Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley – 4/5
Genre: Classic Science Fiction/Gothic
Longman Cultural Second Edition
Frankenstein has taught me not to judge a book by all its adaptations and pop culture. I never had any interest in this novel because I really didn’t want to read about a mad scientist who made a creepy green monster. However, I’m glad to report that the book is much more than that.
Pop culture has reduced Frankenstein’s creature to a zombie version of the hulk; a creature who is dumb and murderous. True, the creature goes on a murder spree, but I think it’s important to understand how he got to that point. The creature is far from a zombie, but actually very intelligent and quiet possibly a vegan.
In my opinion, Victor Frankenstein is not a mad scientist, but an artist. He wanted to create life and create something beautiful, and science was a means to that end. Of course what he intended was not what was produced.
Depending in how you read this book, I don’t think the creature is the only antagonist. Victor fills this role as well.
Obviously, Frankenstein covers themes like physiognomy and nature vs nurture, but the story goes further. Because the novel references “Paradise Lost” by John Milton, it also has biblical references.
There are many topics to be discussed in Frankenstein:
- Violence (implied and the physical act)
- The search for glory
- Representation of women
- Complexities of relationships
Seriously the list continues. I could go on, but I don’t want to spoil the book for you. I’m just happy that the book I read, it not what’s portrayed in the media.