Specialisation: Literature

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is a timeless classic that has had a lasting influence on many aspects of popular culture and science. Written in 1818, Shelley’s novel reflected the cultural movements and scientific discoveries of the time. Since its publication, Frankenstein has been a source of inspiration for many in film, theatre, evolution of science and literature. The novel’s themes of ambition, morality, and the consequences of technological progress are still relevant today and can be seen in many aspects of popular culture and scientific progress.

First, Frankenstein has been pervasive in popular culture, appearing in films, television shows, and Halloween decorations. For example, the 1931 Universal Pictures movie starring Boris Karloff is widely considered the definitive adaptation of the novel. This movie sets the standard for portraying the creature with a flat head, bolts in the neck, and a menacing demeanor (Laemmle Jr). During the 1930s, Hollywood created more than fifty full-length motion pictures based on Mary Shelley’s novel, ranging from the classic 1931 Universal Pictures film where Boris Karloff played the Monster to the more contemporary 2019 film “Victor Frankenstein.” Frankenstein movies and television specials that air every October have made The Monster’s appearance in cinema a staple of the Halloween season. Children continue to dress as recognizable monsters for Halloween, which has also evolved into classic Halloween costumes. Frankenstein’s influence on pop culture is further demonstrated by the Monster’s appearance in various products, including toys, games, comics, and graphic novels. Moreover, characters from the book, such as Dr. Victor Frankenstein and his Monster, can be seen in the 2014 television series Penny Dreadful (Loga and Mendes). The Monster, the doctor, and society’s viewpoints have all been incorporated into the book’s cinematic adaptation. The book’s themes, such as prejudice and loneliness, are explored differently in each rendition. The stories are preserved in popular culture due to these television and film productions, demonstrating how the themes and characters are still relevant today.

The evolution of science has been influenced by Frankenstein as well. In the story, Victor Frankenstein’s desire to give the creature life stands in for the generation’s technological advancements (Shelley). The novel’s influence on science is evident in medical science, specifically in advancing cloning and genealogy. Since the novel’s release more than 200 years ago, genetics has significantly increased, with the cloning of animals in the late twentieth century being one of the most significant achievements. Medical professionals use cloning and genetic engineering to treat various illnesses and ailments. The development of effective organ transplants and operations is another example of how the book has influenced medical research. Dr. Frankenstein revived the Monster in Shelley’s novel using electricity, a feat that is currently feasible in the area of medicine. In addition to symbolizing Victor Frankenstein’s desire to create new life, Dolly’s cloning was a significant scientific accomplishment. The moral ramifications of playing God and the limitations of human ambition were two other recent topics of discussion raised by Dolly’s cloning (Greely). Today’s surgeons employ electricity to restore organ function and resuscitate patients who have experienced cardiac arrest.

Finally, Frankenstein has also had a significant impact on literature. Numerous authors, including H.G. Wells’ contemporary science fiction novel The Island of Dr. Moreau, have drawn inspiration from the book for their works (Breedlove). The famous horror novel Dracula by Bram Stoker is one of many works that have drawn influence from Shelley’s novel. Several of the same literary devices Shelley used, such as gothic themes, horror, and a love of the unknown, were also used by Stoker. Being a reanimated corpse, Dracula resembles Frankenstein’s Monster in the novel (Crisan and Senf). Stoker produced a book that has stood the test of time employing these similar methods. The topics Frankenstein discusses are still relevant today. For instance, Shelley’s novel examines the risks of playing God and creating life. As scientists progress in genetics and cloning, this is highly significant. This raises ethical concerns about playing God and generating life. Shelley made a timeless work still disputed today by tackling these themes in her novel. By exploring these themes in her book, Shelley created a position that is still relevant today and has had a lasting impact on popular culture.

In conclusion, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is still relevant today since it significantly impacts popular culture and science. The novel’s themes of ambition, morality, and the effects of scientific development are still important today, with applications ranging from its use in movies and Halloween decorations to its impact on cloning, genealogy, and operations. These can be observed in modern popular culture and scientific advancement facets.

Works Cited

Breedlove, Byron. “Revisiting the Island of Doctor Moreau.” Emerging Infectious Diseases Journal, 2021, https://doi.org/10.3201%2Feid2710.AC2710.

Crisan, Marius-Mircea, and Carol Senf. “Bram Stoker’s Dracula: The Transformation of Tradition.” The Palgrave Handbook of Steam Age Gothic, 2021, pp. 647–667. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-40866-4_35.

