Transformation By Marry Shelley So you plant your own garden and decorate Your own soul, instead of waiting For someone to bring you flowers.. (Unknown poet) The short story Transformation by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley is a confession of a man, who experiences supernatural adventure that completely changes his personality. One of the most important themes of the story is the struggle of good and evil in a soul of a person. This theme is topical at all times. Every person has his own sins, and he is able to estimate them only if he manages to take a detached view of himself. Happiness of a person depends on weather he is able to fight against dark side of his soul or not. Love and selfless feelings help him in this fight.
To convey this theme successfully the author uses the concept of doppelganger. It helps her to develop the character of Guido (the narrator), and to divide his good and bad features. She stresses the importance of what the character sees through his own eyes, how he perceives himself and others around him. In the beginning of the story the narrator characterizes himself as an extremely selfish, elate, careless person, who is not able to control his wild emotions and passions. He looses his fathers money only because of that.
More than that he is not able to keep the most important person of his life his innocent and fragile bride Juliet. Unfortunately, at the moment the narrator does not understand all his mistakes and just continues his wasteful life. Only at the edge of his life, when he is sure that he will die in a while I shall soon die here on these lonely sands, and the limbs he covets will be mine no more.. he meets this ugly malignant dwarf and finally realizes all his mistakes. The dwarf actually forces him to find the way out, he shows him all the ugliest sides of his soul and it makes the narrator revalue the meaning of his life. His beautiful appearance and gracefulness is not really important for him any more.
He is ready to lay it down for a chance to keep his love. The theme of love is the central one in this story. For me it seems to be very complicated. I have a feeling that in the beginning of the story the narrator does not truly love Juliet. He easily leaves her in Genoa and goes traveling.
He comes back in a while, but only because of his pride, he can not accept an idea that she might belong to someone else: Another will call her his! that smile of paradise will bless another! His true feelings become clear to the reader only when he starts to fight the dwarf to save Juliet: to-morrow my bride was to pledge her vows to a fiend from hell! And I did this! my accursed pride my democratic violence and wicked self-idolatry had caused this act. The real transformation of the character begins at the same moment. Being infirm and helpless it is easier for Guido to transform into a better person. At the darkest moment of his life he sees the dream that guides him to fight for his love: What did it mean? was my dream but a mirror of the truth? was he wooing and winning my betrothed? I would on the instant back to Genoa.. He is sure that he wants to destroy the fiend, but at the same time it is hard for him to accept an idea that he has to kill his own body.
His fear disappears when he sees Juliet with this terrible man, who is nice and handsome outside, but cruel and ugly inside: Now I was no longer master of myself. I rushed forward I threw myself on him I tore him away.. Only true love made the character involve in this deadly action, and he is ready to loose his life for it. Guido wins this fight. Only at the very end of the story the narrator understands that this ugly dwarf is nothing but himself from the inside: knowing that him whom she reviled was my very self.
I think that Mary Shelley wants us to understand that a mans soul like the Moon has its two opposite sides the bright and the dark one. We all are to fight against our bad features during the life. This fight is the most successful when a mans life is unstable, when a person looses his wealth, beautiful body, and health. In such moments only the divine love helps him to become better, purer and to exhibit the best features. A man will be a winner in the struggle against draft only if he does not regret for the past, does not afraid of the future and does not blame somebody else in his misfortunes. In this case a person would accumulate love in his soul through the whole live, and this feeling would help him to become happy and to provide successful future to his children.