Frankensteinby Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Charlotte Gordon Published 08 Mar 2018
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Mary Shelley began writing Frankenstein when she was only eighteen. At once a Gothic thriller, a passionate romance, and a cautionary tale about the dangers of science, Frankenstein tells the story of committed science student Victor Frankenstein. Obsessed with discovering the cause of generation and life and bestowing animation upon lifeless matter, Frankenstein assembles a human being from stolen body parts but; upon bringing it to life, he recoils in horror at the creature's hideousness. Tormented by isolation and loneliness, the once-innocent creature turns to evil and unleashes a campaign of murderous revenge against his creator, Frankenstein.
Frankenstein, an instant bestseller and an important ancestor of both the horror and science fiction genres, not only tells a terrifying story, but also raises profound, disturbing questions about the very nature of life and the place of humankind within the cosmos: What does it mean to be human? What responsibilities do we have to each other? How far can we go in tampering with Nature? In our age, filled with news of organ donation genetic engineering, and bio-terrorism, these questions are more relevant than ever.
في بدايات القرن التاسع عشر
كانت الكهرباء وقتها اختراعا طازجا
وحدثا يلقي الرهبة في القلوب
لقد كان معظم الناس يتصور أنها تحمل قدرات خارقة
ولذلك لم يكن من الصعب تخيل أنها يمكنها إعادة الحياة إلى الموتى
فقد كانوا يرونها اختراعا شيطانيا يثير غضب الرب
وأثناء جلسة جمعت بين بعض الشعراء والكتاب في قصر الشاعر لورد بايرن
اقترح المضيف أن يؤلف كل واحد منهم قصة رعب مختلفة
ومن هنا جاءت إحدى أشهر قصص الرعب الكلاسيكية على مر العصور
الحكاية عن شاب مخترع يدعى فيكتور فرانكنشتاين
قام بتجميع أجزاء من جثث الموتى
وباستخدام الصواعق الكهربية سواها كائنا حيا
يتنفس ويعيش ويحزن ويفرح ويحلم
ولما انتهى منه خالقه لم ير فيه سوى مسخا بشعا
فتركه وحيدا وهجره
مسخ ضخم ملامحه جامدة تملأ القطب وجهه وجسده
وكأنه دمية كل جزء فيها مخيط إلى الآخر
يملؤه الخجل لهيئته الغريبة المنفرة
يحمل عذاباته ويمضي
يتوارى في أي مكان مهجور لا يعرف طريقه النور
بعيدا عن أعين البشر الفضولية والقاسية
كائن مسكين لا يعلم السبب الذي جاء به إلى هذه الدنيا
التي لا تتقبله
ولما لا يعطف عليه أحد
حتى وإن كان خالقه نفسه
وصار المسخ منبوذا دون ان يفهم لهذه القسوة سببا
ومع الوقت تعتمل بداخله مشاعر الغضب
لتحل محل أي تساؤل حزين عبر أسلاك عقله
ويبدأ بعدها في الانتقام
أبدا لم يتخيل فرانكنشتاين أن ذلك المسخ الذي خلقه بيديه
سيحيل حياته جحيما
وبأنه سيكون السبب في موت أعز الناس على قلبه
فعندما يستهوي الانسان مناطحة الآلهة
هذا هو ما يحصل عليه
خراب وحياة مشوهة
وعذاب لم نكن لنتخيله
نحن أكثر ضعفا من تحمل مسئولية بهذه الجسامة
ولذلك فإننا ببساطة ..ننهار
هناك فارق عظيم بين فرانكنشتاين السينما وفرانكنشتاين الرواية
ففي السينما أضفت هوليود عليها سذاجة منقطعة النظير
وجعلتها مادة لأفلام لا نراها الآن سوى كوميديا فارس سخيفة أحيانا ومضحكة أحيانا أخرى
خصوصا مع عروس فرانكنشتاين الطريفة للغاية