Greely, Henry T. “Frankenstein and Modern Bioscience: Which Story Should We Heed?” Huntington Library Quarterly, vol. 83, no. 4, 2020, pp. 799–821. https://doi.org/10.1353/hlq.2020.0028.

Laemmle Jr, Carl, director. Frankenstein | “It’s Alive!”YouTube, Universal Pictures, 25 Oct. 2020, https://youtu.be/wL9E2QKP2us. Accessed 10 Mar. 2023.

Loga, Johnn and Sam Mendes, directors. Penny Dreadful Season 1 | Official Trailer | Eva Green & Josh Hartnett SHOWTIME SeriesYouTube, Penny Dreadful, 14 Feb. 2014, https://youtu.be/YFXHfEqMcis. Accessed 10 Mar. 2023.

Shelley, Mary. “Frankenstein or, The Modern Prometheus.” ManyBooks, Project Gutenberg, 10 Dec. 2012, https://manybooks.net/book/165040/read#epubcfi(/6/2[item7]!/4/3:12).

The Novel Dracula

Bram Stoker employs symbols in his novel Dracula to help the reader grasp some of the concepts. Animals and Christian motifs are some of the most popular symbols he employs. The first quotation uses animals as a metaphor for evil, with Van Helsing claiming that the vampire that lived among them could control rats, owls, bats, moths, foxes, and wolves, as well as grow larger or smaller and occasionally vanish and go unnoticed. Count Dracula uses animals, especially wild creatures, to help him fulfill his wicked plans and satisfy his needs.

These creatures represent unrestrained wants that are satisfied without disrupting morality. The protagonists are initially unconcerned by the bats. Still, as Lucy’s sleep problems worsen, they start to notice that there appears to be a giant bat at her pane; a bat appears to be able to calm Renfield when he is aggravated. Quincey Morris has prior knowledge of a horse whose blood was siphoned instantly by a vampire bat. It takes them all some time to realize that Dracula has the power to transform into a bat. They then come to understand that the bat can listen in.

Bats represent the evil that enters the psyche covertly at night and does significant harm. The participants are aware that wolves should be feared, unlike bats. In this tale, the wolves savagely carry out Dracula’s sinister plans to eliminate the parents of his captives so that he won’t have to worry about them getting in the way (2022). Jonathan is detained within the castle as well. Wolves symbolize a more overt kind of evil, making the narrative characters feel their greater acute terror of them. Renfield, a prisoner at the asylum, starts by consuming flies before progressing gradually to larger creatures. Renfield wants to kill flies, spiders, birds, and cats because they provide him with food. They serve as a metaphor for how sin may fester inside an individual. Small reasons at first, but sin feeds on itself and grows ravenous. The sinner is left with an unquenchable desire.

The author Bram Stoker’s intent to convey a strong feeling of reality becomes increasingly clear as the novel Dracula progresses. He accomplishes this by fusing realism with the book’s obvious fiction to frighten and astound everyone who opens its pages. By doing this, he thoughtfully engages the reader, who may conclude that the events in the tale happened. Stoker genuinely knows what happens during the story by using complex language and detailed descriptions. The reader has the impression that they are experiencing the scene as the characters. The conflict between Good and Evil is clearly understood as the book’s only failure.

Bram Stoker set out to write Dracula with that goal in mind. The pursuit of Dracula is motivated by their desire to defeat such a dreadful entity who terrorizes everyone he infects, despite the difficulty of their task. They should either kill or capture this creature in his den or sterilize the ground in a way that prevents him from looking for protection there again. Getting rid of a bad person is startlingly practical since we all want to get rid of those who cause us pain and unhappiness. Maintaining relationships with those who, like Count Dracula, derive satisfaction from the utter desperation of others is not necessary for life.

Additionally, sexually complex connotations of symbolism are used to observe reality. Lucy’s blood transfusions are perceived as being quite sexual, much like Dracula’s vampire activities. Despite being engaged to Arthur, a caring man, Lucy’s transfusion of male blood shows how much she enjoys being unfaithful.

Stoker alters the atmosphere with the help of the environment, particularly the impact of gloom. The Carpathians tale by Harker ends with a thundering setting that captures the gothic drama’s tension and constrained expectation (2019). Stoker’s portrayal of the scene abruptly changes, drastically altering the tone. Previously, the scene of the journey through the Carpathians was lovely and exotic, but when night falls, the reader is introduced to a frightening strain of the strange. The figures of the night started to crawl about us, writes Harker.

