Frankenstein (Mary Shelley)

Sarah Egan
Mind Map by , created almost 4 years ago

Characters. themes, symbols, and influences of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

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Sarah Egan
Created by Sarah Egan almost 4 years ago
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Frankenstein (Mary Shelley)
1 Mary Shelley

Attachments:

1.1 Daughter of Mary Wollstonecraft (Vindication of the Rights of Women)
1.2 Married to Percy Bysshe Shelley (Romantic poet - Ozymandias)
1.3 Close friend of Lord Byron (Romantic Poet - Don Juan)
1.4 Father was political philosopher William Godwin
1.5 Wrote Frankenstein in 1818, when she was only 18 years old!
1.5.1 Originally published anonymously
2 Characters
2.1 Victor Frankenstein

Attachments:

2.1.1 Walton (first narrator)
2.1.2 William (brother), killed by the creature
2.1.3 Justine, accused of William's murder
2.1.4 Elizabeth (adopted sister/fiance)
2.1.5 Clerval (best friend)
2.1.6 The Creature
2.1.6.1 The De Lacey family
2.1.6.1.1 Safie
3 Cultural Influence

Attachments:

3.1 1931 Frankenstein, Boris Karloff as the creature
3.2 1974 Young Frankenstein, developed by Mel Brooks
3.3 1994: Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, directed by Kenneth Branagh
4 Themes
4.1 Ambition/ hubris

Annotations:

  • Walton's quest for discovery Frankenstein's desire to create life Danger of this - the Modern Prometheus...
4.2 Knowledge/ education

Annotations:

  • * Victor's study at college and Independent research * The creature learns from observing the De Lacey family and reading * Safie learns language from the De Laceys * Walton's quest of discovery
4.3 Nature vs Society

Annotations:

  • Nature is sublime: beautiful and restores health, but also dangerous. Creature wants to be part of society but  it is corrupting and leads to loss of innocence.
4.4 Family

Annotations:

  • Family relationships are very important: * Victor and Elizabeth * The impact of William's death on Victor * The effect of seeing the De Lacey family on the Creature * The Creature's lack of family and desire for a mate * The narrator, Walton, writes to his dear sister
4.5 Prejudice

Annotations:

  • The only person who doesn't judge the creature negatively is the old man De Lacey who is blind so can't see him
4.6 Revenge

Annotations:

  • The creature takes revenge on Frankenstein by killing Elizabeth on their wedding night.
5 Symbols
5.1 Fire

Annotations:

  • The Creature discovers fire: it warms him, but also burns him. Fire as a source of punishment, e.g. the Creature's description of Hell (influence of Milton's Paradise Lost)
5.1.1 Subtitle: The Modern Prometheus

Annotations:

  • Prometheus: Greek God who stole fire from Mount Olympus and gave to humans-
5.2 Light

Annotations:

  • * Symbolises enlightenment * Walton's quest to the Arctic: "a country of eternal light" * Victor refers to light when he discovers natural philosophy and when he feels his study is advancing ***Light can be blinding as well as illuminating***
6 Structure and Genre

Attachments:

6.1 Epistolary form (Walton's letters)

Attachments:

6.2 Gothic

Attachments:

6.3 Romantic

Attachments:

6.4 Developed while competing with Byron, Percy Shelley and John Polidori to make a scary horror story at Lake Geneva
6.5 Narrative frame (Victor's story within Walton's, the creature's story within Victor's)