كما أن فرانكنشتاين هو الاسم الذي أطلقته السينما على المسخ
في حين أنه يعود في الرواية إلى المخترع
من هو فرانكنشتاين الحقيقي؟
وكيف نبتت فكرته في عقل ماري الصغيرة؟
1-في الأصل كان لقبا لعائلة ألمانية نبيلة اشتهرت بقلعتها القديمة بالقرب من بلدة دارمشتات في ألمانيا
ولكن الأمر لا يتوقف عند هذا الحد
ففي هذه القلعة ولد وعاش "عالم" غريب الأطوار يدعى يوهان كونراد ديبيل
ولكن إمضاءه كان يوهان كونراد دي فرانكنشتاين
المهم أنه اشتهر بجنونه وغرابة أطواره
حتى أنه ادعى النبوة في وقت ما
وادعى اختراعه لإكسير الحياة الذي أنه يطيل العمر ويجدد الشباب
حسنا لم يكن الوحيد
ولكن المختلف مع هذا اليوهان هو أنه كانت له تجارب
يحاول فيها إعادة الحياة لجثث الموتى عن طريق الكهرباء
وقد سبب رعبا وذعرا لا حد له لأهل بلدته
ويقال إنه نجح في صناعة كف بشرية بإمكانها التحرك من تلقاء نفسها
2-في عام 1780 قام العالم جالفاني بتجارب مرر خلالها تيارات كهربية في أجساد ضفادع ميتة
فلاحظ ارتجافا في أطرافها عند صعقها بالكهرباء
بعدها بسنوات قام عالم آخر يدعي جيوفاني إلديني
في إحدى ساحات لندن العامة
قام بتوثيق جثة مجرم أعدم شنقا بالأسلاك الكهربية
-يعني باعتباره يصلح كفأر تجارب في نظرهم
بعدا قام بتمرير تيارا كهربيا قويا
ووسط صرخات الرعب وشهقات الدهشة
تغيرت ملامح الجثة وكأنها تتألم
حتى يقال بأنها فتحت عينيها
ومع ارتعاشات الجثة أغشى على بعض الحضور ظنا منهم بأنها ستعود فعلا إلى الحياة
وذلك كله عائد إلى الجهل وقتها بسلوك المواد والأجسام
التي يمر خلالها التيار الكهربي
هكذا تبلورت الفكرة لدى ماري شيللي زوجة الشاعر الأشهر
وهكذا ولدت رواية خالدة في الأدب
مولد "وحش" بدون ام .. بعد تجارب دامت 9 اشهر
هذا هو ملخص..خيال فج ..جامح...يصيبني بالدهشة دائما
. .كلما تأكدت انه صدر عن فتاة في سن 19 عاشت في مطلع القرن 19
ماري شيللي..فتاة ثرية مثقفة واجهت احساس الفقد مبكرا....نشات يتيمة الام منذ الولادة..
و فقدت ابنتها الرضيعة
..و هكذا ناقشت كل مشاكلها مع الموت من خلال دكتورفرانكشتاين..
طبيب شاب ناقص الإيمان..فيبدأ تجارب كهرباءية حمقاء
لبعث الجثث؟💥 و سرعان ما حظى" بصنيعته" المفترض انه مثال الجمال و الخلود..مسخ بشع...ذو سحنة ملفقة
و💫 تبدأ بعدها المشاكل الحقيقية لفرانكشتاين..
.و يبدا في تصحيح الخطا بخطأ من الطراز ذاته..
مشاعر المسخ المجروحة و ذكاؤه اللافت كانت المفاجأة الحقيقية في الرواية..
وبسببها صارت علامة هامة على طريق أدب الرعب
رواية متعددة الطبقات ..بسيطة اللغة ..مليئةبالعواطف المتناقضة.. و من افضل الروايات التي تعرضت لمشاعر الفقد..و الندم
و من المؤكد ان الرواية كانت تطهير لمشاعر ماري شيللي
و تصالحت من خلالها مع اهم حقائق الحياة:و
I finished it.
If you are a fan of classic literature and/or are utterly devoid of a sense of humor, stop reading this review right now.
I've always wondered what the real Frankenstein story was like...and now I know.
Sadly, sometimes the fantasy is better than the reality.
And the reality is, this book is a big steaming pile of poo.
It's an old-timey horror story, right?
Not so much.
I mean, I wasn't expecting it to actually be scary, but I thought it might be slightly creepy. Unfortunately, the only horror in the story centered around me having to keep turning the pages.
Beware mortal! You will DIE of boredom! Oooga-Booga-Booga!
