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At the time of its writing and publication Mary Shelleys Frankenstein was part of a world still in shock at the implications of Charles Darwins dangerous theories of Natural Selection and evolutionary biology known collectively as Darwinism Expectedly Frankenstein is filled with allusions to Darwinism both in a biological and natural context as well as in reference to the introspective idea of man still carrying a bestial nature as part of himself from his evolutionary past Shelley also utilizes the theme of Darwinism in the more abstract context of the emotional and adaptive growth of characters in response to the struggle for life Darwin 72 In Frankenstein Victor Frankensteins thirst for advancement both intellectually and socially and his desire to improve upon the species of man by adapting a new species to bless him as its creator and source reveal allusions to Darwinism Shelley 32 A new more advanced and adaptable species surviving and even thriving more fully over a more primitive and diminutive organism plays as a basic role in the concept of Darwins Natural Selection Victors wish to create this new superhuman race as greater than his own ironically reveals the oft inability of man to foresee the possible consequences of his actions With the emergence of an all around greater species had victor not destroyed the fiends Shelley 98 future mate humanity would have had a new threat in the survival of the fittest with mankind as a severe biological disadvantage Darwin 72 This fear of the fragility of human life in a savage existence only multiplied in Shelleys early nineteenth century upon the reception of Darwinism and she makes another subtle allusion to Darwins Origin of Species with the mention of the savage beasts of South America as a potential escape for the savage Monster Shelley 99 Darwin 76 Mankind has always tried to explore the darker bestial nature of humanity in relation to the rest of the creatures in the
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