Novel Conversations

On the 11th March 1818 Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus was published. This year is the bicentennial of its publication.

Frankenstein can be read as a political metaphor for the French Revolution, which at the time (1818) of publication was fresh in people’s minds.   It can also be tied to readings of Marxism with Viktor Frankenstein representing the bourgeoisie and the monster, or the sum of his parts representing proletariat being the workers or wage earners.

In more recent years there have been various adaptions for TV populating the idea that the monster is Frankenstein, however Dr Viktor Frankenstein who created the monster is the said title of the book.

Dr Frankenstein constructs the monster of dismembered body parts from various corpses bringing the hideous creature to life. The creature is naïve and innocent to the ways of the world, rejected by his creator he wanders the world looking for a soul mate, however, he quickly learns he is judged on his appearance rather than his intellect.

The monster then unleashes violence on mankind, Viktor Frankenstein and his family in retribution for his hideous creation.

The novel renders the question as to just who is the monster when judging the characters. The creature itself or Frankenstein for his selfish desire to be the creator of a new species?

Frankenstein; or The Modern Prometheus may be 200 years old but it still has everything that a gothic classic novel calls for to capture readers today.