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Mary Shelley Essay Topics & Paper Examples

The Modern Prometheus

Such is the subtitle that accompanies Mary Shelley’s classic, Frankenstein. We’ve all heard of the famous monster created by Dr. Victor Frankenstein. But, not many know why the story is subtitled, “Or, The Modern Prometheus”. In fact, many may not even make the connection to the story of the ancient Greek god who brought fire to humans, his own creation, and was eternally punished for it. However, rhetorical analysis reveals quite a few similarities between the characters, and proves Shelley’s subtitle to be accurate. Both stories deal with topics of overstepping limits, harsh consequences, and lessons learned, which contribute to the overall theme of “don’t go against the rules of nature”; thereby validating the Prometheus allusion. The topic of overstepping…

Gothic horror Frankestein

Intorduction Mary Shelley was brought up in radical surroundings. Throughout her life she was dominated by writers and poets. She had a very intellectual and opinionated family; her mother was a campaigner for women’s equal rights and her father was a political free thinker. Chapter 5 reveals that Mary Shelley has overturned the usual gothic conventions. She uses violent thunder storms to create an eerie, tense and ghostly atmosphere. The storm in chapter 5 is undramatic, it lacks violence and power which is completely different from the usual convention of a thunderstorm. Thunderstorms are usually the climax of what is happening but in this case its gives a sense of foreboding, a sense that something drastic is about to happen….

Frankenstein: Movie Vs. Book

Frankenstein has been done and redone many many times. The most recent version starring Kenneth Branagh, who also directed it, and Robert DeNiro has many differences when compared to the original story. Mary Shelley?s original story provided a story line for the imagination of the filmmaker, making the movie related to the original story but also unique in itself. For the most part, if one were to only watch the movie they would have a fairly good sense of the book. There are many minor details which are different from the in the book and movie. One of the most apparent differences between the book and the movie is the actual appearance of the monster. In the book the monster…

Celebration to Individualism in Mary Shelly’s “Frankenstein”

What comes to mind when the idea of “Romantic Literature” enters your head? Immediate imageries consisting of two lovers, a rose, or even a starlit sky may come to mind. In Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein, she disproved these imageries by creating her own scenario with grotesque images and lonely characters. Many have overlooked this novel as a romantic literature but it is actually one that contains the most elements of a romantic literature. Romantic literature emerged through a movement called Romanticism. Romanticism can be defined as a movement in art and literature that revolted against rigid social conventions. In Frankenstein, Mary Shelly stresses the importance of individualism in Romantic Literature by developing various narratives of the story to generate perspectives of…

Analyzing “Frankenstein” – Formalist Perspective

The formalist method of literary criticism is primarily focused on the text itself, rather than external topics such as history and background, the author’s biographical information, or the social contexts which surround a piece of work. In the formalist perspective, we ask ourselves, why did the author choose to write his or her work in this specific style? Why did he or she choose to include certain literary elements? “What matters most to the formalist critic is how the work comes to mean what it does–how its resources of language are deployed by the writer to convey meaning” (DiYanni 2076). A reader can employ the formalist method to decipher many meanings in Mary Shelley’s classic text Frankenstein. Shelley uses setting,…

The motive of Nature vs. Technology in Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein”

In Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein nature is purity and innocence in a vile, corrupt world. It is freedom and serenity and holds the power to overwhelm human emotion and make dismay small and insignificant in comparison to the essence of nature. Nature even has tremendous effect on Victor; it becomes his personal physician and personal therapy when he undergoes torment and stress. Technology, however, causes Victor to experience a much more negative effect. By causing sorrow and pain, Shelley communicates with the reader that humanity is advancing in technology too rapidly and at an immoral rate, and is even challenging nature’s role in the world. Through the use of contrasting technology and nature, Shelley effectively determines the essential message of technology…

The Effect of Isolation and Rejection

In the novel Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, the monster is born more or less with the mind of a baby. He craves attention, love and nurturing as all babies do. The monster was left with no one to teach him anything, and to understand the world solely on his own. After observing, and slowly figuring out how the world works, he was unable to imitate because no one accepted him, including his creator. Isolation and rejection can affect everyone differently, as in the case with the monster his character changed drastically because of it. When someone is born they need some sort of direction. As soon as the monster came into being his creator abandoned him, leaving him to figure…

