Negative Self-Image: Orientation Reading in Frankincense by Mary Shelley Frankincense is one of popular science-fiction in the early 19th century. A novel written by Mary Shelley , she is started writing the story when she was eighteen, and the novel was published when she was twenty-one. The first edition was published anonymously in London in 1818.
Shelley name appears on the second edition, published in France in 1823. A novel is about Victor Frankincense who try his an unusual scientific experiment.
From his experiment, making a gigantic creature that shortly afterwards he fears and he hates. Because of the appearance of this being is scary so then Frankincense’s monster become rejected by Frankincense his self and the people. When the monster travel to find a place and people that can accept him the way he is. I read this story especially on Frankincense’s monster perspective, I saw there is subjective view on East on characters Sane and her father (Arabian). So I’ll choose to analyze it by Postcolonial approach: Orientation.
According to Tyson, as a domain within literary studies, post-colonial criticism is both a subject matter as theoretical framework. Tyson, pig 418) So that main assumptions of postcolonial theory is offering an order to analyze and understand more deeply about the oppression of human beings the same with other theories such as feminism, Marxism. The studies was marked by appearance of the book Orientation by Edward Said in 1978. Orientation by Edward Said is a canonical text of cultural studies in which he has challenged the concept of orientation or the difference between east and west. Khalid’s 2011, www. Renaissance. Com) Said argues that Orientation can be found in current Western depictions of “Arab” cultures as irrational, menacing, untrustworthy, dishonest, anti-Western and most importantly prototypical. Orientals discourse discuss and criticize that East is something more inferior than West. The West spread their ideology about East widely through media, discipline, law, technology, and so on to show that they are superior that the East. European (colonizer) teach continuously their cultural value to the colonized people that they considers colonized people have no culture.
In addition, there also in some literature is often concerned with colonization and imperialism. “Orientation rescaling texts which, while their form, content, aims, genre, and disciplining origins may be widely divergent, still work with negative, stereotyped or unexamined”. (Child’s and Williams “post-colonial theory’, pig 115) In Shelley Frankincense, although she offend the East in briefly period through character Sane and her father. I think it can be caused large influence for the reader when realize about Eastern culture is so primitive and cruel.
Sane describe as a passive Arabian women, who clearly dependent on her religion and the culture of her nation. In the “third-world”, feminist ideology is shown less to the woman because hat is subordinated by patriarchal system which is ingrained in their culture and power in their country. Can be seen the difference between sane and European community, when she was involved in much pressure from patriarchal system ( her father ) and system in her society ( Arab ). But Cane’s action show that she does not like her family tradition and religion of her time.
Political, cultural, and Arabian religion shaping her mind increasingly to pay attention to the domestic ideology of the European. When the monster tell the story about Cane’s mother is a Christian Arab who were taken as a slave by the Turkish because of her beautiful Cane’s father marry her. She teach Sane about kindness of being Christianity and forbid Sane to follow Muhammad thought. We can see in this sentence “She instructed her daughter in the tenets of her religion, and taught her to aspire to higher powers of intellect, and an independence of spirit, forbidden to the female to followers of Mohamed. Page 127) My opinion about this statement is clearly viewed that negative image or a stereotyped of Muhammad thought as primitive teaching and many oppression to the woman. Cane’s love to Felix is also a symbol that Safe already has been in love to another culture and religion. We can see in Frankincense page 127 “The prospect of marrying Christian and remaining in a country where women are allowed to take a rank in society, was enchanting her”. This is the implication of cultural colonization which is the colonizer thought about colonized has not the high uncivilized like them.
And also, Cane’s father described as a cruel Arabian man through his action that are untrustworthy, dishonest, and anti-Western. Associated with the opinion of Said ” One would find kind of procedure less objectionable as a lattice propaganda which is what it is, of course were it not accompanied by sermons on the objectivity, the fairness, the impartiality of real historian, the implication always being that Muslims and Arabs cannot be objective but that Orientations… “.
In Monster’s perspective, Cane’s father become the cause of the ruin of De Lackey’s family life. There also subjective view about Turkish man that they are bad people. (chapter 14) Begin from Felix is falling in love with Sane, and her father was caged because of his fault to the France government. Then Felix come to save ether of Safe in order to marry Sane, because Cane’s father already promise to Felix to married off Sane and Felix. But actually father of Sane does not allow that his daughter live together with Felix.
So that when Felix save his life, he make a plan to take his daughter to come back to their native country. We can see in “The Turks allowed this intimacy to take place and encouraged the hopes of the youthful lovers he loathed the idea that his daughter should be united to a Christian; if he should choose to betray him to the Italian state which they inhabited. (Frankincense, g 128) The monster, it’s self also a symbol of colonized people. Said explains “how the science of the orientation developed and how the Orientals started considering the Orientals as non-human beings. ( Khalid’s,2011. Winnipesaukee. Com ) I think when the monster is rejected from Victor and other people (colonizer) because his scary body and face, different from other (colonized), it’s implied colonizer refuse that non-western include into human beings. At first, the monster born with no education and culture, I also think that it is the gap that was created, which is the colonized ere barbarians who had no civilization, does not have system of government, religion, and customs.
Thus the monster studying language from France family, and also reading book from white people, this is the implied meaning of colonizer had high civilization. A brief conclusion, Orientals were come in 19th by Edward Said, and he also argues that Orientation is a critics to reject the long tradition about the Western is more superior than the Eastern. In Frankincense written by Mary Shelley, there some Orientals issues that appear in, the “concept of tethering” and negative elf-image of the Western way of thinking about Eastern which put Eastern as an object.