Sunday, September 11, 2011

Open Thread on Frankenstein (Sunday blog entries go here)

For those of you who have already posted your blog entries, don't bother to post them again!

Everyone else, post your short posts on Frankenstein as comments to this thread.


  1. While I was reading the book, there was one difference between the movie and the book that was prevalent to me. In the movie, Dr. Frankenstein seemed overjoyed at the thought of creating life, but in the book he was horrified and disgusted later. One of the main passages that brought this to mind was when Henry Clerval came to visit Dr. Frankenstein and he was fretting about his creation being upstairs in his apartment. When he went upstairs and was searching for the monster and could not find it, he was relieved to be free of it. I do not recall in the book the monster committing any crime or attacking him or anyone at this point, only that he was afraid of what he had created. This seems like a distinct difference in the two stories. I also found it a little odd that Dr. Frankenstein let his creation wander around for two years without trying to find it, get rid of it, or even notify people of the being.

    - Ben Carlson

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  3. I have read many novels before this and most of them have been very eloquent in describing scenarios, but I have never encountered a novel that brought in me emotions of the characters just with a few words. The way in which 'Frankenstein’, by Mary Shelly, was written, is a model example of the most literal connections between words and images. Every word in the novel brought upon a vivid image of the scene being described and brought us into the novel. While this is common in almost every other novel, the most innovative use of words I experienced was the excessive descriptions of emotions and thoughts. As I moved through page by page, the descriptions of the characters’ emotions filled my mind so much that I felt joy when they did, and sorrow and loneliness and every other emotion that the characters in the book felt.

    There are many differences between the movie and the book, but I shall not talk about those. The topic I personally thought shone through the most was the similarity, besides the main story, in both the movie and the book. As I have discussed in my previous post regarding the movie, the similarity I noticed was the fear of the unknown. As can be seen by Victor’s reaction and the ‘monster’s’ recollections in chapters 10 and 11, Victor started blaming the creature and called it a daemon when he knew nothing about it because of the fact that the ‘monster’ was an unknown mystery. As we read Chapter 11, we can see that the ‘monster’ is in fact gentler than humans are and was no threat to anyone at first. As the ‘monster’ said so himself “I was benevolent and good; misery made me a fiend” (Shelly, 107). It is our actions against things that we do not comprehend which creates the evils we perceive. This moral was shown clearly in both the movie and the book.

    -Pratyusha Kancherla

  4. Hi everyone! My name is Estella and I'm a senior studio arts major.

    One thing that I found interesting while reading Frankenstein was how Frankenstein's monster seemed to have a greater respect for life than he himself did. Victor, being a man of science, took pride in himself and his abilities to the point of thinking he has the right to manipulate life. But the moment he succeeds he is horrified by the sight of his creation. His physical disgust, added with guilt from bringing to life the monster who caused the deaths of his siblings convinces Victor that the monster must die. Not only that, but he even considers in a moment of grief to end his own life because he was so distraught. For someone who felt like he could play God, Victor realized too late that he was too ignorant to understand the ramifications of his actions. He laments and warns Walton,"How dangerous is the acquirement of knowledge, and how much happier that man is who believes his native town to be the world, than he who aspires to become greater than his nature will allow" (pg 48, Shelley). The monster's mentality juxtaposes Victor's. Despite how he is bitter and resentful towards society and Victor for making him an outcast, he seems to have understood what Victor didn't: one who has the power to give life should not take it so lightly to end it. He entreats Victor, saying, "Life, although it may only be an accumulation of anguish, is dear to me, and I will defend it...I am thy creature, and I will be even mild and docile to my natural lord and king, if thou wilt also perform thy part, the which thou owest me" (pg 107, Shelley).

  5. Victor encountered the monster, which killed Victor’s brother William, two years later. Surprisingly, The creature in the novel was asking Victor to give him a chance to judge him besides it’s appearance and to show Victor that he also possessed pure soul as human beings by telling Victor what had happened to him in the past two years. “You, my creator, abhor me; what hope can I gather from your fellow-creatures, who owe me nothing.”(Shelley pg 107) The kindness that He felt when he saw the family members treat nicely to each other. “Especially the two younger cottagers; for several times they placed food before the old man when they reserved none for themselves. This trait of kindness moved me sensibly (Shelley pg 121).” Loneliness he had felt when he didn’t know where he belongs.
    The creature also asked a better treatment from Victor’s fellow creatures. In the movie, the monster was burned to death. Would and should Victor help the creature to make a different ending beside the death after he listened the creature’s tale?

  6. Hi my name is Kelsey Ainsworth and I am Senior. I am a psychology major with a sociology minor.

    I will say I have never truly known the story behind Frankenstein and after reading the first half of the novel I have found it to be quite complex and well thought out when it comes to the different themes shown throughout the first 12 chapters. One theme that stood out to me was this idea of knowledge being, you could say, “evil.” At a young age Victor strives for knowledge and later goes onto to a University where learns everything there is to know about modern science. At this point in his life is when we see the idea that knowledge can become “evil” due to Victor barricading himself for several years in works of creating this monster. He had been so consumed and dedicated to his work that once he had finished creating this monster he had become mentally as well as physically ill. He had the mindset of creating this new life to attain power which we know in today’s society can corrupt people if not handled correctly. Victor obviously did not handle his situation the way it should have been; he avoided society and focused all his attention on knowledge and power. Power can cause people to become controlling and insane, all which lead once again to this idea of “evil.” As the story goes on, we see Victor slowly evolving into a more crazed individual; so my questions is, can attaining to much knowledge and power cause not only a human being to become ill but can it cause society to get all wrapped up in itself and forget about the importance of maintaining a mentally and physically sound country?

  7. One of the differences that I noticed from the book and the movie is the Dr. Frankenstein's reaction to having created this new life form. The common phrase, "It's alive!" alludes to the fact the Dr. is genuinely excited about just having brought this monster into creation. In the book, the Dr. seems to be more terrified of the notion of having done so. When the monster goes missing, Dr. Frankenstein is uneasy about the potential to be harmed if the monster is in his house. The instant relief felt when the Dr. thinks he is completely rid of the monster is definitely a step away from the movie's character being overjoyed about its existence.