Mary Shelley's Frankenstein and Feminism

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GRIN Verlag, 2008 - 28 pages
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Seminar paper from the year 2001 in the subject English Language and Literature Studies - Literature, grade: 1,0, University of London (English Department), course: Women, Writing and Feminism, 6 entries in the bibliography, language: English, abstract: Mary W. Shelley wrote her novel Frankenstein in a time in which women were expected to stay at home, care fore the children and do the household. Men normally worked outside the home in the public sphere, the division of roles was very strict and men were valued over women . Science and research were domains exclusively for men. Although she was no scientist, her husband and several other scientists, e.g. Erasmus Darwin, influenced Mary Shelley. She has however somehow entered a male sphere, which was normally forbidden for her. This could perhaps be one of the reasons why she did not publish her novel herself but her husband Percy. Another reason for this could be that women writer had a bad reputation. Their works were normally regarded as bad because they did not have a good education . A woman writer was regarded as "unladylike," she was expected to be "modest, chaste and docile" and an "angel" . The only duty of a woman was to be a good wife and especially a good mother, she was normally the only responsible for the education of the children because the men went to work and never participated in nurture. This essay will examine the role of each woman in Frankenstein in the 19th century, the importance of a mother for a child and the failure of Victor Frankenstein to create and nurture a child without a woman.

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