Yep. Truly frightening.
It starts like this:
An upper-crust guy sails off to the Arctic to make discoveries, and to pass the time he writes to his sister. Supposedly, he's been sailing around on whaling ships for several years. And he's been proven an invaluable resource by other captains.
So I'm assuming he's a pretty crusty ol' sailor at this point.
Pay attention, because this is where Shelly proves that she knows nothing about men...
So this guy goes on and on in these letters to his sister about how he wishes on every star that he could find a BFF at sea. After a few (too many) letters, they pull a half-frozen Frankensicle out of the water.
Aaaaand here's what our salty sea dog has to say about the waterlogged mad scientist...
"Blah,blah, blah...his full-toned voice swells in my ears; his lustrous eyes dwell on me with all their melancholy sweetness...blah, blah, blah..."
Lustrous eyes?! No (straight) sailor ever, in the history of the world, EVER referred to another dude's eyes as lustrous.
And I know what you're thinking.
Well, Anne, maybe this character was gay. Didn't think about that, didja?!
Actually, yes. Yes, I did.
The only problem with that theory is that NONE of the male characters in this book sounded remotely male.
Ladies, do you remember that time in your life (probably around middle or high school), when you thought that guys actually had the same sort of thought waves running through their heads that we do? You know, before you realized that the really don't care about...well, all of the things that we do? You thought that while they were laughing at the booger their idiot friend just flicked across the room, something deeper was stirring in their mind. It just had to be!
I'm not sure when it happens, but at some point, every woman finally realizes the (fairly obvious) truth.
Men aren't women.
That booger was the funniest thing ever, and nothing was stirring around in them other than maybe some gas.
And that's ok.
Fart-lighting and long distance loogie hawking contests aside, they can pretty darn cool.
But this author was too young to realize that.
My personal opinion is that Mary was probably fairly sheltered when it came to real men. She was a teenage girl apparently running around with a bunch of artsy-fartsy dudes. Much like today, I would imagine these junior emos were probably blowing poetic smoke up her young ass in the high hopes of getting into her pants.
Although it's possible I'm totally misreading the situation.
Anyway, Frank tells his story, and Sea Dog writes it all down for his sister.
In excruciating detail.
Rivers, flowers, rocks, mountain tops...agonizingly cataloged. And the weather? God forbid a breeze blows through the story without at least a paragraph devoted to the way it felt on his skin or affected his mood!
And speaking of Frankenstein's mood.
I don't think I've ever had the pleasure of reading about a character this spineless before. What a pussy! He didn't talk so much as he whined.
And the swooning!
He was like one of those freaking Fainting Goats!
I can't even count how many times he blacked out and fell over. Of course, then he would get feverish and need "a period of convalescence" to recover.
Again, every episode was recounted with incredible attention to detail.
I'm thrilled that I never had to miss a moment of his sweaty brow getting daubed with water!
Randomly Inserted Fun Fact:
The monster quoted Milton in Paradise Lost.
Shockingly, I only know this because it was in the appendix, and not because I have any real-life experience with reading that one.
Was this the most painfully unnecessary book I've read this year?
Is there a deeper moral to this story?
Some would say, that the monster is a product of a society that refuses to accept someone who is different. Or maybe that Victor Frankenstein was the real monster for not realizing that he had a duty to parent and care for his creation? Perhaps it is meant to point out our obsession with perfection, and our willingness to disregard people who don't meet the standards of beauty as non-human?
Some might say any of those things.
I , however, learned a far different lesson from Frankenstein.
And it's this...
Trust no one.
Not even someone who (just an example) has been your Best Friend for decades!
Let's read a classic, Anne. It'll be fun, Anne. We can call each other with updates, Anne. It'll be just like a book club, Anne. Tee-hee!
Liar, liar! Pants on fire!
I read this whole God-awful book, and you quit after 10 pages!
I'm telling your mom!
Here's the quote that sums up my experience with Frankenstein:
"Blah, blah, blah...in all the misery I imagined and dreaded, I did not conceive the hundredth part of the anguish I was destined to endure."
Click here to watch a video review of this book on my channel, From Beginning to Bookend.
A sorrowful tale of lost love and self-loathing conveyed with divine prose.
