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Considering Frankenstein

From a thematic perspective Frankenstein was to have a far more universal value than Mary Shelley could foresee. The novel became immensely popular as a horror story at the time; people loved thrilling stories with all the gothic elements of horror and mystery. But Frankenstein’s ambitions and laboratory work point in a direction which has put the theme of the book right in the middle of a current and highly topical debate.

  1. What is the theme of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein?
  2. How does science today compare with Frankenstein’s experiments?
  3. Mention some ways that science today is able to manipulate or even create life.
  4. Why is genetic manipulation such a questionable issue?
  5. Biological manipulation of e.g. vegetables can make them stay fresh longer, which probably is a good thing. But do you think there is a limit somewhere where this kind of manipulation becomes morally disputable?

Go on the net and do some research and see if you can come up with different views on the issue. Key words may be:

  • Parent cell research
  • Cloning
  • Genetic manipulation
  • Future biological prospects
  • The religious perspective on genetic manipulation
Last updated 03/05/2018
Text: Jan-Louis Nagel (CC BY-SA)

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Literature from 1780 to 1840

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