Do You Even Clone, Bro?

On the same topic is the prior blog, bioethics that is, there are even further issues that arise when discussing cloning human beings. What makes humans set apart from animals is that we are God breathed, so we have a soul. When it comes to cloning or creating life from where there wasn’t life, do these creations have a soul? Will they have a conscience, or will they just act like they do and really be just like an animal? It is very likely in the case of this actually occurring that we will not be able to tell if the creation has a soul, because scientists don’t even know where the soul/conscience is or how to measure it.

This brings to light the clear ethical issue that Victor Frankenstein ignored: to clone or create a new human apart from birth would present a possibility of creating life without a soul. Humans should not pursue this as it is playing god, and it is evil and wicked. Something similar is actually in scripture, where the people tried to build a tower, the Tower of Babel, up to heaven to be like God and were punished. This applies less strictly to genetic engineering, as it is still mostly natural creation of humans, but with no definite grasp on what makes humans conscience it is all risky. 

Word Count: 226

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Bioethics

Although Frankenstein is a fictional novel, there are actually some real world applications to the ideas discussed in the book. One such idea is bioethics. Thanks to recent scientific discoveries, it is now becoming more and more possible to change DNA. This can look like changing how a baby will look or curing diseases. The term bioethics comes into play when considering what is ethical. Is it okay to use science to harvest fetuses? Is it okay to choose how a baby will be? Frankenstein did not even consider these questions when he decidedly chose to create Mo. Another danger when it comes to pursuing knowledge pertaining to science like this is how more and more scientists try to play God. They are trying to chose how babies should be, despite what God planned. They are ending brand new lives for research. Whatever it is, more and more people are trying to be the one in charge of everything, even biology.

There are also some good things that can come from technology like CRISPR though, like curing cancer or genetic diseases. It is true that this is the motivation behind some scientists in their bioengineering, so it is unfair to say all in this field are unethical. What needs to be done with technology like this though is rules need to be established. Just like nukes, mankind needs to be careful with what they create if it’s too powerful, so maybe rules against making perfect humans should be established. Despite this, unlike Victor, before playing with biology ethics must be considered.

Word Count: 261

Sublime

There is no denying the fact the nature is beautiful. As recognized by Frankenstein, there are certain parts of the nature of things and the earth that are both awesome and also terrifying. Younger Victor watches a tree explode under the great force of electricity, specifically though lightning. This both amazes him and also frightens him, but most importantly it sparks his interest in the sublimeness of nature. Throughout his life, he often returns to beautiful places when he wants to get his mind off things or even work devoutly in the scenery of another country. When looking at the earth, he is probably reminded of the awe-inspiring feeling of having absolutely no control over something natural.

Still pertaining to the subject of sublime nature, the book often uses ice as a motif. In the beginning, Walton gets stuck in ice and we meet almost dead Frankenstein. At the end of the book, it returns to this scene to show the death of Victor and the conclusion of the book. The clear symbolism behind this can be taken many ways, but is most easily read to represent the cold and stuck heart of Victor himself. Just as the ship gets stuck in ice, his heart gets stuck on the creation of life, which again points back to his love and appreciation for sublime experiences with nature. Because of this, his life becomes ruined and his heart turns cold or evil, again symbolized through the physical ice he dies on. It is fitting that Frankenstein ends in this way to show that the story is constant, as Victor’s experience is truly dark and cold.

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Ambition

One of the more interesting things found in Frankenstein is the parallel desires of Frankenstein and his monster. This is mainly seen through their obsessive ambitions. What the both of them are most obsessed with, although in different ways, is each other. Victor wants to create life and pursues this goal with his whole being. When he does create Mo, he forgets about him for a while (more or less) but when the monster returns and starts killing his loved ones his is obsessed with finding this monster. His greatest desire is to create life, and what that life is. For Mo, ever since he was outcasted by Victor he has the desire to hurt Frankenstein and all his loved ones. His greatest desire is to make his creator’s life miserable.

Both of these characters are willing to give everything to the cause of their obsession, and as seen through the book, everything is quite literal. Victor dies after pursuing Mo in a chase. He sacrifices his sleep, time, sanity, and in the end his whole life. Mo sacrifices his humanity, as he brutally murders to get back at Victor, including the murder of his “father’s” new bride. At the end of the novel, after Frankenstein dies, he admits he has nothing left to do in life, so he goes to kill himself. As sad as it is, the two of them truly devoted their lives to their obsession.