It's been fifty years since I had read Frankenstein, and, now—after a recent second reading—I am pleased to know that the pleasures of that first reading have been revived. Once again--just as it was in my teens--I was thrilled by the first glimpse of the immense figure of the monster, driving his sled across the arctic ice, and marveled at the artful use of narrative frames within frame, each subsequent frame leading us closer to the heart of the novel, until we hear the alienated yet articulate voice of the creature himself. In addition, I admired the equally artful way the novel moves backward through the same frames until we again reach the arctic landscape which is the scene of the novel's beginning...and its end.
This time through, I was particularly struck with how Mary must have been influenced by the novels of her father. The relentless hounding of one man by another who feels his life has been poisoned by that man's irresponsible curiosity is a theme taken straight out of Godwin's Caleb Williams, and the cautionary account of a monomaniac who gradually deprives himself of the satisfactions of family, friends and love in pursuit of an intellectual ideal is reminiscent of the alchemist of St. Leon. Her prose also is like her father's in her ability to make delicate philosophical distinctions and express abstract ideas, but she is a much better writer than he: her sentences are more elegant and disciplined, and her descriptive details more aptly chosen and her scenes more effectively realized.
The conclusion of the novel seems hasty and incomplete, but perhaps that is because the concept of Frankenstein is so revolutionary that no conclusion could have seemed satisfactory. At any rate, this fine novel has given birth to a host of descendants, and—unlike Victor Frankenstein—is a worthy parent of its many diverse creations.
“I have love in me the likes of which you can scarcely imagine and rage the likes of which you would not believe. If I cannot satisfy the one, I will indulge the other.”
I was walking along earlier today with Jacquie and discussing the important things like, you know... books. And the subject of our top favourite books of all time came up. Oddly enough, two of our top three were the same - Wuthering Heights and Crime and Punishment. Then Jacquie said her third was a book that I hadn't thought about in a very long time. That book was Frankenstein. It hit me like a shot of good literature: I had forgotten all about this classic that had so affected me, made me think and completely torn my heart out multiple times.
Frankenstein? I said. I must go review that right now.
You see, though, the best and worst thing about this novel is how distorted it has become by constant movie adaptations and misinformed ideas about the nature of Frankenstein and his "monster". For years I thought Frankenstein was the name of that slightly green dude with the bolts in his neck. Nuh-uh.
Did Frankenstein scare me? Did it have me staying awake and sleeping with the light on, jumping at every slight creak in the house? Was I terrified of the monster and technology and the dangers of playing God? No. Because the beauty of this story is that it isn't the one so many people think it is. Which is almost my favourite thing about it. This book is not a Halloween kind of story with Halloween kind of monsters. This story is nothing short of heartbreakingly sad.
“...once I falsely hoped to meet the beings who, pardoning my outward form, would love me for the excellent qualities which I was capable of unfolding.”
The book offers many interesting avenues of philosophical exploration if one is so inclined to ponder such things; for example, allusions to religion and Genesis, possible criticisms of using science to "play God", the relationship between creator and creation. All of these things interest me, yes, but it is the painfully human part of this book that has always so deeply affected me.
Because the sad thing, the really sad thing, is that pretty much everyone has heard of Frankenstein's monster... but so many don't know how human the character is. Created as a scientific experiment by an overly ambitious man, he comes into a frightening and hostile world that immediately rejects him on sight. Even the man who made him cannot look upon his creation without feeling horror. It's that same thing that gets me in books every time: things could have been so different. If people had just been a little less judgmental, a little less scared, and a little more understanding.
This being, created from different parts of corpses, seeks love and finds hatred, so he instead decides to embrace it. Fuelled by his own rage at the unfairness of the world, he gradually turns towards evil. Everyone knows him as "the monster" so it's hard for me to call him anything else, but I basically always saw him like this:
He belongs in my own little mind category with the likes of Heathcliff and Erik (aka The Phantom of the Opera). Scared, angry villains who were made so by their own unfortunate circumstances that plunged them into worlds where they couldn't find a place. The kind of characters you simultaneously hate and love, but most of all hope they find some kind of peace.
So call it science-fiction, if you will. Call it horror, if you must. But this story is brimming with some of the most realistic and almost unbearably moving human emotion that I have ever read.
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