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Frankenstein, Science Fiction, and the Poetry of Science

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Date Issued:
2008
Abstract/Description:
While Frankenstein has recently received criticism weighted heavily in politics, gender, and feminist studies, what gets overlooked in these discussions is that Mary Shelley's novel remains a story about science--not about empirical science, necessarily, but about abstract science. As science fiction, Frankenstein incorporates fictional science to posit truths about the human experience. Shelley's metaphor for the novel, ''my hideous progeny," reminds readers to respect the uncertain elements in invention in the arts and sciences. The problem for Frankenstein that I address has to do with an uncertainty of the terms, "science'' and "science fiction ,'' which results in further uncertainty when discussing the novel's genre and meaning. This essay defines "science," "science fiction," and other important tenns relevant to a critical discussion of the novel. This essay further argues that readers should not overlook the poetry of science in Frankenstein.
Title: Frankenstein, Science Fiction, and the Poetry of Science.
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Name(s): Davis, Peter
Faraci, Mary, Thesis advisor
Florida Atlantic University, Degree grantor
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation
Date Created: 2008
Date Issued: 2008
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Place of Publication: Boca Raton, Fla.
Physical Form: application/pdf
Extent: 59 p.
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: While Frankenstein has recently received criticism weighted heavily in politics, gender, and feminist studies, what gets overlooked in these discussions is that Mary Shelley's novel remains a story about science--not about empirical science, necessarily, but about abstract science. As science fiction, Frankenstein incorporates fictional science to posit truths about the human experience. Shelley's metaphor for the novel, ''my hideous progeny," reminds readers to respect the uncertain elements in invention in the arts and sciences. The problem for Frankenstein that I address has to do with an uncertainty of the terms, "science'' and "science fiction ,'' which results in further uncertainty when discussing the novel's genre and meaning. This essay defines "science," "science fiction," and other important tenns relevant to a critical discussion of the novel. This essay further argues that readers should not overlook the poetry of science in Frankenstein.
Identifier: FA00000908 (IID)
Degree granted: Thesis (M.A.)--Florida Atlantic University, 2008.
Collection: FAU Electronic Theses and Dissertations Collection
Note(s): Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters
Subject(s): Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft,--1797-1851.--Frankenstein--Criticism and interpretation.
Frankenstein (Fictitious character)--Criticism and interpretation.
Science fiction, English--History and criticism--Theory, etc.
Held by: Florida Atlantic University Libraries
Sublocation: Digital Library
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fau/fd/FA00000908
Use and Reproduction: Copyright © is held by the author with permission granted to Florida Atlantic University to digitize, archive and distribute this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
Host Institution: FAU
Is Part of Series: Florida Atlantic University Digital Library Collections.