KNOWLEDGE

Josh Millbauer

Brief summary

In Frankenstein, we learn that from the creation of the creature until the end, he has a great desire to learn about human ways and language and tries to understand why things are the way they are.

The Creatures Desire for Knowledge.

My first quote that i will share is one that starts at the very beginning of the creatures life."And what was I? Of my creation and creator I was absolutely ignorant, but I knew that I possessed no money, no friends, no kind of property" (Page 100). This is the first thing from the creature that shows us knowledge. He knows that without being able to speak, or having no money or personal belongings, that he will not be able to survive in a human environment.
"Another circumstance strengthened and confirmed these feelings. Soon after my arrival in the hovel I discovered some papers in the pocket of the dress which I had taken from your laboratory. At first I had neglected them, but now that I was able to decipher the characters in which they were written, I began to study them with diligence. It was your journal of the four months that preceded my creation" (Page 110). This quote is important because the creature can read now, and is able to understand that Victor greatly regrets his creation. This is coming close to the point in the story where the creature begins to hate the human race.
"My days were spent in close attention, that I might more speedily master the language; and I may boast that I improved more rapidly than the Arabian, who understood very little and conversed in broken accents, whilst I comprehended and could imitate almost every word that was spoken" (Page 99). This is important to the story because the creature has not yet gone bad at this point, and is still trying to learn the ways of the humans so that he can talk to the family. He just wants to be able to speak with them and have a home and something he can call his family. At this point, he is still learning new things everyday.
"By degrees I made a discovery of still greater moment. I found that these people possessed a method of communicating their experience and feelings to one another by articulate sounds. I perceived that the words they spoke sometimes produced pleasure or pain, smiles or sadness, in the minds and countenances of the hearers. This was indeed a godlike science, and I ardently desired to become acquainted with it" (Page92). This is important to the story because it shows the creatures beginning in trying to understand communication.
"By great application, however, and after having remained during the space of several revolutions of the moon in my hovel, I discovered the names that were given to some of the most familiar objects of discourse; I learned and applied the words, 'fire,' 'milk,' 'bread,' and 'wood.' I learned also the names of the cottagers themselves. The youth and his companion had each of them several names, but the old man had only one, which was 'father.' The girl was called 'sister' or 'Agatha,' and the youth 'Felix,' 'brother,' or 'son.' I cannot describe the delight I felt when I learned the ideas appropriated to each of these sounds and was able to pronounce them. I distinguished several other words without being able as yet to understand or apply them, such as 'good,' 'dearest,' 'unhappy" (Page 92). This quote is important because the creature is learning how to use his resources and brain to learn how to speak which will become a huge part of the story.
"One man's life or death were but a small price to pay for the acquirement of the knowledge which I sought, for the dominion I should acquire and transmit over the elemental foes of our race" (page 12). This is in my opinion the most important quote because though it is a great pursuit of knowledge, he doesn't know how to handle the creature in the future and is ultimately responsible for the death of everyone that is close to him.