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« This Week's Acquisitions | Main | A somewhat frightening realization »

April 13, 2007


Rich Puchalsky

The suggestion that Mary Shelley didn't write Frankenstein isn't worth addressing; the argument from lack of quality is not really any better than the argument from quality. But I did think that Greer's suggestion that the tension in the novel was from the "nameless female dread [...] of gestating a monster" was quite good. Mary Shelley explicitly equates the book to the monster to her child in her 1831 introduction: "And now, once again, I bid my hideous progeny go forth and prosper." I was going to write about that in detail if the Valve was going to do something about Frankenstein; I suppose that I shouldn't even try to think that anything can now be said about the work that hasn't already been said.


I dunno - if someone's main argument is that book X is 'too good' for author Y to have written it, then pointing out that the book isn't in fact very good seems a reasonable way to undermine the argument without wasting too much time over it. And it's been a while since Germaine gave me this much entertainment.


i think that frankenstien is one of the great novels of corperality, adn the problem is that most texts that deal with the implications of the flesh, tend to be claimed by queer theroists, dracula as well as fact.

Susan Tyler Hitchcock

If Lauritsen or anyone else wants homoeroticism Frankenstein-style, he should get out his copy (or DVD or video) of Isherwood and Bachardy's FRANKENSTEIN: THE TRUE STORY -- so titled much to the authors' chagrin. Now that's the tale of the monster made by man in man's own idealistic image...until fickle man scorns his beautiful monster, who grows ugly in return. I comment on this and many other Frankensteins in my forthcoming book, FRANKENSTEIN: A CULTURAL HISTORY, due out from Norton in October 2007.
-- Susan Tyler Hitchcock


I recall reading, in a 300-level English class, a bit of criticism by Gayatri Spivak claiming that Frankenstein was a homoerotic work.

It was the worst piece of tripe (the criticism) I'd ever been forced to read. Bare assertion piled upon bare assertion; an obvious case of creating whatever one searches for.

I didn't buy it then, and I don't buy it now.

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