This demonstrates the unusual transition that happens as the day draws to a close. Harker’s mounting fear of the vast heaps of drabness and the bestrewed trees, which are described as peculiarly odd, is made clear to the reader by Stoker (2018). The dusk of the night is advancing and seems to melt into one grey mistiness of darkness in the meantime. Stoker creates brutality that appears to immerse the valley the carriage is going in, in a grey and grim dark. He does this by repeatedly using the fundamental concepts of the countryside at dusk. The surroundings have changed into a depressing backdrop with a feeling of imminent doom. The ghost-like clouds, followed by the dark, rumbling clouds, glide ceaselessly over the valleys, adding to the sense of confinement as they create a roof to enclose the already cramped environment.

Good versus evil is one of Dracula’s central themes. Dracula is a representation of pure evil. In addition to being a monster in and of himself, he also forces other people to become monsters. In the book, Dracula stands in for all that is bad. In addition to being wicked in and of himself, he also infects certain people with his malign influence, turning them into clones of himself. In contrast, the members of the Crew of Light, an organization that hunts vampires, are morally upright by nature (2019). In this tale, even naturally nice people can turn evil because of Dracula’s capacity to contaminate others.

Lucy’s emergence as a vampire highlights the concept of good against evil. Like when she was alive, Lucy still has a lovely, alluring, and welcoming appearance in her deceased state. She doesn’t have the appearance of a terrifying monster. She even acts as though she loves Arthur, who is her fiancé. She may look innocent, but she is a violent creature eager to harm everyone approaching her. In the struggle between good and evil, Lucy shows how any side’s power may manifest itself in unpredictable ways. When they murder the vampire form of Lucy and release her soul, the guys are proven to be able to save her.

Stoker makes it quite apparent that although black magic and belief are harmful, Religion is good. When the locals start arming Jonathan with Christian emblems as soon as they find out he’s headed to the castle of Count Dracula, Jonathan ignores the caution. According to Jonathan, she wrapped the rosary around my neck and murmured that it was for her mother’s sake before leaving the room. The crucifix is still on my neck (2022). A cross with a picture of Jesus on it is called a crucifix. Holy wafers, often known as communion wine, and symbols are also employed across the novel to stave off the Un-Dead.

On the other hand, it is asserted that the condition was initially brought on by black magic. The Evil One Count interacted with the Dracula household. Dracula studied at Schoolman, an institution where black magic is studied, but it was dangerous to enroll since the devil considered himself to be entitled to the tenth student.

Stoker also associates innocence with good, whereas sexualized women and infidelity are associated with evil. Jonathan says that even though he knows that the three female vampires will not kiss him with their crimson lips when he awakens to discover them in his room. I felt nervous with them for some reason. Jonathan said we should be afraid of the gorgeous, evil ladies. Lucy embodies the exact opposite. She is kind and innocent and adores her mother and the elderly. Her three declarations of love in one day prove that men are smitten by her generosity and cannot help but fall in love. The purity was corrupted into sensual wantonness, and the tenderness was transformed into adamantine, soulless malice. The three guys who had formerly adored her discover that she no longer possesses anything admirable (2019). Along with other violent adjustments in her actions, she has become fetishized and is, therefore, evil, as per the duality of Dracula.

Bram Stoker’s 1897 Count Dracula was not the seductive, enigmatic, or dapper aristocrat that Dracula is frequently associated with today. There are a lot of ideas regarding how Stoker created Dracula’s appearance; some have said that the Irish author based him on Walt Whitman, who was his particular idol. In a personal letter, Stoker once said that Whitman might be his father, brother, and soul mate. According to Stoker, Dracula had a stubbly beard, a broad nose, and white hair that grew freely everywhere but sparsely around the eyes. See where the Whitman accusations came from. He characterizes the Count as having an extraordinarily pallid appearance in general.

The Gothic genre, which served as the setting for Bram Stoker’s Dracula, was developed when the traditional passion for its love of the eerie and mysterious combined with the accurate depiction of historical events that characterized English writing in the 18th and 19th centuries. Since Dracula was the ideal vehicle for the generation’s anxieties and ambitions, it eventually rose to the top of Classic horror fiction. Dracula represented all that was menacing, strong, seductive, and vicious as an evil intrusive who disturbed innocent people. Dracula’s model was Vlad the Avenger. In truth, these purported ties to the well-known book underpin a large portion of the region’s tourist sector.

Work Cited

Hermans, Johan, et al. “Dracula–at home and in captivity.” (2019).

Cotti-Lowell, Alison Fanous. “Evangelical Gothic: The English Novel and the Religious War on Virtue from Wesley to Dracula, by Herbert, Christopher.” Religion and the Arts 26.1-2 (2022): 209-214.