Mary Shelly’s ‘Frankenstein’, and P.B. Shelly’s ‘Alastor’

The theme of suffering is best conveyed through the “solitary” aesthetic figure of the wanderer or vagrant. Romantic writers produced works revealing extremes of isolation and socialisation, creating ‘either a wild beast or a god’ and proving that although solitude can render knowledge, it can also be the cause of deep suffering. Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, is an account of the monstrous potentiality of human creative power when severed from moral and social concerns. Suffering is displayed through the characters of Victor Frankenstein and his nameless creation, the monster or “the fallen angel” . Moreover, what is necessary to further the discussion of suffering, is the cause and indeed expression of suffering endured by the central characters. Frankenstein hopes to be…

“Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” and Merry Shelley’s “Frankenstein”

For this piece of coursework I will be writing and comparing the strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, with that of Merry Shelley’s Frankenstein. I will be comparing how each monster came about and the relation between thenIntroduction:Victor Frankenstein is a scientist obsessed with trying to create life and stop death, to do this he collects parts of the body from corpses and charnel houses. When he has finally completed his human jigsaw he animates the creature using a powerful lightning storm. Shortly after the creature is animated and Frankenstein has completed his goal, he is shocked to find that his creature isn’t what he planned. Instead of creating eternal life, he created a monster which kills his…

The Frankenstein novel and Coleridge’s rime of the ancient mariner

Mary Shelley and Samuel Taylor Coleridge are two established writers of the Romantic era. Works by both writers are unique in many ways. The profound influence of Coleridge’s ” The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere” is reflected in Shelly’s “Frankenstein” in terms of narrative structure, themes and literary techniques. This essay will compare and contrast the “Frankenstein” extract and the poem, “The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere” in three aspects, namely the narrating voice, the themes and the literary techniques used. In the “Frankenstein” passage, Victor’s creation, the creature, is the narrator. Here, a framed narrative is presented by the creature to allow his side of the story to be heard as he attempts to gain self-definition and redemption of…

Who Was More of a ‘Monster’, Frankenstein or His Creation?

One approach to this question would be to say that the creature in ‘Frankentein’ was himself the only monster. However, as we soon realise, the creature is benevolent at heart and only becomes monstrous due to the unjust way in which society treats him. The bleak, miserable world which Shelley portrays, full of hypocrisy, oppression and prejudice gains exposure through the depiction of the monsters ‘fall from grace’. It is through the monsters suffering that he becomes truly monstrous. Shelley is suggesting that the creature’s misdeeds are caused by the enormity of his suffering; at heart, he is essentially good. And, more importantly, essentially human. If he is monstrous, no one but Frankenstein is to blame. When the outraged creature…

Victor Frankenstein and Robert Walton there similarities

The desire to make history to discover what remains undiscovered, or to know what remains unknown is an everlasting human goal. Although many have failed to realize this dream, a very few have been passionately successful in its pursuit. The immortality power that these select few have, of course, only provided to encourage those who come after. Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley’s Frankenstein is a literary reflection upon this intensely human desire here illustrated by the title character’s quest for personal glory by means of scientific discovery. Moreover, both Victor Frankenstein and the Arctic explorer Robert Walton, whose letters open the novel, hold a greedy thirst for privileged knowledge of those things that are unknown to the common person. Nevertheless, Shelley presents…

Elizabeth, the Monster and Patriarchy

In Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, some blatant parallels are made between Dr. Frankenstein’s adopted sister, Elizabeth, and the monster he created. Both of these innocent creatures, together represent all of mankind in their similarities and differences, Elizabeth being the picture of womanhood and goodness, the monster representing manhood and evil. Both Elizabeth and the monster belong to and structure their lives in terms of Dr. Frankenstein, leading to overall destruction and, ultimately demonstrating the dangerous properties of patriarchy, which Dr. Frankenstein embodies. Dr. Frankenstein begins his narrative, most logically, in telling the story of his childhood. Dr. Victor Frankenstein’s mother was a loving, benevolent woman, moved by the plight of the impoverished and forever doing all in her power to give…

