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The Frankenstein Essay – A Novel Written in a Weekend

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The Frankenstein Essay

Mary Shelley, her husband, and another couple were vacationing in Switzerland when they got snowed in. To pass the time, they decided to have a contest. Each of them would write a horror tale. At the end of the weekend, everyone agreed that Mary’s story was the best. Shortly thereafter, the short book was published and, as they say, “the rest is history.”

Kids and teens may read Frankenstein, but most probably they watch either the original film adaptation or one of the awful remakes since then. At that age, they don’t “get” that there are some important themes in the work, and that Shelley’s tale had a lot to say about human nature and nature both.

Studying Frankenstein in College – Early Science Fiction

Most science fiction authors have great stories but all of them have one other thing in common. They have very serious themes amongst the space visitors, the time travel, and the intriguing machinery and technology. If you study Frankenstein in college, you will undoubtedly receive a written assignment, either in the form of essay questions to answer or an essay itself. You must not get above the actual plot of the creation of a monster and take a look at the characters if you are to come up with good topic ideas for an essay on this work.

Essay Topics for Frankenstein

Here is a short list of some essay topic ideas:

Essays on the Themes

  1. One theme in the novel is the danger of the pursuit of knowledge without some restraints. Thus Frankenstein became obsessed with creating life and, knowing that he was probably venturing into dangerous territory, became obsessed with his research and kept it secret from others. Are there examples in history when man has pursued knowledge without forethought to the consequences?
  2. Another theme is the power of nature. Walton discovers the power of nature as he pursues knowledge by traveling to the North Pole. Nature, however, intervenes and prevents his pursuit. Frankenstein, too, is a victim of the cold and must be rescued by Walton. The monster’s personality, as it develops, is heavily tied to weather. After roaming in isolation all winter, his spirits are buoyed by the coming of spring. What do psychologists now say about weather and season and their impacts on mood?

Other Essay Topics

  1. Looking at the theme of knowledge pursuit, compare Walton and Frankenstein
  2. Who is the real monster – Frankenstein or the monster he created?
  3. Write a persuasive essay for or against the pursuit of bio-engineering and the prospect of pre-determining the traits of children while they are still in the womb. Compare it to Frankenstein and his pursuit.

You see, there are some important things to think about as you read and reflect on Frankenstein. We humans seem to race to conquer the next field of knowledge without first thinking of its long-term consequences. Perhaps artificial intelligence is our next “monster.”