Pop Culture Frankenstein

FrankensteinTo go with my online class Fantasy and Science Fiction: The Human Mind, Our Modern World, I started a series of posts listing companion materials in pop culture, preferably ones that are a little forgotten, have not received the attention I think they deserve, or take an unusual angle.  All the better if they are available online, double-plus for free.

These are the ones I propose to accompany Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley’s Frankenstein, Or: The New Prometheus.

  • I  was nagged by the parallel with George Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion (My Fair Lady on the stage and in a movie).  Turns out I was not the only one: John H. Lienhard has some related thoughts in his paper Frankenstein, Faust and Pygmalion, as did Jamie S. Rich in a review of the 1938 movie “Pygmalion”.
  • The first Frankenstein movie ever made, the 1910 silent 16-minute production by Edison Studios.
  • The 1931 classic movie with Boris Karloff, directed by James Whale, on Vimeo (with Spanish subtitles).
  • This YouTube playlist has 37 Frankenstein clips including the 13-part audiobook, the 1910 silent movie, the 1932 (13 episodes), 1947 (2 episodes) and 1955 (2 episodes) radio drama versions, and more.
  • Librivox offers five audiobook versions, all free, of Frankenstein.
  • Here is a fun one: the National Institute of Health, an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, has an online exhibit and lesson plans on Frankenstein: Penetrating the Secrets of Nature as part of its higher education section on the history of medicine.
  • There’s an app for that: Frankenstein for iPad, from Inkle.
  • Kate Beaton’s webcomic Hark, a Vagrant on Mary Shelley.
  • Less pop culture, mostly scholarly: over 200 articles on the topic of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley’s Frankenstein!  Some are written by science fiction authors, like Brian Aldiss.
  • Works from and on Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley on Unz.org.
Aldini, 1804
Aldini, Giovanni. Essai théorique et expérimental sur le galvanisme; avec une série d’expériences faites en présence des commissaires de l’Institut national de France, et en divers amphithéatres anatomiques de Londres. Vol. 1, plate 4. Paris, Fournier, 1804.