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Identity Crisis of

2020-11-12 05:00:13 速读·中旬 2020年8期

白宇

Abstract : Trying to make cenain of three major questions about existence in the light of three phases of Existentialism , this paper aimsat revealing the identity crisis of the two protagonists as well as existential influences on individual existence.

Keyword s : three phases of Existentialism , identity crisis , individual existence1 Introduction

In mainland China, related researches had been done little yearsago. What had been advocated in Frankenstein were regarded anti-sci -entific and retrogressive. Naturally, this novel reminded a jade in therough in literary field. While the existing studies focus ruainly on MaryShelly ' s interpretation and critique on Romanticism.the twisted Procre -ation Viewpoint , Feminism as well as Ecological Ethics. In recent years .with more widely acception of multicultural literature . some scholars be -gin to pay more attention to Mary Shelly and her Frankenstein.

This paper strikes a unique line of combining Existentialism and thepursuit identity for their owning something in common. A great number ofresearches centers upon the impacts on human society that brought withthe development of science and technology. As far as I am concerned,Mary expressed far more than that. She thought and created Frankensteinwith the pursuit of identity. According to this point, l set the author' sidentity crisis as a foreshadowing of my study on her two protagonists. Mypaper conducts from the search of self-identity with the assistance ofExistentialism. For Existentialism concerns the development of individ -ual. Thus . a systematic structure of one ' s life of existing appears.

2 the Pursuit for Identity and Identity Crisis of the Two " Frankensteins"

The pursuit for identity of the scientist Victor and his creator aredivided into three phases in this paper. Fowles once claimed that. Exis -tentialism is not a hidebound philosophy telling people what to do. It is atool. a practical philosophy that helps people with their survivals in par -ticular situation. Therefore. Existentialism is a key to the understandingof identity crisis. This article analyzes the elements of Existentialismfrom various aspects.

In the first phase of creating. that is , where do l come from? "lonelyand mysterious individual" "free choices " . such descriptions are used toexplain the monster' s creation. Kierkegaard and Nietzsche took the roleof making free choices , particularly fundamental values and heliefs , andhow such choices change the nature and identity of the chooser intoconsideration. "Cod and Nothingness "existence precedes essence"(Shelley . 1982) account for Victor ' s failure in pursuing for identity as aCreator( Cod).

While in the second phase of integrating. " Who am I" in short,"lived relations" "gaze and be gazed" "free choice" present as key waysin pursuing for identity as human being of the monster. While this expe -rience. in its basic phenomenological sense . constitutes the world as ob -jective. and oneself as objectively existing subjectivity (one experiencesoneself as seen in the Other' s Look in precisely the same way that oneexperiences the Other as seen by him , as subjectivity) . in Existentialism ,it also acts as a kind of limitation of one ' s freedom. As for Victor."alienation and absurdity" "self-destruction by hahits " ( Shelley. 1982 )are existential interpretations of his identity crisis as a monster.

In the final phase, "Where aru I going" "individual and the other""the other is the hell" "suicide" and "life is a tragedy" indicate thefailure of pursuit for identity of the two Frankensteins. What' s more."individual existence and freedom " and "authenticity" (Shelley. 1982)provide a new entry point for warning significance to modern society(identity crisis of modern humans). The therue of authentic existence iscommon to many existentialist thinkers. It is often taken to mean that onehas to "find oneself" and then live in accordance with this self.

3 Conclusion

"Who am I? Where do I come from? Where am l going?" are threefundamental and insightful questions raised by both Existentialism andIdentity. It doubts whether there is anybody could offer a precise answerfor himself. Seem quite easy. those three questions confused their wholelife of many existentialists and those who studies on identity. Only in theprocess of existing as well as pursuing self-identity , can one make sense.

Pdferences

[1]Earnshaw, Steven. Existentialism: A Guide for thePerplexed. Shanghai: Shanghai Foreign Language EducationPress. 2009.

[2]Shelley,Mary. Frankenstein. New York:Bantam Books.1982.

[3]Marcus, Steven. Frankenstein: Myths of Scientificand Medical Knowledge and Stories of Human Relations. TheSouthern Review. 2002. 38. 1.

[4]Pollin,Burton R. Philosophical and Literary Sourc -es of Frankenstein. Comparative Literature. 1965.