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The novel Frankenstein is as relevant and terrifying today as it was when first published in 1818

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The novel Frankenstein is as relevant and terrifying today as it was when first published in 1818 Mary Shelley was born on august 30th, 1797, in London. Her parents, William Godwin and Mary Wollstonecraft were two very influential people of this era. Her mother was a renowned woman's rights activist and her father was a distinguished philosopher and historian. Due to her father's fame, many prominent writers, philosophers and poets visited their house, with Shelley joining in conversation, possibly influencing her. At the age of sixteen Shelley runs away to live with the poet Percy Shelley, disowning her parents in the process. Whilst with Percy, they went to stay with the poet Bryon at his house in Switzerland, where a challenge was set, who could write the scariest story. Shelley was inspired by nightmares of her dead half-sister coming back to life, these could have also included Percy's late wife. Mary married Percy after his wife died, leaving two children, but the first died a few weeks later. Percy later drowned when Mary was twenty-four, leaving her as a single mother. Due to all the tragedies in her life, Shelley almost committed suicide, and this is reflected in the book, giving a tragic and depressing side to the novel. The books subtitle was that of a famous Greek myth about a God called Prometheus, who gave the secret of fire to humans. ...read more.


Using contrasts in this way Mary Shelly helps the reader to create a more detailed picture of the creature in their minds. Victor's creation is hideous and a long way from the scientific phenomena he had wanted, 'now that I had finished, the beauty of the dream vanished, and breathless horror and disgust filled my heart.' The build up of atmosphere can make the climax of horror even more spine chilling and petrifying. With the build up of atmosphere, the reader feels involved when the action reaches a pinnacle. In Frankenstein whenever a loved one is lost or there is an encounter with the monster, the weather is always dark and stormy. "The darkness and storm increased every minute and the thunder burst with a terrific crash over my head". This event takes place when Victor is in Geneva, and the description of the pending weather conditions are told to the reader before there is any mention of the monster. This leads the reader to a conclusion that something horrific is imminent, building up tension and involving the reader's imagination to predict what is going to happen next. There are many reasons why Mary Shelley's Frankenstein was so riveting to read when first published back in 1818. One of the main reasons why the early audience in 1818 found it so spellbinding was that many scientists of the time were trying to bring the dead back to life, with a new-found invention, electricity. ...read more.


The main message of the book is a warning of what would happen if someone tried to use God's powers in an inappropriate way. It is also a warning to scientists and inventors of new technology today and back in the nineteenth century. The novel shows them what could happen if they start giving life, to what shouldn't be given life, or if they don't fully understand the consequences or side effects. Shelley also gives out the message that death is the end and we should accept that and not try to bring people back to life, just for the selfishness of others. Also the book reveals smaller messages such as don't judge people by their appearance and we should try and learn to accept misfits. This last message is especially relevant in today's modern society. People are constantly being judged by their outward appearance, whether it is their sex, race or if they have disabilities. I found this novel very depressing, as there was constant death and discrimination. Victor starts off with good intentions, but all backfires when his toils have been revealed. I also feel that you relate to Victor's loneliness, especially when he has worked for years on this single experiment, and it all goes tragically wrong. Although Frankenstein's monster was the person killing all these innocent people, I feel that he was the victim. This is because he is classed as a misfit of society, he can't relate to anyone and is being constantly discriminated against. James King 4mts ...read more.

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