Reading more into Frankenstein
The literature that influenced one of history’s most famous novels is to be examined at the next meeting of Dundee Arts Café.
Dr Daniel Cook, a senior lecturer of English at Dundee University, will reveal how Frankenstein was shaped by the reading habits of the author, Mary Shelley, and how other books are integral to the plot of the book.
Ahead of Frankenstein: The Books That Made The Monster, which takes place at 6pm on Tuesday at The McManus, Dr Cook said: “Quite often we think of Frankenstein as a cultural myth rather than as a highly sophisticated piece of writing.
“In reality, Frankenstein is a book about books. Frankenstein’s monster is an attentive reader of the humanities, and that’s his problem.
“He reads Paradise Lost, the Bible, The Sorrows Of Young Werther and learns of and copies mankind’s flaws.
“Victor Frankenstein is an inattentive reader of the sciences. He rejects the modern science of Humphry Davy and others.
“The plot unfolds because of how the two protagonists read and that is something that I want to talk about, proving that Frankenstein is more than just the story of a mad scientist that has created a monster.”
Later this month, Dr Cook will publish a Dundee edition of Frankenstein, celebrating Mary Shelley’s ties with the city.