Frankenstein Quiz Flashcard Example #6915

How is science portrayed in Frankenstein? Consider that this book was written in the midst of vast scientific advances and the advent of the Industrial Revolution. Are we living in a similar period today? What contemporary issues seem based on Frankenstein’s-monster-type fears? (Try googling “Frankenfood” for some ideas.) What can you infer about his character as a result of his scientific project? In your opinion, is he an appealing person?
– science is portrayed as general knowledge
– a new system of science introduced practical ideas and methods, such as chemistry, and proved the findings of many physicians wrong
– Victor began to examine the causes of life and the natural decay and corruption of the human body
– he later discovered the causes of generation and life, and he became capable of bestowing life to lifeless matter
– today, new forms of science are continuously being discovered
– frankenfood is genetically modified food that is used as a scare tactic
– we can infer that he is a curious person who is very invested in natural philosophy
Victor warns Robert that acquiring knowledge can lead to “destruction and infallible misery.” Do you think that Victor Frankenstein went too far in his quest for knowledge? Did he have a good motive for his project? Did he have adequate knowledge to begin his project? What serious consequences might the acquisition of knowledge have? Would the monster have been less dangerous had he never acquired knowledge?
– he went too far and didn’t think of the consequences
– yes
– yes
– his acquisition of knowledge led him to create a monster and make a new scientific discovery, but he didn’t have enough knowledge of the future actions of the monster
– if he had never acquired knowledge the monster wouldn’t have been created at all
How is Frankenstein affected by what happens after he abandons the creature? Why does he call himself the “true murderer” of William? Why can’t Frankenstein tell anyone— even his father or Elizabeth—why he blames himself for the deaths of William, Justine, and Henry Clerval? Do you agree with Frankenstein that he bears some responsibility for their deaths? Why?
– William dies, and Victor sees the monster roaming around the area where William was murdered, convincing him that the monster killed William
– he calls himself the true murderer because he didn’t make sure that the monster wasn’t dangerous before abandoning it in the middle of nowhere
– he can’t tell anyone because he thinks they’ll blame him too
– he’s responsible because he doesn’t try hard enough to keep his family out of danger
In his afterword in the Signet Classics edition of Frankenstein, Harold Bloom asserts, “all Romantic horrors are diseases of excessive consciousness, of the self unable to bear the self.” Does this Romantic characteristic apply to Victor and his treatment of the creature? Explain. Consider the fact that Victor never gives the creature a name. What does it say about us in society today that we think the monster’s name is Frankenstein, besides the fact that we’re apparently ill-read?
– yes
– after Victor creates the monster, he hates himself for it and while he’s disgusted with it, he’s more disgusted with himself for creating it
– in a way, Frankenstein is the real monster for creating the creature and not ensuring that it won’t inflict harm upon everyone
Frankenstein says, “I shunned my fellow creatures as if I had been guilty of a crime.” From your reading, give specific examples of Frankenstein’s isolation from others. What does this tell you about his personality? Explain.
– he isolates himself while creating the monster and doesn’t write to his family and friends
– after he creates the monster he gets really sick, causing physical isolation
– when he went to Scotland alone to make Frankenstein a mate so that he would leave
– he’s a self-loathing person because he hates the fact that he created such a dangerous creature
How does the creature explain his evil behavior? Why does the creature compare himself to the biblical character Adam? Do you think this comparison is accurate? Why or why not?
– the creature says that humans always get love and attention while he always gets maltreated
– he compares himself to Adam because they both have a creator who abandoned them
– it’s not accurate because one creator knew what he was doing
The horror story is just as popular today as it was in Shelley’s early nineteenth century England. What is the appeal of this genre? Discuss elements from Frankenstein that parallel characteristics of modern horror tales such as Stephen King’s, or films such as Nightmare on Elm Street. What are the effects of these elements on the audience, and how might that explain our fascination? Are the ideas too well visited now to for the book to be scary or do you find it frightening as a horror story?
– the appeal of the genre is that the suspense associated with horror stories has an impact on the audience and forces individuals to face their fears
– the monster in Frankenstein instills fear upon others due to its monstrous features and dangerous actions, similar to the villains of modern horror tales
– the audience knows that these frightening movies are fictional, however they are still scared while watching them
– that explains our fascination because while watching horror films, the audience gets a rush of adrenaline, which many people enjoy
– it’s still frightening
Dr. Frankenstein finds himself unable to “mother” the being he creates. Why does Shelley characterize Victor in this way? What does this choice say about the role of
women during Shelley’s era? Discuss the significance of parent-child relationships and birth references throughout the novel.
