Archetype In Frankenstein

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“A new species would bless me as its creator and source”: Romantic and Byronic Influence in Frankenstein Leading to Nietzsche's Theory of Existentialism The word “Byronic” derives from the creator of this hero archetype, Lord Byron of 19th century England, who proposed a hero that complemented the Romanticism’s hero in many forms. Lord Byron’s archetype demonstrated psychological and sentimental complexity that the Romantic hero lacked in many respects. A Byronic hero is perceived as an extreme version of the Romantic age’s traditional heroic archetype and a hero that “must be above the common level, with greater powers, greater dignity and a greater soul”; furthermore, both the Romantic and Byronic heroes are most often defined by their rejection…show more content…
In Frankenstein, Victor acts out his role as a Byronic hero that sees no boundaries in the realm of the scientific; furthermore, Victor exemplifies a thirst for the sublime through his scientific endeavors in hopes to unlock the meaning of life. Victor suggests his conception of his role as a Byronic hero when he explains, “Life and death appeared to me ideal bounds, which I should first break through, and pour a torrent of light into our dark world” (Shelley 51). Mary Shelley further solidifies her views on individualism through Victor’s constant grasping for sublimity and through Victor’s belief that he can achieve anything as an individual separated from the Divine. In later years, the ideas of the Byronic hero archetype and man becoming an independent figure that breaks down the metaphysical order of the Divine has carried over into different philosophical schools of thought. The 19th century philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche influenced these schools of thought with his ideas that solidified existentialism and through his concepts of the “Übermensch” or “Superman.” By characterizing Frankenstein as a twisted, godly father figure and by emphasizing the aspects of individualism and the Byronic Hero, Mary Shelley authors a novel that pulls elements from the heroic archetype of the Romantic age and the Byronic hero; furthermore, the integration of Romanticism in Frankenstein builds a foundation for
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