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Ethical Dilemma

In Mary Shelley’s novel, Mo asks Frankenstein to make him a mate. The monster gives good reasons for him to make her, saying that he has the obligation as his creator to help make his life not miserable. Also, Mo explains that he and his mate would leave and never interact with humans again. This, along with the fact that Mo could easily kill Victor, is good motivation and reason for him to create the mate. On the contrary, it is wrong to make a creature of free will and then force it to be something that maybe it doesn’t want to be.

Readers of Frankenstein know that the monster is not happy how he was made, and he is also treated horribly. I highly doubt this is how Victor intended things to turn out, but instead he probably didn’t anticipate the full extent of the situation. The same applies for creating another life like Mo. What if the monster doesn’t want to be isolated with Mo for forever? Also, a very valid point of the possibility of children arises. Despite how much the reader is supposed to feel empathy for Mo, it is also obvious that this whole creation was a big mistake. To let more of these creatures to be created is like playing god, and is definitely not okay. With all these facts in mind, Victor should not create a mate for Frankenstein because he should not have created a monster in the first place, and even though he did not give his monster a good life that doesn’t give justification for doing it again.

Word Count: 268

Nature vs. Nurture

Frankenstein’s monster, Mo, learns about the world in which he was created into through stalking a family he encounters. He watches the DeLacey family live together, and most importantly communicate, which Mo analyzes to start learning how to speak too. Later, some foreign person moves to the village and he learns from afar by those lessons given to the foreigner. These oral lessons along with reading books help develop Frankenstein’s creature into a speaking “sophisticated” being. Watching these people interact helps teach Mo how he should act, so the family definitely played a crucial role in developing the monster’s good side, even if they ended up rejecting him.

After hoping to be accepted by this family and then being rejected and abandoned, Mo becomes furious towards mankind and specifically towards Victor. If the people he encountered would have not immediately rejected Mo because of his appearance then he likely would not have gone on his killing rampage. After feeling a connection with the people he watched in silence for so long, and then being so quickly rejected, Mo understandably is furious at how all humans will not give him a chance. Of course, it is mostly Victor’s fault for rejecting him initially. I feel much sadness and sympathy for the monster because he didn’t ask to be made how he was. Mo from the start is never given a chance to explain himself and is not offered even human rights, even though he is a man of a sort.

This furious rampage of murder that the monster goes on after his abandonment is a result of his nurture or the experiences he has. There is nothing that indicates he was born with an evil heart, especially because he is not human so would not have a sin nature probably. Because of this, it is logical to assume that what Mo becomes is solely because of how he is treated by other people he encounters.

Word Count: 323

Role of Parents

An important issue arises when considering Victor Frankenstein’s creation of an artificial life, and that is the role he has towards this creature. His obligation to his monster is much like that of an adoptive father or mother. He brought the monster into this world, so he has an obligation to his creation to not abandon it. This is most easily comparable to an adoptive parent. They should not bring a child into their family and then abandon them. Victor has a responsibility one step further, because he actually brought the monster into this world.

The reason Frankenstein flees from his creation is because it is hideous, and he associates that with terror and horror. He runs from the monster as if he forgets that he brought it into his world. In this sense, he has an obligation to not isolate this “child” of his just because it is deformed. Victor Frankenstein should at least stay with his monster and teach it how to behave and nurture it. In reality, often in other countries children are left abandoned because they are deformed and a nuisance. This is clearly inhumane, and even though Victor’s situation is artificially created life, it is still wrong to abandon something because it is ugly.

Frankenstein’s monster should have no innate bad in him. Nothing about the creation process would indicate that something dark and evil would be built into the being’s system. As he is not a normally born human, we can’t assume that he is born with a sin nature. What he is going to become is dependent on the experiences that he has with other people, including the isolation and rejection given to him by his own creator, Victor. So, Frankenstein should respond not in horror to his creation with the idea in mind that it will become how it is treated. He should love and nurture it, despite how ugly it is.

Word Count: 320