Can You Spot the Ignorant One?

There is a significance with storytelling from the story of Victor to the story of the Monster. Victor tells his story to Walton and then the Monster tells his story to Victor. Their motives for telling and for listening are very similar in some ways but also different in other ways. Ultimately, from the idea of storytelling the reader can see the storyteller has some knowledge to bestow on the listener.

Victor tells his story not to alter his destiny or seek forgiveness. He only wants someone to “listen to [his] history and… perceive how irrevocably it is determined” (63). He fears his end is near and his story needs to be told. He tells it not just to be heard but hopes Walton’s aspirations “may not be a serpent to sting… as [Victor’s] has been” (62). Victor sees Walton search “for knowledge and wisdom” like he once did and wants to warn Walton of where it could lead him with his own story (62). While, Walton listens “partly from curiosity and partly from a strong desire to ameliorate his fate” (62). He listens not for the benefit of himself but to help Victor be more at ease with his past.

The Monster tells his story in hopes to be heard as well, so Victor “canst listen to [him] and grant [him] thy compassion” (120). He believes he was once “to be thy Adam” but he is rather the fallen angel at that point and he repeatedly states this (119). However, he wants his creator Victor to decide whether he deserves compassion or not. While, Victor listens partly from curiosity but also felt “what the duties of a creator towards his creature were” (120). He feels obligated to make him happy by listening.

Both storytellers want to tell their story so they can be heard by someone. However, Victor hopes his story can help Walton not fall into the same path while the Monster hopes he can receive compassion from his story. Both receivers listen out of curiosity and to render the teller happy. Furthermore, Walton listens in hopes to ameliorate his friend while Victor listens in hopes to condemn the Monster after learning the truth of the death of his brother. The listeners are ignorant of their current situation and do not see that they are on the path of ill-will. The tellers on the contrary have experienced situations that they want to share. Ultimately this makes the listeners ignorant while making the storytellers knowledgeable.

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