Moreno, Jesus Alejandro. Trusting God’s Path: an Account of the Preparation and Performance of Jonathan Harker in Dracula, by Bram Stoker, Adapted for the Stage by William McNulty. Diss. Regent University, 2021.

Marks, Laura Helen. Alice in Portland: Hardcore Encounters with the Victorian Gothic. University of Illinois Press, 2018.

Police, Tobias, et al. “Dracula orchids exploit guilds of fungus visiting flies: new perspectives on a mushroom mimic.” Ecological Entomology 44.4 (2019): 457-470.

Mary Shelley’s Novel “Frankenstein”

Many issues have been raised recently about the link between morality and science. It is depicted in Mary Shelley’s novel “Frankenstein.” The novel develops an interest in science and becomes motivated to discover the mystery of life. Shelley Mary fashions a monster resembling a man and was made from the remains of the dead. He is irritated by the small thing. For viewers, “Frankenstein” addresses ethical questions of faith and science by demonstrating the results of uncontrolled research and the activities of competing with God and mixing the notions of death and life.

In the mid-19th novel “Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein,” the article claims that information and creativity might be hazardous to humanity and individuals. Shelley offers significant pieces of evidence in the manuscript based on the outcomes of the morally cruel investigation and evaluation. The notion of improvement is connected to the principle of progress by focusing on industrialization and science. Thus, although the image by artistic abilities, it was that control, apparently within by investigators in English and also overall culture, that might have been applied to produce analytical backing for Frankenstein.

The dilemma that is happening in the novel that still exists today is whether God superior to science or is science superior to God (Shelley et al. P. 36). Victor attempted to behave like God by attempting to create a creature similar to himself while ignoring the fact that the Lord is the source of life. Victor created the monster in order to bring the mystery to life. Several scientists, including Victor, believe that religion and science are distinct entities. They finally desire to battle with a superior creature, which is quite difficult. Because Victor lacked God’s ability to create life, he created a being that produced destruction.

Shelley inscribed a real narrative and recognized that it was solely reliant on a minute number of reasonable characters for conviction. Essentially, the discipline supplied in work gave such authority, leading to a fixed account for what English tradition will have recognized as a plausible fact with Shelley. Furthermore, discussing science in fantasy is not only an improved approach based on narration, or it is used, excluding inadvertently, passing on new data about the world (Shelley et al. P. 50). Long ago, a fantasy that was not actually acknowledged its influence from the “Muse” from several references, especially from the Bible.

Neither of the power fountains would accomplish for the author. However, power has steadily been located somewhere founded on an occasion that is to identify the fictions that tell the out falsehoods and true forms.

The author did not differentiate between death and life. In society, death and life are seen as distinct entities. Frankenstein attempted to merge the two features by utilizing cadaver components to form a monster that resembled himself. The creature ultimately came alive and faced several hurdles during its existence (Shelley et al. P. 45). It was unsightly, and no one wanted to be associated with him. Due to the obvious ingredients utilized to make the monster, it had a more distinctive appearance than the average person.

Victor portrays the notion of unconstrained science effectively. Victor has always been interested in science and has a special interest in alchemy. He decided to use his knowledge for selfish advantage by following his goal to discover the mystery of life. Victor gathers non-living materials and works diligently to finish his creation. He ignored extremely significant components of his life when creating his product, such as upbringing or nurture. He is completely unconcerned about the repercussions of his conduct (Shelley et al. P. 51). Victor’s invention was lonely and wretched as a result of Victor’s carelessness, prohibiting Victor from leading a good life.

Nevertheless, ethical difficulties raised by the progression that outperforms its creator and also emerges to advocate for its existence are highlighted in Frankenstein. It should be Shelley’s concern. For the author, the pervading concept of perfectibility and development of man in the lack of good feeling is a misunderstanding and a coming flat to humanism. Shelley examined the ethics of driving improvements in her tale.

The current news item that is similar to this issue is the one that people are intended to go and live on planet mars. Some scientists have revealed that there is life on the planet Mars. Also, there are arrangements to be made where individuals go and start their new life on mars.

Moreover, the author saw the sign that all of the advances may bring. From that perspective, the novel is just a remember waking call on what is to come. Shelley’s account of frightfulness is a crucial comprehension of the repercussions of ruthless logical and ethically inventive research. “Frankenstein” contributes to the discussion of scientific ethics in society. For readers, the story addresses ethical questions of faith and science by demonstrating the implications of unbridled science and the activities of competing with God and mixing the notions of death and life.

Works Cited

Shelley, Mary, and Gillie Bolton. “Frankenstein.” Medicine and Literature. CRC Press, 2018. 35-52.