability to feel love and the sense of belonging. Frankenstein states directly his thoughts on the creature’s existence when he says, “Cursed be the day, abhorred devil, in which you first saw light…Begone! Relieve me from the sight of your tetested form” (Shelley 97). Victor dismisses the creature’s feelings and because he has no empathy and does not understand the creature’s experiences and perspectives, his life takes a turn for the worse. The creature’s feelings are not considered as Victor does not show careful thought or good judgment and this results in Victor’s downfall and the lives of his family at stake.
On the other hand, I fortunately have the ability to share and understand the emotions of others. For instance, when a friend of mine lost her mother, while I may not have lost a parent, I still empathized as I knew what it might be like to lose a parent. I imagined the harsh reality of not ever being able to see, confide in, or experience the love and support of someone who has played such a major role in one’s life. So I could imagine what it might be like to lose my own parent even though I have never had the actual experience. It is important to understand that the choices in life and the feelings and desires one develops may cause one’s imminent downfall or triumph. Although both Victor and I shape our own destiny, Victor’s decision to take the wrong course of action negatively impacts him in the end.
Overall, an examination of ambition and the shaping of our destiny portrays that Frankenstein is more affected by his decisions due to his inability to recognize his over ambitiousness and the negative destiny that awaits him. In both Frankenstein and my life, Victor and I dedicate our lives to what holds meaning to us but Victor endures a tremendous downfall, brought about by his adverse judgments. It is evident that my great success in life surpasses Victor’s failure and his lack of consideration and aspirations lead him to the point of no return. Evidently, there comes a time when one has to look closely at the decisions they make and the impact those decisions will have on others.
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