Othic Horror 1770-1900: This type of coursework must be a close reading of a portion of a text.
Close reading text: Frankenstein pp.34-37 (Oxford World Classics, 2008 Chapter III).
You should consider the following:
How the extract relates to the text as a whole (though be careful not just to tell the story).
The distinctive features of the language
Why the passage is interesting in the wider context of gothic fiction.
How does the passage contribute to the principal themes of the text.
Comment on point of style.
What mood/atmosphere does the text create and how?
Which words do you notice first and why?
Do any words seem oddly used to you? Do any of them have double meanings?
Is the passage symbolic how?
Are there metaphors? What kinds? Is there one over-arching metaphor?
What role does the narrator play? Does the narrator have a limited viewpoint or is the narrator omniscient?
Context of Shelleys life…
Gods role…playing of God.
Relentless pursuit of knowledge.
Use of nature monsters moods affected by nature.
Different narratives intertextuality patch-work like the monster…Is Victor the monster?
Does society create the monster?
All of foreshadowing Eliazabeths death…
Freuds uncanny…does he have a soul?
Science in practice is disastrous?
Context of technology advancing…flies in the face of God.
Shelley drags our attention to the poor, uneducated…Industrial revolution emergence of the middle class.
Sublimity of knowledge…dangers of knowledge.
The Other social fear.
What causes the fear of rebellion? What is the reaction of deviance?
Nature vs. nurture.
Do you think that solitude is a good thing or a bad thing in the novel?
Discuss the different narrative perspectives in this novel what effect do these different voices have?
graduate.engl.virginia.edu/enec981/Group/chris.uncanny.html THE UNCANNY: SIGMUND FREUD
Ellis, Markman. The History of Gothic Fiction (Edinburgh University Press, 2000).
Punter, David. The Literature of Terror: A History of Gothic Fiction from 1765 to the
Edwardian Age [vol 1] (Longman, 1996).