The 1831 Creature, shown on page 29, is not a patent “monster”: It’s full-grown, remarkably ripped, human-looking, understandably dazed.The real “monster,” we could think, is the reckless student fleeing the results of an unsupervised undergraduate experiment gone rogue.To turn him loose in the manhood of his physical strength ...
Abolitionists saw the capitalists, investors, and masters as the moral monsters of the global economy.
Unable to endure the aspect of the being I had created, I rushed out of the room.” Repelled by this betrayal of “beauty,” Frankenstein never feels responsible, let alone parental.
Shelley’s genius is to understand this ethical monstrosity as a nightmare extreme of common anxiety for expectant parents: What if I can’t love a child whose physical formation is appalling (deformed, deficient, or even, as at her own birth, just female)?
The original told a terrific tale, tapping the idealism in the new sciences of its own age, while registering the throb of misgivings and terrors.
The 1818 novel appeared anonymously by a down-market press (Princeton owns one of only 500 copies). The novelist proudly signed herself “Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley” when it was reissued in 1823, in sync with a stage concoction at London’s Royal Opera House in August.