An Analysis of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley was born in London in 1797 to radical philosopher, William Godwin, and Mary Wollstonecraft, author of A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. Wollstonecraft died 11 days after giving birth, and young Mary was educated in the intellectual circles of her father’s contemporaries. In 1814, at the age of seventeen, Mary met and fell in love with poet, Percy Bysshe Shelley. She ran away with him to France and they were married in 1816 after Shelley’s wife committed suicide. Percy Shelley was a prominent poet of the Romantic Movement along with Samuel Taylor Coleridge, William Wordsworth, and Shelley’s friend, Lord Byron. As his wife and companion, Mary Shelley was exposed to the same influences as her husband,…

Criticism on the Novel

Nature setting are explicit Page 30: “When I was about fifteen years old we had retired to our house near Belrive, when we witnessed a most violent and terrible thunderstorm. It advanced from behind the mountains of Jura, and the thunder burst at once with frightful loudness from various quarters of the heavens. I remained with curiosity and delight. As I stood at the door, on a beautiful oak which stood about twenty yards from our house; and so soon as the dazzling light vanished, the oak had disappeared, and nothing remained but a blasted stump. […] It was not splintered from the shock, but entirely reduced to thin ribbons of wood.” Foreshadowing?: power of electricity sparks his attention, if…

Destiny and Frankenstein

“Destiny was too potent, and her immutable laws had decreed my utter and terrible destruction.” Victor Frankenstein says this right before telling Walton his story.Destiny played an important role in the book Frankenstein. Victor sees it as the force that caused his downfall. He blames most of what has happened on destiny. At first it was his destiny to build the monster, afterwards he says it is his destiny to destroy it. Victor feltas if some force was making him experiment, that some force was making him make the monster and he had no control over it. This is why when he was building the monster he shut him self off from everything else and committed himself to his experiment….

Influence of “family” in Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein”

Family in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein demonstrates a myriad of roles, influencing Victor Frankenstein and his creation. Victor’s childhood establishes a connection between the reader and Victor, building his character. The monster is influenced by the various episodes with the family of cottagers The recounting of Victor’s childhood coalesce the reader to Victor, conveying his affection for his family. “No human being could have passed a happier childhood than myself…it was the secrets if heaven and earth that I desired to learn”(23). This close rapport rationalizes his intense abhorrence for the monster. There is a reciprocated need for support and care between Victor and his family. At the most abject times, nothing “could have given [him] greater pleasure than the arrival…

Frankenstein: The Danger of Knowledge

“It was on a dreary night of November, that I beheld the accomplishment of my toils. With an anxiety that almost amounted to agony, I collected the instruments of life around me, that I might infuse a spark of being in to the lifeleless thing that lay at my feet. It was already one in the morning; the rain pattered dismally against the panes, and my candle was nearly burnt out, when, by the glimmer of the half-extinguished light, I saw the dull yellow eye of the creature open; it breathed hard, and a convulsive motion agitated its limbs” (Shelley, 34). Thus begins the horror in Mary Shelley’s well-known gothic, romantic fiction, Frankenstein. This literary work, published in 1818, tells…

Frankenstein as Anti-Hero Character

SUCI HANIFAH LITERARY CRITICISM II EDRIA SANDIKA/MARLIZA YENI 8 MAY 2013 Frankenstein as Anti Hero Character A women who wrote “Frankenstein” named, Mary Shelley, she was born August 30, 1797, in London, England. Mary Shelley came from a rich literary heritage. She was the daughter of William Godwin, a political theorist, novelist, and publisher. Her ideas to write Frankenstein cameon summer of 1816, Mary and his brother Percy visited the poet Lord Byron at his villa beside Lake Geneva in Switzerland. Stormy weather finally forced them going indoors, while the other guests read a volume of ghost stories. So there, Mary’s story became Frankenstein when she was only 19 years old.Frankenstein was published in 1818, when Mary was 21, and…