Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

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Discuss the extent to which one of the following novels is informed by contemporary social issues: Great Expectations Fathers and Son, Frankenstein.

The novel I have chosen to discuss is Frankenstein. Written in 1818 by Mary Shelley, Frankenstein is classified as a gothic novel, however, Shelly uses both realist and non-realist techniques. I will be looking at her reasons for writing the novel and what influenced her, as well as the realist and non-realist techniques used. I will be looking at some of the contemporary social issues that affected Shelley’s life at the time she wrote her novel. These will include Nature versus Nurture and Love and Responsibility. Frankenstein was written after Mary Shelley and a group of her friends
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Victor tells us about his family ‘I am by birth a Genevese; and my family is one of the most distinguished of that republic’ (Frankenstein p18) He tells of how his parents met and how Elizabeth came to live with his family. He portrays a happy childhood with loving parents. We as readers have no reason to doubt what we are being told. Victor’s voice is authoritative and his descriptions believable. The language is ‘transparent’ it ‘does not draw attention to itself ‘(The Realist Novel p10). Shelley uses vivid descriptions of the locations. The Shelley’s were well travelled and spent time in the Alpine region. She mentions actual place names ‘the bridge of Pelissier’ and ‘the Valley of Chamounix’(p73) Vivid descriptions are given ‘The view of the tremendous and ever moving glacier… the surface is very uneven rising like he waves of a troubled sea’.(p75) The use of simile here makes the language more elaborate and authenticates the location. She loved the Alpine region and was happy there. She spent time with some brilliant literary minds namely Shelley, Byron her father and others. She listened, if not always taking part in, conversations on politics and science. Speaking in London in 1831 she said of her book, ‘its several pages speak of many a walk, many a drive, and many a conversation, when I was not alone; and my companion one who, in this world I shall never see more. But this is for myself; my readers have nothing to do with
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