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- Do not use first or second person.
2. Do not use contractions or abbreviations.
3. Remember that you must used quoted and cited excerpts from the novel.
4. Always write about events in literature in the present tense.
5. Be SURE to have a Works Cited or Reference page. You are using excerpts fromFrankenstein, so that text must be cited in the Works Cited or Reference page. Also, be sure to use in-text, parenthetical citations after each excerpt you use in the paper.
6. Please review your list of major errors thus far, and then proofread your paper all the way through, one time each, for each error that you tend to make. After that, proof it for typical major errors, and then overall.
7. Target length is 400-500 words. Choose ONE and ONLY ONE of the following prompts and write Paper 3 based upon that prompt.
Do not start your paper as if you are just answering a question. Use your introduction to set up the entire argument. Remember that your reader has not seen the prompt!
- Mary Shelley subtitles her novelFrankensteinin the following way: “or, the Modern Prometheus.” Prometheus was a figure from Greek mythology who stole fire from the gods and used it to create humans. Based on your knowledge of this myth, construct an essay in which you defend or refute the idea that Victor is the modern Prometheus. Incorporate specific, concrete evidence from the novel to support your arguments. Be sure to dig beneath the surface similarities between the myth and Shelley’s novel in order to identify latent symbols and their significance. What is her purpose in creating this subtitle? Once you have determined the purpose (or purposes), then argue that the subtitle is (or is not) appropriate for the story.
- Cultural critics of the novelFrankensteinanalyze the work as a dramatization of John Locke’s views of the development of character. In his 1690 Essay Concerning Human Understanding, Locke argues that humans are products of their experiences, not of any pre-determined Calvinistic belief that God has set a course and personality for them. Analyze the character of Victor Frankenstein’s creation, and then argue that he is (or is not) an example of Locke’s concept of how character develops.
- Mary Shelley has Victor Frankenstein create a living being who then becomes a murderer. Who or what is responsible for the wretch’s behavior? Is Shelley casting blame on a society that refuses to accept the wretch? Does she hold Victor responsible for his negligence as a “parent” (both father and mother), or is the wretch himself responsible for the chaos he creates? Support your views with incidents and quotations from the novel.
- The novelFrankensteinbegins with the narrator Robert Walton, an explorer on his way to the North Pole. Shelley then creates a framed narration; that is, in Volume 1, chapter one, Victor Frankenstein takes over as a narrator within Walton’s narration. Later in the novel, Shelley creates a third layer of narration by having Victor’s creation narrate his story (Volume 2, chapters 3-8). Argue what you believe the purposes are for such a layered story and what effects on the reader this layering produces. Identify how each of the narrators differs, what his motives might be, and what the implications are for the novel. You may wish to go beyond this suggestion to offer a well-considered opinion about who you believe to be the most reliable narrator, and why. Alternately, you may wish to argue how the novel would have been different if one or more of the narrators was not present in the text.
- “If I could banish disease from the human frame, and render man invulnerable to any but a violent death!” says Victor Frankenstein. Victor has good intentions as he takes up his study of science, yet his results are disastrous for his family, friends, and himself. Is this novel a Romanticist’s critique of education, in particular of the devastation created by scientific knowledge that ultimately cannot be controlled? Support your view.
- Mary Shelley creates submissive female characters in this novel, all of whom die, two indirectly at the hands of Victor. What do you believe Shelley is saying about women–and the men in their lives–in the novel?
- 7.Frankenstein is one of the finest expressions of the Gothic novel and also fits many of the characteristics of a Romantic novel (Links to an external site.). Consider all of the elements that comprise a story—including setting, character development, narrative voice, tone, to name just a few—and explain how each element contributes to the novel’s identity as a Gothic text or example of Romanticism (Links to an external site.). Then, offer your interpretation of Shelley’s message, if you believe she intended to convey one to her reader. If, alternately, you believe that the novel is purely for entertainment purposes, substantiate your claim with textual evidence
- Victor as God in Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley
Many students and critics have accused Victor of “playing God” by fabricating the Creature in his laboratory. Playing God, though, implies that a character is flawed by excessive hubris, which may or may not be applicable to Victor. Consider your own reaction to this charge, and write an essay in which you construct a solid argument that conveys your position to the reader. You will need to identify Victor’s character traits and explain how they do or do not substantiate the claim that Victor is trying to play God. You will also need to be sure to cite specific actions that Victor takes which provide evidence for your own claims. It might also be useful to consider the ways the presence of a “god” has an effect on the Creature (Links to an external site.) in Frankenstein by Mary Shelley.