Dreams and nightmares, sickness and fever, and ice play recurrent roles throughout Shelley’s novel. Trace the use of these or other symbols throughout the book, with emphasis on how they relate to changes in Victor’s character and themes Shelley is expressing.
– when victor is being super self-loathing, he gets sick
– ice is described mainly when victor isolates himself
Consider the character of Justine Moritz. While her story only takes two chapters of Shelley’s novel, her role as a secondary character is significant. What is Shelley’s purpose in telling Justine’s story? What truths about her time is Shelley revealing?
The patriarchal society of Frankenstein is one in which men pursue their goals against hopeless odds. In light of this work ethic, is Robert Walton a failure when he turns his ship around at the end of the novel? How would Victor Frankenstein answer this question? What would Mary Shelley say? What do you think?
– walton didn’t fail because he still gained something from his trip
– victor would say he failed
Ambition and obsession seem rampant in the text. Is Robert Walton’s ambition similar to Frankenstein’s, as Frankenstein believes? Why does Frankenstein become obsessed with creating life? What do you think of the monsters obsession for a mate?
– yes
– he becomes obsessed with creating life because he was fascinated with the causes of life and the natural decay and corruption of the human body
– the monster was lonely and wanted a friend who wouldn’t judge him, but he didn’t consider the fact that the mate might want to murder a bunch of people
Why is Frankenstein filled with disgust, calling the monster “my enemy,” as soon as he has created him?
– he was afraid of the responsibility that comes with the despicable actions of the monster
– he might have not thought it would actually work
What does the monster think his creator owes him?
– a mate so that he won’t be lonely anymore
Why does Frankenstein agree to create a bride for the monster, then procrastinate and finally break his promise? If the claim that he breaks his promise to create him a companion is because he doesn’t trust the monster, consider if you think the monster is trustworthy? Can Victor be trustworthy even though he broke his promise?
– he had many doubts about the female monster and destroys it before it’s completed, resulting in the man monster’s vow of revenge
– not trustworthy
The monster’s pledge “I shall be with you on your wedding-night” threatens Elizabeth as well as Frankenstein, but he does nothing…why?
– idk
Why does Frankenstein find new purpose in life when he decides to seek revenge on the monster “until he or I shall perish in mortal conflict”?
– he is getting justice for his dead family members
– if he dies he’s getting what he deserves
Why are Frankenstein and his monster both ultimately miserable, bereft of human companionship, and obsessed with revenge? Are they in the same situation at the end of the novel?
– because they hate themselves
– yes
Why doesn’t Walton kill the monster when he has the chance?
– idk
Who is the actual monster in Frankenstein?
– victor
At its heart, Frankenstein is interested in the question of nature vs. nurture: are people blank slates that are formed by experiences and environment, or are we born with certain traits—like being evil? What does the book seem to suggest? How do you know?
– formed by experiences
– frankenstein explains that he has a good heart but then gets pissed when people treat him poorly
You might have noticed some Christian influences in this text. To start off, there’s the creator/creation paradigm. And, of course, the monster is compared to Adam. But the
monster is also compared to the fallen angel—Satan—and Victor takes on comparisons to God. You could even go so far as to call Victor’s death a sacrifice that makes him a Christ figure. What might Shelley be saying about religion, and Christianity in particular? (Keep in mind that, while we’re not sure how Mary Shelley felt about religion, both her father and husband were big, honking atheists in a time when atheism could get you into serious trouble.)
If we can’t trust appearances, what can we trust? Words can be misinterpreted; actions can be understood. Is there any way to truly understand another person in Frankenstein?
Shelley emphasizes the importance of family and suggests that the monster would have turned out differently if he’d had people around him who loved and understood him. But the rest of the world would still have hated and feared him. Would a loving family really have prevented tragedy?
What’s the point of the frame narrative? Why do we begin and end with Robert Walton? Does he learn a lesson from his encounter with Frankenstein? If so, what is it? Did it make the telling of the story more or less credible to the reader and the witnesses within the narrative?

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